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Comics A.M. | 'The Walking Dead' leads October bookstore sales

Graphic novels | The best word to describe October's BookScan Top 20 is "diverse." No one publisher or genre dominated the list, which tracks graphic novel sales in bookstores. The list boasts four entries from perennial bestseller The Walking Dead, including the first and third volume of the massive Walking Dead Compendium; five volumes of manga, including the final volume of Naruto and the first three volumes of Tokyo Ghoul; two Star Wars collections; two kid-friendly titles, the first volume of Avatar: The Last Airbender: Smoke and Shadow and the second volume of Lumberjanes; two Batman books; and Adrian Tomine's Killing and Dying. If any one publisher dominated, it was Image Comics, with six books on the list, including the four Walking Dead titles, the fifth volume of Saga, and the first volume of Bitch Planet. [ICv2]

Conventions | Tree City Comic Con isn't returning to Boise, Idaho, for a second year. "I don’t think Boise was quite ready," said director Kevin Hansen. "We took a hit. People just didn’t spend money." One rookie mistake was bringing in 28 celebrities for the inaugural event, which proved to be expensive and not terribly effective. "People were just kind of looking at them like animals at the zoo," he said. "You’d see Lindsay Wagner sitting at a table, and there’s nobody in line, and so we had people walk up and talk to her for 10 minutes." It's possible there may be a Boise con next year, but Hansen isn't sure he will be affiliated with it. [Idaho Statesman]

Passings | Cartoonist Rob White died Wednesday of mesothelioma, a type of cancer that results from asbestos exposure. He was 70. White had a varied career as an illustrator and fine artist, and was also an editorial cartoonist for several papers in Long Island, New York, including The Suffolk Times and its sister publications, The News-Review of Riverhead and The Shelter Island Reporter. His first published work was a wine label, and he not only illustrated singer Harry Chapin's book Looking…Seeing — Poems and Lyrics by Harry Chapin, he also served as Chapin's sound man and road manager for many years. [Suffolk Times]

Creators | It doesn't get any more Brooklyn than this: The Brooklyn newspaper interviews Carroll Gardens-based artist Dean Haspiel about his new graphic novel, Beef with Tomato, which he describes as "A love letter to Brooklyn." [The Brooklyn Paper]

Creators | Leslie Stein talks about her new graphic novel Bright-Eyed at Midnight. [The Paris Review]

Creators | Cartoonist Keith Knight discussed his work in a talk titled "They Shoot Black People, Don't They" as part of a series of discussions at the University of Delaware about race relations. He spoke about the way black creators tend to receive a lot of attention in February, Black History Month, and not so much the rest of the year. "I would get up early, wait to get the check and then cash the check," he said. "Then, I started writing back and telling people that I work the other 11 months of the year, too." [UDaily]

Creators | Henry Chamberlain conducts an audio interview with Chris Hunt, creator of the new crime noir comic Carver: A Paris Story. [Comics Grinder]

Comics | Sean Michael Robinson discusses the process, and necessity, of restoration for the artwork being collected and published in The Cerebus Archive, and he has plenty of pictures to make his point. [Moment of Cerebus]

Retailing | Russell Altomare, one of the new co-owners of Hero Time Comics in Southgate, Michigan, got his start buying and selling comics as a teenager, when he made a tidy profit on the "Death of Superman" comic. He took a break for a while, then chanced on a store that was going out of business and bought up 50 longboxes of comics. "After that I got a warehouse and started doing mail order stuff," he said. "Other than for a couple of years when the economy was down that’s how I’ve made my living my entire adult life." Then, in another case of good timing, Altomare learned that the previous owner of Hero Time was planning to close it down and after five months of negotiations, he bought it. Since then, he and co-owner Kymberly Weise have doubled the inventory, adding trade paperbacks and toys to the mix, and Altomare says that the fact that their store is small means he has the flexibility to offer customers a better deal on an item. [The News Herald]

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