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Michael Roberts
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Posted: 15 February 2018 at 3:55pm | IP Logged | 1 post reply

No-one else would do that with other forms of entertainment: "We'll release a chapter of Stephen King's short stories, for one or two quid, over six months. Eight months later, the complete short story will be available." No way!

——

I can’t tell if you are being sarcastic, or if you are unaware that “THE GREEN MILE was originally released in a six volume serial format. 
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Robbie Parry
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Posted: 15 February 2018 at 4:32pm | IP Logged | 2 post reply

No, I didn't know. Why would I be sarcastic? It could have applied to any novel. As for THE GREEN MILE, well I'm sure that the majority of books (complete stories) don't get released that way.

I mean, a better analogy would be HARRY POTTER. Imagine if the *first* book had been released as separate volumes over a year-long period (or more).
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Michael Roberts
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Posted: 15 February 2018 at 5:03pm | IP Logged | 3 post reply

No, I didn't know. Why would I be sarcastic?

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I don't know. That's why I was confused. It was too on the nose. THE GREEN MILE. was released in volumes over six months with a complete version coming out eight months later.
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Robbie Parry
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Posted: 15 February 2018 at 5:06pm | IP Logged | 4 post reply

Well, I didn't know. I was thinking of a writer/novel for an analogy (I could have easily used JK Rowling, Dan Brown, etc). I'm making a general point about how we get incomplete tales.

I can't imagine people wanting to buy the first HARRY POTTER book in instalments. Or buy solo episodes of The Walking Dead (one episode a disc) when the boxset with all episodes will be available.

Was THE GREEN MILE the exception rather than the rule when it came to a release schedule like that, Michael? What was the motivation of the publisher in doing that?
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William Costello
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Posted: 15 February 2018 at 7:36pm | IP Logged | 5 post reply

For Mr Miller (if he comes back on): Is there any information from Marvel and DC regarding direct subscriptions to customers. Years ago, there used to be annual published data on sales published in one issue of each book each year, but that information seems to have gone by the wayside.

In Connecticut, direct subscriptions from Marvel and DC are handled by a division on Midtown Comics in NYC. I'm not sure if Midtown handles the subscription base country wide, or if Marvel and DC use different fulfillment companies based on region.

Any insight you have would be appreciated.
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Rebecca Jansen
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Posted: 15 February 2018 at 8:24pm | IP Logged | 6 post reply

I think they used to have to publish that accounting thing with the various columns of sold, unsold and promo copies once a year because of some postal regulations and/or qualifying for a printed matter rate. Maybe the need for it changed?

Once there was direct distribution on the non-returnable basis to more fan-centric sellers the companies could really see what was popular with that audience whereas they were just kind of general 'bales of comics' to the newsstands and places with spinner racks. Whitman/Western/Gold Key actually dropped off newsstands before anyone, going with three-to-a-bag entirely. I remember because some collectors such as myself (Donald Duck, Scamp, Chip N' Dale) wanted to know about subscriptions to their specific favorites. This must've been around 1980-81.
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Peter Martin
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Posted: 15 February 2018 at 8:26pm | IP Logged | 7 post reply

I believe Stephen King was trying to emulate the serialized installments of the great novels by Charles Dickens, which would appear monthly in journals.

He also tried serialising a novel called The Plant, with an honour system of payment -- and it's never been completed.   
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Brian O'Neill
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Posted: 16 February 2018 at 5:50pm | IP Logged | 8 post reply

Rebecca:
***********
Once there was direct distribution on the non-returnable basis to more fan-centric sellers the companies could really see what was popular with that audience whereas they were just kind of general 'bales of comics' to the newsstands and places with spinner racks. Whitman/Western/Gold Key actually dropped off newsstands before anyone, going with three-to-a-bag entirely. I remember because some collectors such as myself (Donald Duck, Scamp, Chip N' Dale) wanted to know about subscriptions to their specific favorites. This must've been around 1980-81.
************************

I remember, around the age of 5,  the days of 'three-packs' of comics at department stores..and now that I think of it, it seems like the 'Whitman/Gold Key' stuff based on Disney, and other 'licensed properties', tended to be sold at different stores from the 'Whitman/DC', and 'Marvel with no Whitman logo in sight' editions. 
The superhero stuff just disappeared around '79-'80(at which point I learned there were stores that sold comics on racks, without plastic..and they charged for each one, not 3 at a time!)
I don't think I ever saw a 'three-pack' of 'Gold Key' anything after about '79, as well. Reference books confirm that they continued publishing comics into the early 80s(seemed to be cancelled gradually, from '82 to '84), but in my area(San Francisco), the department stores that had sold them as long as I remembered stopped carrying them earlier before the end of the decade.
So, whatever Gold Key was selling at the end, it was sold regionally, at best.


Edited by Brian O'Neill on 16 February 2018 at 5:55pm
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