Comics A.M. | Near-mint 'X-Men' #1 sells for record $250,000

Comics | A CGC-certified 9.6 copy of 1963's The X-Men #1, by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby, fetched a private-sale record of $250,000 in a deal brokered by Pedigree Comics. That same comic, said to be one of just two certified near-mint copies in existence, went for a then-record $200,000 in March 2011; a 9.8 copy sold at auction in July 2012 for $492,938. The all-time record remains the $2.6 million paid in a 2011 auction for a near-mint copy of Action Comics #1. [CGC Comics]

Comics | Joe McCulloch puts together a nice guide to the self-published comics of Steve Ditko. [Comics Alliance]

Comics | If you want to read Franco-Belgian comics but don't know where to start, Jared Gardner has you covered, with a brief introduction and some recommended works that have been translated into English. [Public Books]

Superheroes | Self-styled "real-life superheroes" Phoenix Jones and Purple Reign talk about the practical aspects of their chosen profession, including the features of their costumes and the fact that they do, indeed, consult with lawyers. The pair, who are also husband and wife, are in London to attend the Huawei Superpowers Symposium (and also, not incidentally, help launch Huawei's new smartphone). [The Telegraph]

Creators | R.J. Woods of Moore, Oklahoma, is launching a line of comics whose hallmark is diversity; the characters include Black Clover, a superhero who retired to go into politics and is pulled back into being a superhero again, and Download, a teenage girl who develops superpowers and must learn to deal with them. [NewsOK]

Creators | Rachel Deering, the creator of Anathema, is the guest on the latest comiXologist podcast. [ComiXology Blog]

Creators | Emerging artist Sam Alden (Eighth Grade) talks to Robin McConnell about his work. [Inkstuds]

Education | U.K. cartoonist Bill Tidy (he was awarded an MBE) has been given a grant to do a series of talk-and-draw sessions designed to introduce new immigrants to British culture. "The illustrated lectures are a great way to get the message across to those who are not fluent in English," says Tidy. [Derby Telegraph]

Retailing | Jay Bardyla of Happy Harbor Comics in Edmonton, Alberta, says his focus on single-issue comics is a winning strategy for his business: "Sixty percent of our sales come from a $3 item." Best sellers include Batman, Saga, and The Walking Dead, which he says people are buying in five different formats (not to mention the bobblehead dolls and Jell-O molds). [Edmonton Journal]

Retailing | The local paper profiles Quality Comix of Prattville, Alabama, which started as an online retailer and then added a brick-and-mortar store earlier this year. [Montgomery Advertiser]

Retailing | We often read that this sort of thing is happening, but here's a first-hand account: A customer goes into a store looking for a particular graphic novel and compares prices using the Amazon app on his mobile phone. Amazon is cheaper, but he goes with the brick and mortar retailer anyway because of the level of service. [Flip the Media]

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