Category Archives: Spotlight

Binc to Offer Scholarships to the Diamond Summit

BINC

The Book Industry Charitable (Binc) Foundation announced the Foundation will be offering two $750 scholarships to comic book store owners and their employees to attend the Diamond Summit in Baltimore, Maryland on October 26th and 27th, 2022. The funds may be used for travel, replacement wages, lodging, and meals. 

Binc’s communication and project manager, Judey Kalchik, will be attending the Summit this year. Kalchik encourages everyone to stop by Binc’s table to say hello, ask questions about emergency assistance and scholarships, and offer Binc suggestions and feedback. Binc is always looking to hear from comic shop owners and employees.

To apply for a scholarship to the Summit, applicants must meet the following criteria:

  • The applicant’s store must be in the U.S. and either a retail bricks-and-mortar store owned by an entity a substantial portion of whose revenue is derived from the bricks-and-mortar sale of books/comics, -or- a mobile or pop-up store with an ongoing overhead investment that is open to the general public and maintains an annual average of 30 hours per week with an employee present.
  • The applicant must be a regular part-time or full-time employee or owner of a comic shop.
  • Applicants must be currently employed and have 90 days of continuous employment with the comic shop.

Comic store owners and their employees can apply for a scholarship here.

Applications are now open. The deadline to apply is October 3rd, 2022 by 5:00 pm ET.

Dynamite & Near Mint Condition Team-Up for Live Sale/Auction With Proceeds Benefiting Rachel Pollack

The Boys

Dynamite and Dynamic Forces are teaming up with superstar comics YouTuber Near Mint Condition this weekend for a live claim show and auction offering fans lots of key graphic novels, rare variants, key issues, and more – all with a portion of proceeds going to a great cause, helping out creative legend Rachel Pollack.

The livestreamed sale and auction will take place this Sunday September 25 at noon Eastern Standard Time on the Near Mint Condition YouTube channel.

20% of all the sales from the combined Dynamite and Near Mint Condition sides will be contributed to the GoFundMe of legendary comics creator Rachel Pollack. The Time Breakers author made waves as the first out transgender creator in the industry, and reflected that experience in some of her work like the critically acclaimed and soon to be reprinted Doom Patrol. Beyond comics, she is known as one of the preeminent voices worldwide when it comes to the art, history, and practice of tarot. Unfortunately Rachel is currently experiencing a resurgence of cancer and is dealing with the associated medical and support costs. The comics industry and fans have come together to offer support, and people can check out more info or directly donate here.

The Near Mint Condition crew of the Uncanny Omar and Astonishing Melanie are joining forces with the Awesome Amy and Not-Necessary Nick Barrucci to bring fans and followers a range of cool items to buy and bid on to add to their collections. There will be countless collections, hardcovers, trade paperbacks, and more. Nick is also bringing a selection of rare, great condition Silver Age X-Men key issues, including #27, 31, 34, 36, 37, 38, 40 and some Bronze Age highlights like #118, 119, 128. Ultra-rare Dynamite variants like metal and virgin covers will be on offer. Plus comissioned original art covers on blanks.

With the Dynamite and Dynamic Forces vaults on hand, fans can tune in and watch out for any additional surprises or try making requests. All are welcome to swing through and say hello or just hang out too!

Update: Victory Comics needs our help after Burglary

Update: Individuals have been caught attempting to sell the raw books stolen from Victory. The raw books have been returned to their rightful owner.

Victory Comics, located in Falls Church just outside of Washington, DC, needs our help.

The store closed at 10pm on Monday, September 19 and at 6:45am on Tuesday, police responded to a call from the building. The comic and game shop’s front door was shattered and an estimated $40,000 worth of comics was stolen.

The items stolen are reported to be graded comics as well as raw ungraded comics, the robbers knew what to go for it sounds like.

Anyone with information should contact the City of Falls Church Police at 703-241-5053 (TTY 711) or police@fallschurchva.gov.

A reward of $5,000 by the owner has been announced for information leading to the arrest according to posts in various groups. Below is a list of what was taken as well as photos of the damage (photos via Facebook). Please help spread the word to make sure the robbers have no where they can go these comics won’t be recognized.

Exclusive: This Highball Spotify Playlist is the Perfect list to Get Drunk in Space Too

This Wednesday September 7th AHOY Comics releases Highball #1, the first issue of their latest hilarious series about a space pilot who’s the best shot in the galaxy—except he can only hit the target when he’s dead drunk. By writer Stuart Moore (Captain Ginger), artist Fred Harper (Snelson: Comedy is Dying), colorist Lee Loughridge, and letterer Rob Steen, Highball‘s first issue features a cover by co-creator Fred Harper and a variant cover by David Rubin (Cosmic Detective).

To get ready for the upcoming release, we have what we’re told is the perfect list to get drunk in space too!

This is the perfect playlist for throttling back your little fighter ship and blasting the hell out of some aliens. It’s as if Highball and his disturbingly violent cronies beamed it back through time, straight into the fevered mind of David ‘Clink Clink’ Hyde. Crank it up, pour yourself a nice steaming Hot Jupiter, and go Swinging on a Star.

Stuart Moore

So kick back, pour yourself your favorite cocktail, and relax to some tunes and get ready for Highball #1 when it comes to comic shelves this Wednesday!

Will Eisner’s A Contract With God to be adapted into a Broadway Musical

A Contract With God

TEG+ has acquired the stage rights to Will Eisner’s cherished graphic novel A Contract With God and is adapting it into a Broadway musical. It will feature new and original songs written by a group of multi-platinum songwriters and Grammy Award winners composed of Sam Hollander, Lisa Loeb, Matisyahu, Ryan Miller (of Guster), and Jill Sobule. Hollander will also serve as music producer.

First published in 1978, A Contract With God is widely recognized as the very first — and also considered by many as the greatest — graphic novel in history, penned by one of the greatest cartoonists of all time. The novel consists of four interweaving stories revolving around the lives, struggles and dreams of infinitely relatable New Yorkers — many Jewish and many immigrants — living in a fictional tenement house. All of the members of the songwriting team are Jewish musicians and composers wishing to honor their Jewish heritage and the Jewish legacy of this masterwork. The team is about to enter writing and recording sessions, produced by Hollander. TEG+ is currently in the process of securing a book writer for the musical adaptation.

TEG+ is also in development for a limited TV series based on the graphic novel The Fifth Beatle: The Brian Epstein Story. The Fifth Beatle is the only project about Brian Epstein, and the only non-documentary Beatles bio project, to have secured their music/songs.

The Return of Mark Hamill – A Comic Book and it’s Free!

The never-before-told, mostly true story of Mark Hamill’s early days working the Jack in the Box drive-thru and his bittersweet departure. The Return of Mark Hamill is a story of fate, friendship and redemption, decades in the making. It’s also totally free! Yes, you can get a digital or physical comic totally for free from Jack in the Box. Shipping takes about 5-10 business days but this is your chance to get this rather quirky comic!

The Return of Mark Hamill

Tokyopop Joins JetBlue’s “Soar With Reading” Initiative

Tokyopop has announced their participation in JetBlue’s annual Soar with Reading initiative, which provides free books to children who need them most. Joining the program for the first time, Tokyopop will be including three titles available for selection by participating families; The Nightmare Before Christmas (softcover edition)The Nightmare Before Christmas – Zero’s Journey, Book 1, and Kamo: Pact with the Spirit World, Volume 1.

This summer, Soar with Reading landed in Newark, NJ. This award-winning literacy initiative tackles the issue of “book deserts,” areas with limited access to age-appropriate books. Since 2011, JetBlue has donated nearly $3+ million worth of books to children in areas of need.

JetBlue, with the help of multiple publishers who have titles chosen for participation will be bringing books to children in the Newark area through digital vending machines which will distribute books starting July 1 through August 31, 2022, free of charge.

The digital vending machines this year are large format televisions with touchscreen interfaces that allow children to hand select up to six titles. Orders are gathered and shipped back to the host location for distribution a few weeks later.

The vending machines include books in English and Spanish that provide parents from a range of backgrounds the opportunity to read aloud and along with their children. Research shows that greater adult support for reading enhances children’s opportunities to learn.

David Zaslav’s donations paint a very different political picture

In the last 48 hours Warner Bros. Discovery’s CEO David Zaslav has been painted as a villain. With the cancellation of Batgirl and Scoob sequel, as reports of lack of diversity at Discovery under his leadership, Zaslav is being depicted as a right-wing stooge.

Zaslav himself hasn’t helped matters stating that CNN would feature more right-wing viewpoints planting a flag for the center but what can readily available data tell us about the executive.

While we don’t know his political party identification right now, we can look up Zaslav’s donations to candidates and PACs. That tells us a very different story than what’s come out in the media.

11 contributions have been made in 2021 and 2022 by David Zaslav to very few. In total $48,200 has been contributed to 11 entities total.

  • NCTA – THE INTERNET & TELEVISION ASSOCIATION POLITICAL ACTION COMMITTEE (NCTAPAC) – $10,000
  • DISCOVERY COMMUNICATIONS, LLC PAC – $5,000
  • JOBS, EDUCATION, & FAMILIES FIRST JEFF PAC – $5,000
  • JEFFRIES VICTORY FUND – $10,800
  • FRIENDS OF SCHUMER – $5,800
  • JEFFRIES FOR CONGRESS – $5,800
  • ZIMMERMAN FOR CONGRESS – $5,800

That’s only three politicians donated to and all are Democrats.

Robert Zimmerman, Rep. Hakeem Jeffries, and Sen. Chuck Schumer. The PAC and Victory fund are also Jeffries’. Zaslav is listed as living in New York and all three are politicians from New York. Zimmerman is running to be elected, Jeffries doesn’t seem to sit on any relevant committees, and… it’s Schumer. These don’t come off as donations involving “business” but might be people Zaslav actually supports. I’d lean Zaslav’s politics aren’t right-wing based on this, he’s just an out of touch suit.

If nothing else, it’ll be interesting to see if the list of donations grows and who might benefit.

DC reveals its new website focused on the entire brand

DC has revealed its new website. It’s not just a new design but an entire new url to go with it. Out is dccomics.com and in is dc.com. The new site gives fans easy access to all things DC, from fan-first news to DC Universe Infinite, DC Shop, DC Community, and DC on HBO Max. The new homepage will feature weekly drops of new video content, editorial deep dives, fan discussions, digital experiences, and more, and fans will now access everything from DC Universe Infinite to DC Community with a single, unified user profile.

Already there’s crumbling of the drop of “comics” but for those who have paid attention, DC stopped using “comics” in its branding many months ago. It allows for potential better cross promotion and prevents information dropped into a silo. Now those who search for Sandman will hopefully not just learn about the upcoming tv show but be able to explore the same site and find comics, t-shirts, and more. At least, that in theory is how it should happen.

As said in the press release:

DC.com will be the home for breaking news and deep dives on the latest DC releases across comic books, film, TV, video games – all in one place!

DC.com will expand to include weekly video content ranging from trailers for upcoming releases to look backs at some of DC’s defining moments across all mediums, plus exclusive talent interviews that you won’t be able to find anywhere else, including:

  • Super Scenes – Videos highlighting fan-favorite moments and characters from across DC’s storied history in all mediums dropped every Tuesday & Friday.
  • Tuesday Trivia – Every Tuesday DC Community will host a themed trivia event where all fans are welcome, but even the most loyal DC fan may be stumped.
  • Riddler Wednesday – DC Community will post a riddle every Wednesday for members to try and solve either by themselves or together as a group.
  • DC’s House of Listery – Posted every Thursday, DC.com will curate a new list of essential moments, characters and content for fans to explore, add to and debate.
  • Monthly Deep Dives on everything happening with your favorite characters, Batman, Superman, and Wonder Woman across the DC Universe.
  • Digital Experiences, including My DC Origin Story, where fans can take part in an interactive story and discover where they belong among the super teams of the DC Universe.

DC Universe Infinite, DC’s digital comic book service, will be celebrating the launch of DC.com with new collections highlighting fan-favorite storylines, creators and tie-ins. DC’s Book Club offers curated selections each month with titles available as free to read for registered users, exclusive downloads, and discussions through DC Community. Fans can get ready for the upcoming August Book Club selection, the seminal The Sandman Vol. 1: Preludes & Nocturnes, just in time for the streaming series debut on Netflix.

DC’s social accounts are also being refreshed to feature the @DC handle across most platforms to coincide with the DC.com launch. All DC branded social handles will continue to roll out new content from across the Multiverse for fans to engage with.

Accessible to all registered DC.com users, the DC Community hub will be unveiling a new live chat feature so that fans can connect in real time. Also added to the DC Community site are new badges and, soon to come, more flair options and avatars that community members can use to customize their user profiles, including options like Batman Fan, First Post, Top Fan, and more. Registered users can also enter to be featured as the Community Member of the Month, highlighting their favorite DC comic book picks. With “convention season” in full swing, the DC Community site will also be the place to show off fans’ artistic abilities in the new cosplay and fanworks gallery.

To celebrate the new website, DC Shop will introduce Premium Collectibles and Limited Edition items as well as new first to market apparel designs for Harley Quinn, Black Adam, and Shazam! Fury of the Gods and accessories including Batman themed LED Lights, Luggage Backpacks, Books and more. The improved Customer Experience will make it easier than ever before to find products featuring your favorite Super Heroes and Super-Villains with dedicated character pages.

Binc Announces Return of Macmillan Professional Development Scholarships Program

BINC Foundation

The Book Industry Charitable (Binc) Foundation and Macmillan Publishers have announced the return of the Macmillan Booksellers Professional Development Scholarship. This scholarship program provides $500 to booksellers traditionally underrepresented within the industry to attend their region’s fall trade show. Due to Covid-19, this program was paused in 2020 and 2021.

This scholarship that will strengthen the bookselling industry by providing support to booksellers already working hard to positively impact their communities. 

Each scholarship can be used to cover the cost of travel, lodging, and meals for one bookseller at each regional independent bookseller association’s fall trade show.

To be eligible to apply for a scholarship, a bookseller must have worked in a bookstore as a regular full or part-time employee for a minimum of 90 days. The bookstore must be a member in good standing of one of the regional trade associations. The applicant will answer three brief essay questions and the winners will be selected via an anonymous review process by a panel of publishers from Macmillan and members of the Binc program committee.

Booksellers can find out more details and apply at https://forms.gle/H1FZ2R2haaPvjmhi7

Eligibility
Applicants must fall into one of the categories and criteria below. 

Categories:

  • People of color, defined as people of African/African American, Asian/Pacific Islander, Latin American, Middle Eastern, or Native American/Indigenous descent
  • People who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, or queer
  • People with disabilities (includes but is not limited to physical, sensory, cognitive, intellectual, or developmental disabilities, chronic conditions, and mental illnesses).

Criteria:

  • The applicant’s store must be a member of one of the regional IBA organizations.
  • The applicant must be a regular part-time or full-time employee of the bookstore.
  • Applicant must be currently employed and have 90 days of continuous employment with the bookstore.

Applications are now open. The deadline to apply is August 15th, 2022 by 5:00 pm ET.

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