So, DC Comics. As far as the regular DCU goes, they solicited 42 books. 28 are $2.99. 13 are $3.99 (and many, but not all, have extra content). 1 is $4.99. For their imprints, all 3 Cartoon Networks are $2.99. At Vertigo, 15 books are $2.99, one is $3.99. Wildstorm? 9 titles are $2.99, and four are $3.99. And DC is letting the $3.99 price point start to creep in, the pendulum will soon swing the other way.
So, let's see...Marvel. Marvel has 26 of their books at $2.99. 57 books are $3.99, and almost none have extra content. 3 are $4.99. For their imprints, MAX has 1 $3.99 and 1 $4.99. Licensed books from Stephen King and the Dabels are $3.99. At Icon, the two Mark Millar titles are $2.99, Powers is $3.95, Casanova is $3.99, and Dream Logic is $5.99. Marvel upped their prices and the books had no appreciable drop in numbers from people saying they were too expensive.
Okay, so I ought to be able to charge closer to the actual price point of each issue of Sound Waves, maybe a little more, than the $3.50 per issue from the du Page show and not feel guilty, right?
Not quite. Overall sales of comics for April 2010 are down roughly 20% from April 2009. And that's with Free Comic Book Day drawing record crowds and press, comic book movies everywhere, and so on. That also means a lot of creators are starting to dip below that line for "incentive pay" that gives them royalties and enables them to do comics for a living.
Is it the economy? Maybe. Then again, with comics being so disposable in fans' minds and the emphasis on spin-off media instead of making good comics, maybe the fans are just losing interest. It's no coincidence that DC is trying to revive the Silver Age characters, since that audience is still hitting comic shops and buying titles while the younger crowd falls away.
Decisions, decisions....and praying I don't get crushed under the collapse.