Robot 6

Comics A.M. | The comics Internet in two minutes

IDW's Transformers app

IDW's Transformers app

Publishing | BusinessWeek looks at how companies like Marvel, Panelfly, ComiXology and are promoting comics apps for Apple’s just-released iPad, and notes that a cautious DC Comics is still “assessing that tablet and other devices.” It’s a general overview, touching upon the “Is it a game-changer?” theme, but it offers one tidbit I don’t recall seeing previously: Apple takes 30 percent of sales, leaving publishers with — in the words of Panelfly’s Wade Slitkin — “the lion’s share” of revenues from comics purchased through iPhone apps.

The magazine also reports that Apple may have sold as many as 700,000 iPads in the debut weekend, more than double early estimates. In other iPad news: The Marvel Comics App, officially announced on Friday, is ranked at No. 14 on the list of free apps offered through Apple’s iTunes store. And on Saturday, IDW Publishing announced its entry into the iPad arena with four free apps. [BusinessWeek]

Legal | Bestselling Japanese author Manabu Miyazaki, son of a yakuza boss, last week sued police in Fukuoka prefecture for asking stores to remove underworld comics and magazines from their shelves. The police request was meant to enforce an ordinance designed to curtail the influence of the crime syndicates. [New Straits Times]

From "Zig and Wikki"

From "Zig and Wikki"

Publishing | Francoise Mouly discusses kids’ comics and two years of TOON Books: “In kindergarten, both boys and girls are reading. Then there’s a point between first and second grade where girls keep reading things like The Babysitter’s Club and books that have a lot to do with the relationships between the characters. But boys drop precipitously somewhere around second grade because there’s nothing for them to read, because they’re not interested in those types of books. There’s a gap right there. That gap is actually fillable by comics. Take Captain Underpants, for example. Boys become interested in that kind of gross-out storytelling, but it’s discouraged. Teachers have said to me, it’s not that boys don’t read; it’s that they don’t read what we think they should be reading.” [Graphic Novel Reporter]

Publishing | Laura Cameron looks at romance publisher Harlequin’s success in the Japanese market. [Canadian Business]

Retailing | It’s probably worth pointing out that while the Barnes & Noble location in Hoboken, New Jersey, closed last week, comics/jewelry store Traders of Babylon remains. [The Jersey Journal]

Retailing | Andrew Knittle marks the 12th anniversary of Norman, Oklahoma’s Speeding Bullet Comics, the store owned by Annette and Matt Price. [The Norman Transcript]

Internet | Less than two months after its acquisition by digital-comics company, iFanboy has announced a content expansion that includes John Siuntres’s popular “Word Balloon” podcast, and the addition of such writers as Matt Adler, David Brothers and Molly McIsaac. []

The Red Monkey Double Happiness Book

The Red Monkey Double Happiness Book

Best of 2009 | Tom Spurgeon lists the best releases from last year. [The Comics Reporter]

Creators | Penny Arcade creators Jerry Holkins and Mike Krahulik continue their interview tour in support of The Splendid Magic of Penny Arcade: The 11 1/2 Anniversary Edition. [USA Today, Speakeasy]

Creators | Writer Scott Snyder chats about Vertigo’s American Vampire and Marvel’s Iron Man Noir. [Verbicide, USA Today]

Creators | Marc-Oliver Frisch posts his interview with writer Robert Kirkman from the German edition of The Walking Dead, Vol. 10: “I have a rule on killing characters … I do it without thinking. I kind of like that … it seems more real to me. If I ever kept a character around because I thought it would be good for the story, I’d feel like I was cheating. That’s not how death works. It’s supposed to be quick and sudden and disruptive. So I try to keep that in mind.” [Comiks Debris]

Kill Shakespeare #1

Kill Shakespeare #1

Creators | Collaborators Conor McCreery and Anthony Del Col discuss their new IDW Publishing series Kill Shakespeare, which debuted over the weekend at WonderCon. “We think the most entertaining feature of our concept is seeing what happens when these notable heroes and villains are thrown together into the same world,” Del Col said. “We’re very intrigued by the recent trend of literary mashups, from Fables to Pride & Prejudice & Zombies. It’s a great sign, akin to sampling and mixing in the musical world.” [Underwire]

Creators | Writer Rick Remender talks about The Last Days of American Crime, the end of Fear Agent and more. [Multiversity Comics]

Creators | Chad Collier interviews Terminator 2029 writer Zack Whedon during his Saturday signing at Golden Apple Comics. [Department H]

Creators | Brian Heater wraps up his four-part Q&A with Bill Ayers. [The Daily Cross Hatch]


One Comment

Re: Publishing That 70-30 split is called “The Agency Model” and it is what caused the Amazon-Macmillan war a few months ago. Amazon wanted to continue selling ebooks at a loss at $9.99. Publishers felt this devalued their titles. Amazon shifted to the agency pricing last Saturday. Amazon acquiesced when Apple’s bookstore announced they would follow the itunes agency pricing structure.

As for boys and reading… sometimes I just want to take a copy of Absolute Sandman and slap the teachers upside the head… but that would be wrong. So instead I ply my nephew (and nieces) with age-appropriate comics.

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