Hastings bookstore chain files for bankruptcy; debt to Diamond uncertain

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As suggested by recent rumblings, Hastings, the third largest national bookstore chain after Barnes and Noble and Books-a-Million, hasfiled for bankruptcy following years of losses. The chain, which operates 123 stores, was purchased in 2014 by Joel Weinshanker, owner of Movie Stop. Despite efforts to diversify its offerings since then, it had mostly foundered with […]

Nostalgia corner: Harris Publications shuts down

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Books and comics may have survived disruption but magazines really haven’t and the great 21st century newsstand massacre just claimed another victim as Harris Publications announced that they were shutting down, effective immediately. Only a few old timers will know why I mention that here: although at the end it was mostly a publisher of […]

Surprise! Raina Telgemeier tops indie bookstore graphic novels sales

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While researching the previous item, I cam across this every other month chart of graphic novel bestsellers in indie bookstores, via the ABA. It’s about what you’d expect, with Raina Telegemeier and Allie Brosh, Noelle Stevenson, Kate Beaton and Saga reigning supreme. In other words, the unstoppable forces of mainstream comics acceptance. A little surprised that no Walking Dead on there, but the new season hadn’t debuted when this chart was made.

ComicsPRO underway in Portland—is DC’s Rebirth on the agenda?

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Here's part of the ComicsPro swag bag. pic.twitter.com/2vYZNxWPhG — matt roberts (@mr_oberts) February 18, 2016 ComicsPRO, the annual meeting of the top retailers organization in North America, is taking place in Portland, OR for the next three days, with publishers and retailers meeting in a relaxed and productive setting. The meeting is closed to the […]

Wal-mart may set up their own graphic novel sections

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Despite the jitters everyone is having about the Big Two’s periodical publishing programs, as we reported the other day, graphic novels did pretty well in 2015, with sales up 22% in bookstores. Calvin Reid follows up on this sanguine report with an interview with Diamond Book Distributions Kuo Yu Liang, who says
2016 will probably be their best year ever.:

The latest Eric Stephenson tells-it-like-it-is interview pokes “dull, “bland” industry

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Image Comics publisher Eric Stephenson is always quotable and evidently not afraid of being quoted, as he often tweaks other publishers in a blunt way little seen in the industry. In a new interview with CBR’s Albert Ching he talks about Image Comics’ successful 2015 while calling other developments “dull.”: Stephenson notes that Image had […]

Ch-ch-ch-changes for The Beat

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If you’re a faithful Beat reader, you know the past year has been filled with discussions of the economics of running a comics news website. This talk was prompted by an unprecedented run of comics sites closing down or losing key personnel. I summed up a lot of my thoughts back in September, pointing out that the realities of the web make running any kind of independent site very difficult these days.