In two days, many local comics shops will have new books to sell for the first time in weeks! While it won’t be a big haul, it’s still a start!

BACK TO WEDNESDAY?

2020, coronavirus, LCS, local comics shop, DC, Marvel, Diamond, Lunar Distributors, UCS Comic Distributors, COVID-19, Midtown, The last few weeks, I’ve been fortunate enough to pick up new books on Tuesdays at a shop that’s been selling new DC comics through a different distributor. However, it is possible that this week could be the last time I get to continue that pattern. Things seem to be up in the air regarding who will be getting what from whom! Stay tuned!

There was an interesting development this week that caught my attention. Word went out that there was a “transportation issue” dealing with DC’s books getting to Diamond and then to local stores. This is going to cause a delay from this Wednesday to next week for a lot of DC’s product, particularly the books that have already been released through other distributors. Coincidentally, that means the first week with Marvel’s new stuff will be the same day a lot of DC’s books will hit many stores. I say, “coincidentally,” but I honestly doubt it. I still consider them using other distributors to be a valuable practice, but no one seems certain how things will proceed. Will stores go back to Diamond because other companies still send out their books through them or not? It’s something I’ll be watching closely. I’ll still be supporting my local shop, of course, but I’m hoping competition will help improve service all around in the industry. Again, we’ll see.

Many stores still haven’t decided on what they’ll do about Tuesday versus Wednesday. Hopefully, things will sort out in the next few weeks.

MAY 20 IS STILL A BIG DAY

2020, coronavirus, LCS, local comics shop, DC, Marvel, Diamond, Lunar Distributors, UCS Comic Distributors, COVID-19, Midtown, Not every LCS will be open for business on Wednesday, of course. That will depend on the rules and regulations in place in their specific areas. I’m lucky in one way because, in Florida where I live, most stores are already open, although some have limited schedules at this time. The old rule, “It’s better to safe than sorry” applies, seems like.

I’m still keeping an eye out to see just what stores are or will be back in business this week. Honestly, I hate to see ANY LCS close because they’re so important to the industry. I do hear that several shops are truly anxious for business to begin to ramp up again. It’s no secret that many stores don’t have big cash reserves, so many owners are nervous about just who will come back and buy stuff this week as well as next Wednesday, when the “big two” will have new product on the stands for the first time in weeks.

As I’ve previously discussed, some LCS’s are worried that some of their customers won’t return because they can’t afford to buy new product. Unemployment is causing many fans to tighten their belts and stick to paying the bills they MUST pay, so a lot of store owners will know better what’s going to happen by Friday, a day many people get paid.

HOW ARE FANS DOING NOW?

2020, coronavirus, LCS, local comics shop, DC, Marvel, Diamond, Lunar Distributors, UCS Comic Distributors, COVID-19, Midtown, The pandemic has caused a lot of shifts in behaviors among us. I had never heard of ZOOM until a few weeks ago. Now, I talk with friends often through that software. A lot of us want to stay in touch, and actually being able to see each other and hear their voices causes quite a nice boost in morale these days.

This makes me wonder, how have fans made it through this pandemic? We haven’t had new books to buy over the counter in weeks, and since comics are a habitual practice (in other words, we get and read them on a regular basis), are fans still interested in new comics? Or have other interests risen up to take their place?

From my conversations with other fans, I think many of us are truly anxious to be able to return to the practice of picking up and reading new stories! We’re all talking about what we’re looking forward to diving into, like the “Empyre” event in Marvel or “Death Metal” from DC. And a lot of fans have missed the regular visits to our LCS to talk with friends and people who work there about our shared interest in the industry. I can’t wait!

If I need to wear a mask or practice social distancing to get new books over the counter, by curbside pick-up, or through the mail, I’ll do it! And I think I’m not alone! The question is, will there be enough of us plunking down our money at the LCS to literally “get back to business” starting this week? I hope so, and I hope we’re pleasantly surprised by the turnout and the support fans will be giving the industry on every level.

I still feel it is important to say, though, that we all need to be sure to stay safe and keep reading our comics! We can’t afford to lose a single one of us!

What do you think? Are you planning on buying new product from your LCS this week and/or next week? If not, what has changed? What are you going to be doing differently now as a result of the pandemic? Please share your thoughts in the space below!


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About Author

Wayne Hall creates the Wayne's Comics Podcast. He’s interviewed Scott Snyder, Greg Capullo, John Layman, Kyle Higgins, Phil Hester, Jimmy Palmiotti & Justin Gray, David Petersen, Christos Gage, Mike Grell, and Matt Kindt. On this site each week, he writes his "Comics Portal" column (general comics comments and previews) and reviews comics.

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