Indie Books in the Stores: Comicopolis

Comicopolis

Comicopolis

A few weekends ago, I happened on a small town of mind-altering art and sensation-enhancing words that goes by the name of Santa Cruz, California. Only in a town full of suspiciously friendly people would I find such a cool comic book dispensary as Comicopolis. Wouldn’t you know it? They’re down to sell those quality indie books you’ve never heard of that you should be reading. I chatted with John Arnold for blunt words on the chronically good books they stock their store with.

Hello, Comicopolis! First of all I dig your store and I dig the prime real estate that your indie books have. How long have you been carrying books by local/independent artists and writers?

JA: From the very beginning. We’ve always believed in supporting independent press, and especially those working locally.

What do you look for in these books when stocking your shelves?

JA: Same thing we look for in all books: quality storytelling and artwork.

Do you have any zines/books in your personal collection that used to, or still do, adorn your store shelves?

JA: I’m a huge collector, and have a ton of books in my personal collection. I’ve been reading comics since I was a wee lad and so, of course, have many, many, Marvel & DC books. But I’ve also enjoyed many indy/small press works. The list is way too long to go into here, but some notable works include Asterios Polyp, Habibi, Blankets, Black Hole, and of course, BB Wolf and the Three LPs (my first published GN).

I imagine you make a decent profit on books from the big two and similar publishers. Why would you carry books by artists and writers most people haven’t heard of?

JA: It is crucial for the industry to constantly see new talent and new ideas. It would become stagnant without it. With that in mind, I think it is necessary for all of us, publishers, retailers, distributors, to take chances and promote new talent and their work(s).

If you and your business associate were to dress up as a comedy duo, who would it be?

JA: Martin & Lewis

To find out more about Comicopolis, there are multiple links in this post. Seriously, what’s your problem?

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One Comment

  1. Posted July 2, 2012 at 12:22 am | Permalink

    Here are my five suggestions!1) The Adventures of Tintin Young Readers Edition: I sattred reading Tintin over 30 years ago with monthly installments in Children’s Digest. These inexpensive volumes (under $10) are a great way to introduce Tintin to a new generation of readers.2) Stuff: Compulsive Hoarding and the Meaning of Things: Couldn’t all of us learn something from this book? As the description reads, Stuff answers the question of what happens when our stuff starts to own us. 3) Super Dinosaur Vol. 1 Trade Paperback, by Robert Kirkman and Jason Howard. For anyone who enjoys shows like Ben 10 or Generator Rex, this series is just pure fun, and is begging to be made into a show on Cartoon Network. 4) Too Cool to be Forgotten, by Alex Robinson. When Andy’s quest to stop smoking results in him being transported back to 1985, a middle-age man gets a second chance to change the decisions made by his teenage self. However, he must decide if altering those decisions will actually make things worse. It’s Back to the Future done in a much more realistic manner.The one item I’d most like to receive (drum roll, please): 5) The Complete Peanuts (Any Volume). The significance of this project cannot be overstated. Fantagraphics releases two volumes of these hardcovers each year, with each volume covering about two years of strips. With hundreds of never before reprinted strips and wonderful introductions from people like Lynn Johnston and Walter Cronkite, this collection is meant to be enjoyed and passed on to future generations. The publisher also offers the option of purchasing both volumes together (for any given year) in a nice collector’s slipcase.

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