Comics A.M. | Direct market tops $40 million in October

Comics | John Jackson Miller slices and dices the October numbers for the direct market, noting that overall dollar orders for comic books, trade paperbacks, and magazines topped $40 million for the first time since September 2009. Orders rose 6.9 percent over September, the first month of DC's relaunch. "While that may sound counter-intuitive, it isn't when you consider that all those first issues continued to have reorders selling through October," Miller writes. "Retailers with an eye on the aftermarket may also have some sense that second issues are historically under-ordered — something which goes at least back to the experience of G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero #2 in the 1980s, which wound up being much more valuable than its first issue." [The Comichron]

Passings | Tom Spurgeon reports that author Les Daniels has passed away. Daniels wrote horror fiction and nonfiction books on the comic industry, which include Comix: A History of the Comic Book in America, Marvel: Five Fabulous Decades of the World's Greatest Comics and DC Comics: Sixty Years of the World’s Favorite Comic Book Heroes. [The Comics Reporter]

Creators | Grant Morrison talks about coming back to Superman after his work on the character in All-Star Superman: "After I‘d done that story, it was kind of the end of Superman’s life, and I was interested in going back to the roots of the character, and his social and political roots, and maybe doing a take that dealt with him as a young man, but I didn’t really have any plans for that until Dan [DiDio] came over and then when he gave me the opportunity, and he said that they were willing to even change the continuity, and to let some new ideas and energy into it, it seemed perfect for that." [CNN Geek Out]

Creators | Brian Azzarello and Cliff Chiang discuss their work on the relaunched Wonder Woman and her recently revealed new daddy."If you went to the average person on the street and showed them a picture of Wonder Woman they would recognize her immediately," Chiang said. "Ask those people her origin story and some of them might know the clay story but many, many others would not know that at all. That’s not a problem you have with Superman or Batman; everyone knows their origin. By making her the daughter of Zeus, we’ve gotten a big driving force behind our story. It gives her a motivation and it’s a key to character that we now feel is very important. She’s a child of the gods who defends us from them, in the same way that Superman is from another planet trying to save humanity and Batman is the orphan who is protecting us from the criminals who killed his parents." [Hero Complex]

Creators | The student-run Observer reports on a lecture given by Notre Dame alum and Marvel editor Bill Rosemann: "The comic books industry is many fields coming together at once. It's never been just about art. Instead, it's this glorious American collision of art, commerce and history." [Observer]

Creators | Andrew Chambliss discusses his work on Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season 9 and Dollhouse. [TFAW]

Creators | Ian Flynn talks about his approach to writing the New Crusaders, the Red Circle reboot due from Archie Comics due next year: "The Red Circle characters are brimming with untapped potential. We've seen how other super hero properties have grown and matured from their silly, sometimes zany origins into the blockbusters they are today. The Red Circle heroes are no different. They have powers, desires and stories that can be fascinating when run through today's filter of modern sensibilities. Everything is so wild and free, it'll be a lot of fun to make it all work in one coherent world." [ComicsAlliance]

Conventions | Dave Roman reports in from Quai des Bulles, the second-largest comics convention in France. [The Beat]

Manga | Deb Aoki talks to Hikaru Sasahara, the CEO of Digital Manga Publishing, about his company's acquisition of Yaoi-Con and the progress of the Digital Manga Guild, their experiment in online publication using amateur translators and editors. [About.com]

Review | Jocelyne Allen reviews Adam Hines's Duncan the Wonder Dog: Show One, which won the Lynd Ward graphic novel prize earlier this year. [Brain Vs Book]

Awards | Irish Comics News appears to have only been around for a few months, but they have already given their first awards, which were based on a popular vote. And here's a nice touch: The award for Best Mainstream Published Irish Writer went to Garth Ennis, who won by a single vote—and that vote was cast by another nominee, Nick Roche. [Irish Comics News]

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