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Marvel, Simon & Schuster, and Mark Waid Want to teach you How to Create Comics the Marvel Way

Marvel Entertainment and Simon & Schuster are collaborating to provide an insider’s look at the unique methods that have made Marvel storytelling an integral part of modern pop culture. Marvel Comics and modern industry legend Mark Waid will take readers on a new journey of creative discovery with the all-new guide for modern comic creators: How to Create Comics the Marvel Way, available July 5, 2022.

The instructional book opens with an original cover from Marvel legend Humberto Ramos and features iconic Marvel characters throughout every stage of the production process from pencil roughs, inking, coloring, as well as how comic book illustration has been revolutionized through advances in digital/desktop technology.

With over 30 years in the comics industry as a writer, editor, publisher, journalist and retailer, no one is more qualified to deconstruct the magic of Marvel storytelling than Mark Waid. Drawing from his own experiences of working with dozens of artists and crafting some of the most beloved Marvel stories of all time, Waid takes readers inside every stage of the collaborative process. Throughout the book, Waid not only explains the technical details of comics creation, but also highlights the unique approach that has made Marvel the favorite publisher of comics readers for over six decades. The result is a graphic fiction masterclass that can be enjoyed by aspiring comics creators and new Marvel readers alike.

How to Create Comics the Marvel Way will serve as the ultimate primer for creators at every level with invaluable advice and an in-depth look at the industry’s current approach to producing comics. Readers and fans can pre-order the book now and get it when it’s available on July 5, 2022!

How to Create Comics the Marvel Way

The Justice Department Moves to Block the Sale of Simon & Schuster to Penguin Random House

Simon & Schuster

An anti-trust lawsuit has been filed by the Justice Department to stop ViacomCBS‘ sale of Simon & Schuster to Penguin Random House. The Justice Department claims that the sale would give Penguin Random House too much power over the book business.

Announced in November 2020, the sale was for $2.1 billion between ViacomCBS and Bertelsmann, Penguin Random House’s parent company.

Attorney General Merrick Garland said:

Books have shaped American public life throughout our nation’s history, and authors are the lifeblood of book publishing in America. But just five publishers control the U.S. publishing industry. If the world’s largest book publisher is permitted to acquire one of its biggest rivals, it will have unprecedented control over this important industry. American authors and consumers will pay the price of this anticompetitive merger – lower advances for authors and ultimately fewer books and less variety for consumers.

The lawsuit is also an attempt to send a signal across the book industry that has had issues with collusion in the past.

The Justice Department claims that this would be a “monopsony,” a marketplace that has been squeezed due to consolidation in the buyers.

As we said during the initial announcement:

The deal has a ripple effect in the comic industry as well. Simon & Schuster is the exclusive distributor of BOOM! StudiosOni Press, and Rebellion to bookstores. Penguin Random House is the exclusive distributor of DC ComicsDark Horse, and IDW Publishing graphic novels to bookstores. The merger consolidates a distribution channel which has a potentially negative impact on negotiations between publishers and distributors but creates a more favorable position between the distributor and retailers.

Ironically, the comic industry has had concerns over distribution monopolies for years with Diamond Comic Distributors cornering the direct market to comic shops for years until 2020. DC Comics ended their exclusive deal with Diamond splitting distribution between UCS Comic Distributors and Lunar Distribution. DC ended its distribution through UCS creating a new “monopoly” through Lunar and creating a $500 minimum monthly order. Now, if this merger goes through, the bookstore distribution options will shrink narrowing choices though we’ll see if similar concerns are raised by the industry as have been raised in the past.

Since November, the distribution space for comics have shifted even further with Marvel going exclusive with Penguin Random House. Heavy Metal, AHOY Comics, Source Point Press, Vault Comics, AWA Studios, Red 5 Comics, and Behemoth have also signed with Simon & Schuster regarding distribution as well.

Review: Barb: The Last Berzerker Vol. 1

Barb is the last berzerker after the rest are captured by the evil Witch Head. Armed with the Shadow Blade, she must go get help to free her friends and stop Witch Head!

Story/Art: Dan Abdo and Jason Patterson

Get your copy now! To find a comic shop near you, visit http://www.comicshoplocator.com or call 1-888-comicbook or digitally and online with the links below.


Simon & Schuster provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review
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Graphic Policy’s Top Comic Picks this Week!


Wednesdays (and now Tuesdays) are new comic book day! Each week hundreds of comics are released, and that can be pretty daunting to go over and choose what to buy. That’s where we come in

Each week our contributors choose what they can’t wait to read this week or just sounds interesting. In other words, this is what we’re looking forward to and think you should be taking a look at!

Find out what folks think below, and what comics you should be looking out for this week.

Adventures of the Mad Tsar (Black Panel Press) – Collecting the three volume French graphic novel about a deposed Tsar who’s replaced with a lookalike. Watch our review.

Aquaman: The Becoming #1 (DC Comics) – We know the character has a big future ahead in the DC Universe, so we’re intrigued how he gets there.

Barb the Last Berzerker Vol. 1 (Simon & Schuster) – Barb is a Berzerker and will need to defeat Witch Head to save her friends and land.

Batman #113/Batman Secret Files: Miracle Molly #1 (DC Comics) – “Fear State” has been solid so far and Miracle Molly and intriguing new addition to the characters of Gotham. We’re excited to dive into each new chapter of this solid “Bat Event”.

Bunny Mask #4 (AfterShock) – A nice mix of horror and psychological mystery, the series has us guessing what will happen next and what’s going on.

Death of Doctor Strange #1 (Marvel) – Yes, we know this is only until the next movie but we’d be lying if we weren’t intrigued, especially since Marvel seems to be all over in their focus on the “magical” side of their comic universe.

Eat the Rich #2 (BOOM! Studios) – An outsider enters the world of the rich… who might be cannibals?!

Fist of the North Star Vol. 2 (VIZ Media) – A new edition of the classic manga series in a nice hardback cover. It’s a martial arts version of Mad Max and a lot of fun.

Frontiersman #1 (Image Comics) – An intriguing new series about a former superhero coaxed out of retirement by an environmentalist group. As a spokesperson, old enemies return and new enemies make him a target.

Moon Knight #3 (Marvel) – The lack of focus on Moon Knight’s Jewish roots is a bit frustrating (a Jewish hero “enslaved” by an Egyptian God writes itself) but the series has been impressive. A new villain shows a lot of potential as the character’s status quo gets shaken up before his show debuts.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: The Last Ronin #4 (IDW Publishing) – It’s been a bit but we’re excited for the series’ return and our return to the world of the last Turtle.

X-Men: Onslaught Revelation #1 (Marvel) – Onslaught. Nuff said.

Weekly Preview! We Serial Wake with Out of Body Pizazz

There’s a lot of comics coming out this week to be covered right here. Check out some of what we’ll be reviewing and this is only the beginning!

This week’s reviews include:

  • Out of Body #1 (AfterShock)
  • Pizazz (Aladdin)
  • Serial #4 (Abstract Studio)
  • Wake: The Hidden History of Women Led Slave Revolts (Simon & Schuster)

AfterShock, Aladdin, and Simon & Schuster provided Graphic Policy with FREE copies for review

Heavy Metal Partners with Simon & Schuster for Distribution

Heavy Metal

Simon & Schuster signing bookstore distribution agreements with comic publishers have been coming in fast and the juggernaut has another one to add to its growing percent of the market. Heavy Metal Entertainment has entered into an agreement with Simon & Schuster. The deal covers the United States, Canada, and other international territories and began February 1, 2021.

Lovers of genre content and longtime Heavy Metal devotees will surely be excited by this distribution partnership as the publisher continues to expand into the world of prose, graphic novels and ebooks. Heavy Metal views the partnership as a huge step forward in continued marketplace growth.

Among the first wave of titles to be released under this agreement will be collected editions of Heavy Metal’s current best-selling comic titles, including Dylan Sprouse’s Sun Eater, and Dan Fogler’s Brooklyn Gladiator and Fishkill. Simon & Schuster will also be printing the enhanced second edition (“The Galactic Edition”) of CEO Matthew Medney’s best-selling, hard science fiction novel Beyond Kuiper: The Galactic Star Alliance, featuring 60 pages of new content. Additionally, the first volume of the eagerly-anticipated Taarna, The Last Taarakian series will be released, featuring Heavy Metal’s iconic heroine, in addition to some to-be-announced prose projects from celebrated creators.

AHOY Comics Signs a Bookstore Distribution Deal with Simon & Schuster

AHOY Comics is the latest comic publisher to sign a deal with Simon & Schuster to deliver their releases to bookstores as of March 2021. The publisher also announced its fall publication schedule which will include trade paperback editions of several of its comics. Diamond will continue to distribute AHOY’s titles into comic shops.

AHOY also announced its fall publication schedule which will also include trade paperback versions of several of its popular series from earlier in the year: Happy Hour, The Wrong Earth: Night and Day, Edgar Allan Poe’s Snifter of Blood, and Second Coming: Only Begotten Son.

Publication dates and summaries for AHOY’s fall titles are below:


(W) Peter Milligan, (A) Michael Montenat
August 25, 2021 (Bookstores: September 7, 2021)

In future America, being happy isn’t just a right—it’s the law. While the Joy Police brutally enforce the cheery code, two young people go on the run, searching for a haven of melancholy where they can safely bask in the blues. A timely tale by superstar writer Peter Milligan (X-Statix, The Prisoner) and artist Michael Montenat (Dominion, Hellraiser Annual).


(W) Tom Peyer, (A) Jamal Igle / Juan Castro
September 8, 2021 (Bookstores: September 21, 2021)

The vengeance-dealing Dragonfly sticks it to the man! The acrobatic sleuth Dragonflyman assists the police! These alternate-earth versions of the same masked crimefighter meet face-to-face for the first time in this new series by the original creators of the smash-hit The Wrong Earth! Will their impossible encounter result in a team-up…  or an all-out war?



(W) Paul Cornell, Dean Motter, (A) Russ Braun
September 22, 2021 (Bookstores: October 5, 2021)

Edgar Allan Poe’s Snifter of Blood continues to cheaply exploit the great Edgar Allan Poe’s reputation! The collection combines 6 issues worth of anthologies including a take on how the 1% would fare in “Masque of the Red Death” by Tom Peyer and Alan Robinson, Sherlock Holmes’s investigation of murders from two Poe stories by Paul Cornell (Doctor Who) and Greg Scott, a update on the “Tell-Tale Heart” and more. Oh, and did we mention the new Cereal Monsters story from Mark Russell and Peter Snejberg?



(W) Mark Russell, (A) Richard Pace, Leonard Kirk
November 3, 2021 (Bookstores: November 16, 2021)

The long-awaited second volume of the book ComicsBeat called “the world’s most dangerous comic book and the most lovely.” As superhero Sunstar anticipates becoming a father, he agonizes over how—and if—he can use his powers to make a better world for his child. And as Jesus Christ loses his bedroom to a nursery, he struggles to find a new place in a society that distorts and exploits his message for profit.

The first volumes of THE WRONG EARTH and SECOND COMING are available now for reorder from Simon & Schuster, along with all other titles in the AHOY Comics backlist.


Source Point Press and Simon & Schuster Announce a distribution deal

Source Point Press/Simon & Schuster

Simon & Schuster, Inc. has entered into a distribution agreement with Source Point Press. Under the agreement, Simon & Schuster will handle sales and distribution worldwide beginning March 1, 2021.

The deal allows Source Point Press’ line of graphic novels and prose novels will be available to booksellers around the globe. It’s the latest publisher to announced a distribution deal with Simon & Schuster. Vault Comics, AWA Studios, and Red 5 Comics have all announced similar distribution deals in recent weeks.

In May 2020, Source Point Press announced they were dropping Diamond as their comic distributor choosing to go direct to retailers through Corner Box. Since then, the publisher has mixed things up and has launched numerous “box” initiatives to sell directly to consumers as well.

Vault Comics Announces a Global Distribution Deal with Simon & Schuster

Vault Comics

Simon & Schuster, Inc. has entered into a distribution agreement with Vault Comics. Under the agreement, Simon & Schuster will handle distribution worldwide beginning May 1st, 2021.

Vault CEO & Publisher Damian Wassel in the announcement said:

We are excited to partner with Simon & Schuster to distribute our books to booksellers everywhere. As Vault continues to expand our catalog, break ground in film, television, and other media, and reach new fans, we know we’ll be able to count on the team at S&S to support our growth for years to come.

Vault titles will be available to order through Simon and Schuster beginning May 1st. Direct market retailers will still be able to order Vault titles through Diamond Comic Distributors. 

AWA Studios Partners with Simon & Schuster for Book Trade Distribution

Simon & Schuster, Inc. has entered into a book market distribution agreement with Artists Writers & Artisans Studios (AWA Studios). 

Under the agreement, Simon & Schuster will handle book market sales and distribution to the United States and Canada beginning March 1, 2021. However, AWA Studios will continue their direct market sales and distribution with Diamond Comic Distributors.

AWA Upshot
Almost American
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