Much continuing comment around the web on the Bookscan 2006 Graphic Novel sales chart as revealed by Brian Hibbs. Dirk has a roundup of links. The Engine thread includes the link to this very interesting discussion of the Bookscan numbers. by people in regular old book publishing. The comments yield many interesting nuggets such as a list of who reports to Bookscan:
Here is a list of the major retailers who report to Bookscan:
Barnes & Noble
Chapter 11 Books
Deseret Book Company
Tower Music and Books
There are also close to 400 independents reporting in, inlcuding Powell’s, Tattered Cover, Elliot Bay, etc…
That is a pretty comprehensive list, folks. And the holes that exist only apply to a small sector of the titles published annually. You can try and nitpick it to death—you are book people, after all—but any list that compiles the cash register sales of the vendors cited above has enormous value.
While there is some argument, the consensus is that Bookscan is as accurate as we can get for right now.
John Jakala, meanwhile, has a different take, looking at some comments on the web from First Second’s Mark Siegel to explain what would seem the discrepancy:
Even after my initial shock wore off, this fact still continued to nag at me. After a while, I finally realized why: According to ICv2 interviews with First Second’s editorial director Mark Siegel, at least two books from First Second each had print runs over 20,000 copies. American Born Chinese, for example, had a combined print run over 25,000. As Siegel noted, the first printing was 16,000, which was before the book was nominated for a National Book Award. The second printing was for around 10,000 copies, and there was a planned (as of Dec. 4, 2006) third printing of unspecified size. This also doesn’t count copies of the more upscale, more expensive Collector’s Edition, which Siegel says is “usually a print run of about 2,000 for the diehards.” So even before a third printing, close to 30,000 copies of American Born Chinese were in print.