“I’m sorry you feel that way,” she said, “but we’ve had people read whole issues before and not buy them.”
OF COURSE YOU HAVE. YOU’RE A COMIC BOOK SHOP.
— Chris Schweizer, sharing why he quit patronizing a particular comics shop
Tom Spurgeon has a weekly feature on The Comics Reporter called “This Isn’t a Library: Notable Releases to the Comics Direct Market.” Because of the cantankerous, old shopkeeper it creates in my head, it makes me smile every time I read it. I wouldn’t want to meet that person in real life, though, and I especially wouldn’t want to shop in his store.
The place I shop is awesome, and one of the many reasons is that they’re okay with customers giving books the old flip-through. Schweizer’s right that in the age of easy and cheap online retailers, one of the few advantages brick-and-mortar shops have is the ability to check out a book before you buy it. Well, that and the joy of interacting face to face with friendly, knowledgeable employees. You know: the kind that don’t make you feel bad for enjoying some comics with your daughter in the store.