With thanks to General Manager Mike Gendreau of Modern Myths of Northampton, Massachusetts, via Rich at Bleeding Cool, we learned that what DC has in store on how they plan on collecting their story lines. Mike attended the New York DC Retailer Roadshow meeting last Friday and this is what he wrote on his Facebook page:
Another change DC is making is that they won’t be ‘writing for the trade’ anymore. Writers have been told to write the story they want to write and not worry about the trade collecting. If they can tell a well-paced story in 4 issues, they’ve been told not to pad it to make it 6 issues. Editorial can worry about how it’s going to be collected. Going forward, books will be trade-collected depending on how the story fits. If a book has a 4-issue arc followed by a 3 issue arc, the trade will collect both. If it’s 2 4-issue arcs or 3 2-issue stories, those will get collected. As a side note, DC is looking into a new trade dress to represent the New 52 and a better spine design to call out information for fans.
Whoa! That is unexpected for sure!
No then, if this truly is the way that DC will go, it will be both applauded and heckled. One thing for sure is that no trade will be less that 5 or 6 issues and will probably be in the 120-135 page count range. Price? Anywhere between $17.99 and $23.99, again dependent on page count. Sure all of this is rudimentary, but what really struck me was:
Editorial can worry about how it’s going to be collected.
I don’t know if that was a direct quote from anyone on stage (John Rood, Bob Wayne, Vince Letterio, Dan DiDio or Jim Lee), but I hope they are not that nonchalant about the DC Comics Collected Editions Department. We all know that CE’s are a full time job these days (and have been for sometime now) and if DC is going to renumber, rebrand and retool years of history then they must not only reconfigure the way they will collect the 52 new books, but also make the department an equal partner when it comes to publishing I.E. Monthly, Digital and Reprint. Or at the very least, how about have the department in on the planning of the story arc so they know what to expect down the road. Perhaps they are and if so, that’s a good thing. But the way I have seen trades, from all companies, of late they look like an afterthought. I hope DC will do it differently.
Just having editorial worry about it, make me worried as a customer of trades and hardcovers.