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Tuesday, June 01, 2004

Interrogation time, kids! 

A sequence of questions I snapped up from Herr Bacardi:

1. Do you tend to go to the nearest store, the best store, any store, or does it matter?

Best store, which is NOT the nearest one. There's like five comic book shops between me and Zeus, but Zeus is the only one around offering a 15% discount... and they bag ALL comics you buy, pull list or no.

2. Ladies, what books do you tend to purchase, or what kind would you like to purchase (if you are a male please leave blank or supply what a girlfriend reads)?

Sadly, Mrs. Ringwood is dead. But I made a lovely suitcase out of her.

3. What one thing would you add or change about your most frequented store (i.e. What is the worst thing about the store)?

It's hard to get them to remember to order me stuff. They stock a great, vast selection of TPBs, from Ultimate titles to AiT/PlanetLar to Slave Labor, and it's in a relatively cosmopolitan section of town, so they have by necessity a very wide variety of selection... but shit, man, how many times I gotta ask for the second Nocturnals TPB before it shows up?

4. What one thing would you not change (i.e. What is the best thing about the store)?

Oh, the staff. I get baffled every time someone talks about elitist, snobby, unhelpful staff, because these guys (and gal) are just about the most helpful people around. They know their shit, they're accessible, they're funny, they're good with recommendations (they got me started on Demo and Y the Last Man), they kept me informed on what my favorite writers were doing before I discovered the blogo-mart, etc, etc. Good folks.

5. Do you read any small press comic books currently? Which one(s)? (examples: Lone Star Press, Avatar)

Sure. If you write a good story I'll give it a shot, I don't care who you are. DC and its imprints probably make up the largest percentage of my purchases, but I buy AiT/PlanetLar, Avatar, Rocket, SLG, and a pretty hefty amount of Oni TPBs. See? People can like superhero comics and B&W indie books. It's madness!

6. What back issues do you buy?

Uh, none of the above. Only time I did this was when my store had its annual 75% off all backstock sale... then I go fucking mad, trying to catch obscure works by writers I like, and getting the last parts of the Hitman series not collected in TPB (WHY, DC, WHY!) So that's where I get my Jenny Sparks mini, or Adventures in the Rifle Brigade, and so on and so forth.

7. How do you decide what comic book to buy? Writer, artist, character, word of mouth, etc?

All of the above, as J.B. said. Writer gets precedent over all other factors, because I come to a comic book for story first and everything else second. (If something was written by Chuck Austen but the art was, in this bizarro hypothetical, Eduardo Risso, I'd be seriously torn about buying it.) I don't generally follow characters unless someone good's writing them. Word of mouth can go a long way -- it's why I'm on 75% of the series I'm on now.

8. Do you buy strictly current age comic books or do you buy older comic books? What kinds?

All shapes and colors, brother. Older comic books are necessarily more expensive, so I don't deal with them as much -- and their collections are hardly less so. As it stands, I'm setting aside $100 for some of those EC slipcase collections.

9. How do you feel about graded comic books?

To be blunt: they're for fools. Do you buy these comics to enjoy them, or what? That's like buying a toy and keeping it in the packaging. Oh wait... you probably do that too, don't you?

10. What comic book related merchandise do you buy?

Hmm. I bought a Viper Comics hat. A Punisher skull cap I won at the premiere. I have the odd action figure, almost all given to me as gifts. Some posters. A neat bust of the Pilgrim from Just a Pilgrim I bought in a moment of weakness ("but it was on SALE!"). The PVC figure set from Dark Knight Strikes Again. A mug with the Punisher skull on it.

11. What do you read if you are not reading comic books?

Name it. I read Entertainment Weekly and Premiere on a regular basis, as far as magazines go. Nonfiction, biography, autobiography, fiction... just got done reading that Inner Views: Filmmakers in Conversation book, read Fast Food Nation not so long ago, now I'm reading an anthology of Victorian ghost stories.

12. What do you buy at comic book conventions?

Not a lot. I got a signed print from Michael Lark at the last one I went to (I've been to two, so far), plus his book of sketches... the aforementioned mug, Viper Comics hat, and a fair portion of posters were gotten at the two cons I've been to... and that's it. I don't go there to buy shit. Well, okay, I do... but that's secondary to meeting the pro's. That's the real con payoff, for me.

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