News from the world of comic book publishing! Diamond, the near-monopoly for comic book distribution, announced a couple Fridays ago they were going to up their "benchmarks" for the books they'd carry in their catalog: you have to sell more books or they won't list you. Many small publishers heard the news as a death knell of sorts. Diamond enjoys a near monopoly as their catalog is used by most direct market comic book retailers exclusively, and there's no competing national distributor.
Now the folks that brought us Ka-Blam.com and IndyPlanet.com have announced Print-On-Demand Distribution to Direct Market retailers: ComicsMonkey.com was just rolled out today!
Ka-Blam's Comics Monkey could create a new distribution network to, in effect, replace the smaller scale distribution Diamond is abandoning! They've hinted at something in the works for a while now. They stepped up their hints last week, and have now revealed Comics Monkey POD distribution.
Ka-Blam.com is the print-on-demand site. IndyPlanet.com is their on-line store, and now ComicsMonkey.com will be their distribution/retailer hub. All that's there now is the blog entry describing what they're attempting to do, and what numbers they're anticipating for retailer profit and publisher percentage (sort of the "royalty" payment):
I'm very excited! I've got my books up on IndyPlanet.com right now (Panthea Obscura Issue One, Issue Two and Issue Three) and if they can pull this off, it will give me distribution into local comic shops everywhere... if they order the book. It at the very least makes the books available to retailers who might sell them.