Wednesday, June 24, 2009
POST HEROESCON :: Chuck Rozanski Con Report
Well, I'm in the middle of preparing my con report, having already posted 245 photos to Flickr, descriptions of which are appearing as I write them. I'll be blogging about it here as well, but in the meantime I wanted to share with you what Chuck Rozanski said in this week's Mile High Comics newsletter.
To preface: if you're not aware of Chuck, Mile High Comics is one of the oldest and most venerable comics shops in the country, and Chuck Rozanski is a popular face at shows all across the country. Not only because dealers love selling him back issues, but he also happens to be a cool dude, too. Here's what he had to say--I'd just link to it instead of cutting and pasting it in toto, but Chuck's newsletter is e-mail only as far as I can see:
"After a wonderful weekend in Charlotte, we're now getting ready to head for the airport. HeroesCon turned out to be just as fantastic a comics convention as I had anticipated, with many thousands of fans from throughout the nation attending. While HeroesCon was originally intended as a regional convention, it is rapidly becoming an alternate destination for those dedicated comics fans who want to attend a large convention without all the media overlay that now dominates other large comics shows, such as San Diego and New York. It is a real blessing to be in a place where the vast majority of attendees are there because they love to read, as opposed to watching television, going to movies, and/or playing video games. I can pleasantly engage in all of the above on occasion, but my basic bias is definitely toward reading, so I find it quite refreshing to attend a comics convention where the entire emphasis of the convention is on comic books. Is it any wonder that HeroesCon is my favorite convention of the year?
"Aside from just having fun here in Charlotte, we also purchased a huge number of back issue comics from the dealers exhibiting at the show. This convention was really a test of our new online pricing structure, as I had to explore whether our wholesale back issue comics suppliers would be willing to lower their prices enough that I could maintain our prices at their new, much lower, levels. Blessedly, the answer turned out to be a resounding "Yes!" While I did run into several instances where I just could not work out deals with folks because they still had their comics priced at pre-recession levels, I found more than enough dealers who were willing to be flexible enough to spend my entire buying budget, and then some. I ended up buying about 30,000 back issue comics and trade paperbacks in Charlotte, including well over 10,000 Silver Age and Bronze Age comics! That was more than enough pre-1980 back issues to completely restock us from the debilitating effects on our online inventory resulting from our sales of the past two weeks, so I am feeling quite happy this morning. While there were certainly a few issues where I found out that I am going to have to raise our prices slightly over the next week in order to maintain our inventories, in most instances I am going to be able to keep our present extremely steep discounts in effect for you.
"While I purchased Silver Age and Bronze Age comics quite well in Charlotte, my assistant, Will Moulton, was also purchasing this past weekend at the WizardWorld convention in Philadelphia. Will was able to also buy about 30,000 comics (with an emphasis on issues that we're seeking from the past five years...), but his real score was a single deal containing over 3,000 scarce and out-of-print trade paperbacks. If you've been looking for any books for your library, the next couple of weeks are going to be a great time for you to shop with Mile High Comics!
"I'm going to have to cut things short now, as we still have to turn in our rental van, and then head for the airport for our flight home. Before I go, however, I want to close out today's newsletter with a special thanks to HeroesCon owner and founder Shelton Drum, and his entire crew at the wonderful Heroes Aren't Hard to Find retail comics shop. Thanks to Shelton and his wonderful crew, we all have the opportunity each year to attend a comics convention that retains the wonder and magical atmosphere of Phil Seuling's legendary 1970's conventions at the Commodore Hotel in New York, and the incredible early 1980's conventions in San Diego. Being able to step back in time, and to once again experience the joy that I felt at attending the greatest comics conventions of my youth, is such an incredible treat that I am forever their debt. Shelton, you're the best!"
Holy Cow! What a sweet post by Chuck! Shelton was super flattered by it, especially the part about Phil Seuling and the early San Diego shows, where Shelton was set up as a young man selling comics, before he even had established Heroes Aren't Hard To Find! Okay more con report coming soon.
[pictured at top of post, from left: Chuck, his wife Nanette, and our Warehouse Manager Seth Peagler, together in our warehouse after loadout of HeroesCon]