This week's announcement that all Tor books will be DRM-free by July made me wonder about what that meant for graphic novels. Tor publishes the Seven Seas line of manga, some of which have been available in digital formats for quite a while, so I checked in with managing editor Adam Arnold to see what the deal is. His answer surprised me: "I'm happy to say that all of Seven Seas' ebooks have been DRM free from the very beginning."
Most of what's available at the moment is original English language (OEL) manga such as Amazing Agent Luna and Aoi House, so I took the opportunity to ask whether Seven Seas would be publishing digital editions of licensed books as well.
"We have the majority of our OEL titles available and are working towards making our Korean licenses available as ebooks as they come out in print, Arnold replied. "My Boyfriend is a Vampire is already available, and we'll have Witch Hunter, Jack the Ripper: Hell Blade, and Lizzie Newton: Victorian Mysteries available this summer.
"For Japanese manga, it's a bit harder to make them available digitally. The biggest hurdle is that a lot of Japanese licenses simply don't have digital rights as an option, and if they do, there's no real guarantee of a certain amount of ebook sales a month so that you can break even. We are interested in expanding our ebook line-up to include Japanese titles in the future, though. So...stay tuned!"