Thursday, July 17, 2008

Marvel Comics Circulation Figures

I love seeing actual numbers, so this Publishers Weekly article by Todd Allen, which examines Marvel Comics's recently released audited circulation figures, is like catnip to me.

The big take-away for me is something every publishing person should have tattooed on the inside of his eyelids: different markets want different things. Some big direct-market books sell decently as subscriptions and on the newsstand, but some direct-market dogs (notably books for kids) seem to sell much better through other channels.

And so some projects that look like money-losing dogs through the blinkers of the direct market are actually at least modestly successful. Because one market isn't everything, and any industry that tries to rely entirely on one market will find itself in big trouble.

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