Even as things continue to trend upwards in comcis retailing, this Columbia Missourian story on the closing of a comics shop reminds us that the battle is still being fought one store at a time.

When he opened the shop in January 2006, Quinlan bought his backstock from another comic book store closing in Columbia, then borrowed some money from his father to stock the store with new comics. After breaking even in the first year, Quinlan said, the numbers began looking grim over the summer when it appeared to him that a lot of his loyal customers had moved. The decline in business forced Quinlan to look into closing the shop.

He called his distributor, Diamond Comic Distributors Inc., two weeks ago to inform it that he would be closing in a month. But when Diamond Inc. stopped sending shipments of new comics last week, Quinlan had to break the bad news to each customer who came into the shop.

“It definitely caught me off guard when Boen told me,” said Scott Ziolko, a Columbia comic book creator and member of the comic book enthusiasts group Mid-Missouri Comics Collective. “I am really sad to see the shop close, as it was a friendly place to go. I’d stop by even when I wasn’t able to buy anything, just to say hi.”