The Small Press Expo is running this weekend just outside of Washington, DC in Bethesda, MD. The show is the premiere convention for independent comics, not just drawing big names, but also some amazing talent who don’t get the exposure deserved, and are overshadowed by the more known mainstream publishers at other conventions. Walking the floor of the convention, you can see that there’s truly something for everyone when it comes to comic books and graphic novels, and there’s fantastic independent and small press comics being produced. But, that’s on the show floor, and in previous years this knowledge and fact was confined to the hotel ballroom, social media, word of mouth, and the various blogs that covered it all.
In steps Amazon, who, in their comics and graphic novels section, is highlighting some of the amazing comics and graphic novels you’ll find at the show from the exhibitors and Ignatz nominees. Started in 1997, the Ignatz Awards is the show prize of the Small Press Expo recognizing outstanding achievements in comics and cartooning. For some of the offerings you can buy print copies, and others you can get it right away for the Kindle, all at the solid prices you’d expect from Amazon.
It’s wonderful to see this, not only is the giant in online sales promoting graphic novels, it also promotes the convention itself, putting it out there for many to see. Amazon has even gone so far as to promote it all through their email program, putting SPX and the graphic novels in front of a potential audience that many would kill to be shown to.
This promotion is on top of what comiXology is doing on their site. ComiXology, the leading digital comics platform, has been running a bundle deal where you can purchase 82 comics from folks exhibiting and attending the show for just $10. They’ve promoted it through their social media channels including Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr. That bundle deal ends later today, so get purchasing (and you can pay through Amazon payments)!
While comiXology has supported SPX, and the Ignatz before, this is a first for Amazon, who has previously supported the Eisners, the awards from San Diego Comic-Con. This is a huge boost for independent comics, and particularly the Small Press Expo, a gem of a convention.
ComiXology was purchased by Amazon earlier this year, and now you have two heavy weights (part of one family) showing much love for the indie comics scene. While some have been worried about the acquisition, moves like this show why it is a good thing, and overall, the purchase of comiXology by Amazon is a positive for the comics community as a whole.