Free Comic Book Day, 2014!

Even the giant mutant hunting robot is reading.  That's what Free Comic Book Day is about.

Even the giant mutant hunting robot is reading. That’s what Free Comic Book Day is about.

Free Comic Book Day, taking place on the first Saturday of May, is an annual promotional effort by the North American comic book industry to help bring new readers into independent comic book stores. Free Comic Book Day started in 2002, and has been an annual event of increasing size since then. On Free Comic Book Day, participating comic book store retailers give away specially printed copies of free comic books, and some offer cheaper back issues and other items to anyone who visits their establishments. In addition to comic books, some stores also give away other merchandise, such as mini posters and other movie tie-in memorabilia.

Sounds like a pretty good day, huh? The future of this medium that we love, Comics, is dependent upon bringing new readers in to stores, so that the comics themselves, and not just the tie-in good and film events, make some revenue. So…not only is it a pretty nice thing, but it is a vital effort by the industry to bring new readers into the fold.

To that end Free Comic Book Day has three main purposes:

To introduce everyone to the joys of reading comics.
To call back former comic book readers.
To thank current comic book buyers for their continued support.

The various incentive books that are presented to kick off “events” or be a bonus to longtime readers are a direct outgrowth of the third category, whereas movie tie-in books are a feature of the first. Most of the time, of the offered issues, there is something for everyone, of all ages.

Publishers produce special edition comics geared to attracting new non-comic readers. There is a wide diversity of comics available, from traditional comics fare like Archie and Disney, super-heroes from Marvel and DC, manga from Tokyopop, as well as work from independent publishers.

In its first six years, more than 2000 retailers in more than 30 countries gave away more than 12 million Free Comic Book Day special-edition comic books. The success of the promotion rests with each participating retailer. Most participants agree that Free Comic Book Day has been part of a healthier comics market and growing comic book sales over the last several years.

For information about where to find a retailer near you, click the official link! For the more specific Store locator, click this link! For that matter, to have Stan Lee tell you about it, click here!

On that note…Excelsior!

Oh…and a bonus post tomorrow!

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