Fantagraphics Kickstarts its 2014 spring season


#1

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#2

I’m in for the signed & sketched Jim, an easy choice as I’ve been a Woodring fan since time immemorial. (I’m a little bummed about missing out on the signed & sketched Jaime Hernandez book, although I really can’t afford both.) I know that in a major sense Kim Thompson is irreplaceable, but I still hope that Groth can find someone to fill in for him.


#3

I’m not sure I understand. Why is Fantagraphics Kickstarting at all?? Do they not have enough money from sales of last year’s books to fund this year’s? Is this just the latest way to advertise and reach a particular audience now, or is this perhaps how we create collectability in a post eBay world? I don’t get it.


#4

Agreed. Not a fan of Kickstarter being used by established entities to crowdfund. Because they can afford marketing for their Kickstarters, it devalues the kickstarters of the true independents.


#5

From the Kickstarter page -

Invest in our spring season and be a part of the company that has published the best cartoonists in the history of the world.

FANTAGRAPHICS BOOKS IS ASKING FOR YOUR SUPPORT. CONTINUE OUR LEGACY BY HELPING TO FINANCE OUR SPRING-SUMMER SEASON, AND BE A PART OF THE COMPANY THAT HAS PUBLISHED MORE GREAT CARTOONISTS THAN ANY PUBLISHER IN THE HISTORY OF COMICS.

2013 has been a particularly hard year for all of us at Fantagraphics Books. Earlier in the year, one of our founding partners, Kim Thompson, was diagnosed with lung cancer and died four and a half months later, on June 19. Because Kim was such an active part of our company, his death has had repercussions — emotionally, of course, but financially as well. Kim edited our European graphic novel line and as a result of his illness, 13 of his books scheduled for the Spring-Summer season had to be cancelled or postponed, representing the loss of nearly a third of that season. Our fixed costs stayed the same —because they’re fixed— but the income 13 books would’ve generated was lost, disrupting our cash flow, and leaving us in a tight spot. Many, if not most of them, will be re-scheduled (Jacques Tardi’s Run Like Crazy, Run Like Hell is scheduled for July 2014, for example) but in the meantime, we’ve suffered a severe shortfall that will impede our ability to produce next season’s books. That’s why we’re asking our faithful readers and new converts alike to help us recoup — and help finance our next season’s books. The money you contribute will go toward production, design, marketing, and printing our books.

So there is your answer guys. As for Fantagraphics not being a true indie… wtf is all I can think of to say. WTF.


#6

Yeah, it’s kind of frustrating when people don’t RTFA. For the rest of you: Fantagraphics has never been a huge money-making operation. They got sued by someone who didn’t like something that Harlan Ellison said in an interview in The Comics Journal, and ended up with huge legal bills that they paid off by starting a porn comics line, Eros, that probably isn’t a money-maker anymore (along with most other print porn). Their Peanuts reprint series has done well, but again, we’re not talking DC or Marvel numbers; a lot of local comics shops don’t carry any Fantagraphics books, except maybe for a few of the back numbers of relatively big indie artists like Los Bros Hernandez or Bagge or Clowes. The fact that Thompson had such a heavy workload at his age, instead of chilling by the pool, should be an indicator of what the real deal is.


#7

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