Fans rally for comic book store

October 28, 2010

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Hub Comics owner James Welborn sounded the alarm in an open letter dated Oct. 13, announcing a plan to raise “basic survival revenue’’ through a nine-day sale and by giving customers the option to buy “comic credit.’’ Manager Jesse Farrell said sales were down all over the country for comic books, and there was “an industrywide glut of product.’’ The store was further hurt by preordering merchandise for customers who never returned to buy it. The result: five weeks of shipments left at the loading dock for lack of funds. At that point Diamond Comic Distributors — the only major distributor — suspended the store’s account. “That lapse dropped revenue more than 30 percent in September, and it looks like another 30 percent drop in October,’’ Welborn wrote in the letter. Readers rallied, coming in to buy the existing stock. “The response has been tremendous,’’ Farrell said. “The community has been really, really supportive and I think the sale has been very helpful. . . . I think people want us to be here.’’ — Danielle Dreilinger

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