Yes, that is me trying to be Tony Stark. Eat it bitches.
So today was Free Comic Book Day or, FCBD if you wanna hashtag that shit on Twitter. I was up at Third Planet, as is my usual routine for such events. I snapped a buttload of pictures of the festivities and got to chat up some new people who came into the store basically as virgins to the world of collecting and comic books and general all around nerdiness. I think a few people walked away with the intention of coming back and hopping into some series sometime down the line. I know a lot of people who picked up the FCBD issue of Iron Man/Thor expressed interest in the new Avengers series and a few picked up copies of Iron Man Legacy and the newest issue of Invincible Iron Man, which really isn’t a bad place to start if you’re going to jump into collecting. Matt Fraction is a badass of the nth degree whose work I will pimp to the moon and back.
But then there are the people who came in simply to get the free book and nothing else. They took their one little giveaway and left, never to be seen again. Or, actually, we’ll see them again next year. I recognize some of them from last year. People who come in once a year to get something for nothing and then disappear into the ether from whence they appeared. The whole idea of FCBD is to get you into the store in the hopes that you’ll buy something else. Support the store that spent their money on the books they’re giving away. Third Planet even had a massive sale. 30% off on Trades and 25% off on back issues. No exceptions. And a healthy selection of people took advantage of that and for that I cannot thank them enough. I just can’t seem to wrap my head around the idea of spending the gas money it requires to drive up to the shop for a single free book and then leave without even browsing the selection in the rest of the store. If they have no interest in comic books or collecting, then why are they bothering with the free book in the first place? It’s sort of a break in the train of logic.
And again, I don’t begrudge these people, because in this economy I can certainly understand wanting some cheap and easy entertainment. But some people don’t understand what kind of work goes into organizing these kinds of events. Last year I was signing my first novel on Free Comic Book Day. I didn’t move many units because a number of the people who walked through the door, who admittedly wanted to try the book, didn’t bother to bring any cash with them in the first place. I’m hoping to use this post as a sort of educational measure, to inform the folks out there that it does cost the stores a healthy amount of money to buy all those free books, and that if they want us to run the promotion in the years to come, spending some money in the store couldn’t hurt.
Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to work on my Volstagg costume for next year. CAKE!
In case you were wondering where I’ll be this FCBD, there’s the promo flyer right there! I’ll have my camera with me taking pictures and generally having a good time!