Wednesday 24 December 2008

Christmas Prescience

So just before Christmas a great thing has happened. SFX, that well-respected and much-loved British monthly that covers all aspects of SF/Fantasy/Horror has spotlighted Dick Turpin and the Restless Dead as their 'zine of the month. They describe it as a "whimsically dark engaging read" which is a quote I'm more than happy with, and will sit there with Comic Shop Voice's opinion in November that we "create comics that everybody can tap into, everybody can enjoy" as our most favoured soundbites.

The SFX review appears within their lively letters pages, and being one of the most popular sections in SFX means that a fair proportion of the readership will see it and perhaps even go so far as to buy it. However the biggest thing SFX has given us, apart from being our first mainstream printed press exposure, is awareness. If even a handful of SFX readers stop by our table at our next convention appearance and pick up one of our comics based solely on the fact they've heard of us through the magazine then job done. If just one person remembers we featured in SFX at Christmas we won't complain, because it means the exposure worked and somebody who never knew of us now does.

The issue of SFX featuring our review came out last week. This week the January 2009 Diamond Previews hit the UK comic shop, featuring our Dick Turpin as one of the comics available to order in the Previews UK section*. The timing couldn't have been better in my opinion, with a comic being highlighted in the former being offered for sale in the latter. Maybe, just maybe, some UK comics fans will ask their retailer to stock the comic because they liked the sound of it in SFX and that little bubble of awareness inflates ever so slightly.

You see, Time Bomb Comics is still a very small fish, but we're a species that some are beginning to recognise and remember. This awareness, this prescience, is something solid that we can build on as we enter our busiest publishing year yet.

And at this time of year, what really could be better than some Christmas Prescience?

*9781845765132 is the Previews order number for Dick Turpin and the Restless Dead, but expect to hear a lot of this number over the next few weeks...

Tuesday 2 December 2008

Christmas Comes Early

In fact it came in mid November when we received confirmation that Dick Turpin and the Restless Dead will be featured in the UK Section of the January 2009 Diamond Previews catalogue. This marks a great step for us as potentially every comics shop in Great Britain and Northern Ireland can have copies on their shelves in April 2009. But of course, it's not really that easy.

Having a listing in Previews is no guarantee that a retailer will order the comic, which is where the seriously hard work comes in. At the moment the plan is to send to all Diamond UK accounts some promo material in January along with their order forms to hopefully encourage them to take a punt on us. No mean feat given the sheer amount of stuff that's listed in each Previews catalogue (in fact show any non-comics fan the catalog and watch their faces when you tell them that's just the product coming out during one month) but we're hoping that some of the positive reviews we've received and the fact that we're a new British publisher will snag us a few orders. That and the fact that I'll be phoning as many retailers as I can once our listing is published to encourage, request and blatantly beg that they order at least 1 copy. There's over 300 shops who carry stock through Diamond UK. Suddenly my 500 free minutes deal seems pitifully inadequate.

Of course the other thing would be for you, lone reader, to ask your shop to order a copy. Or maybe a few so you can get your mates to buy one as well. Trust me, neither Andy or myself would be offended by that - in fact, let us know you banged the Time Bomb Comics drum and we'll definitely add you to our Christmas card list for next year!

Other news: Dan Barritt has completed the line art for The Sisterhood and it looks pretty damned good. Now Dan is getting on with the colour artand when that is done it's a fair bet that statement will justifiably change to "pretty damned amazing".

Andy Dodd is finishing off the inks for the First Kill short story we've been working on for Accent UK. Andy's done a cracking job again, his artwork seems to get better and better with each project we do, and I'm really looking forward to what Dave and Colin at Accent UK think of it. Once Andy's done then he's back to the final touches on The Furies.

Paul Thompson has begun to send some pencils through for Primetime. Still early days on this one but looking very good so far, and a project I'll say much more about when the time is right.
All in all, lots going on and lots more bubbling under!