21
Feb
07

GN Conference and NYCC

I leave tomorrow for NY for the above. Yaoi Press is at booth 186. I will be with Moon Yen, who just finished running Katsu Con for Yaoi Press last week. (She’s also the one who runs everythingyaoi.com, hence the site actually being updated and functional).

So many people have asked to meet with me at NYCC I can’t see how it could ever work. I had aspirations of back to back meetings at Yaoi Con last year, and as expected it didn’t happen. I hate having to rank people in order of who I will actually make time to meet with.

High on the list is Diamond UK. Yaoi Press does extremely well there. We were granted a free booth at the Bristol Comic Con, and two UK based creators are going to run it for me. I have a feeling the rep wants me to start working with a local UK printer to faclitate distribution there. That idea has been bounced around a few times. I think right now they get my titles twice a year via sea. I know I get a lot of requests to sell directly to UK stores. I’m not allowed to do that 1., and 2. it’s too expensive to ship overseas. It costs more than the price of the books.

Low on the list is a distributor who’s trying to woo Yaoi Press. I never see gn publishers do well after switching off Diamond. It would take a lot to make me consider it. Right now I’ve got a great brand manager who keeps giving me pleasant surprises of unexpected backlist sales.

Diamond is also very tolerant of the content I put out. I think a lot of new graphic novel publishers err too far on the cautious side with their age ratings. Maybe following the ‘comic book’ rating system will bite me in the ass one day. Right now I get more heartache when I have to pretend a book is ‘adults only’ due to a publisher’s label when there’s nothing remotely adult in it.

I saw a new publisher in the latest issue of Previews who had a lot of their listings in the adult supplement. When I say ‘new publisher’ I mean new to Diamond. They’ve been around, and I’d read some of the books listed in that supplement. What the Hell is adult about some of them? Because it has gay romance? Yes, some of the titles definately need to be in the pornography section, but there were some that should have had a mature readers label. What do they think about the Yaoi Press listings? Some of the books with ‘Mature Readers’ labels depict non-explicit lovemaking. Do they think I snuck them in? A case of every book I publish goes to the home office. If I was crossing the line I’d have been made aware of it a long time ago. Don’t think they aren’t mindful about this sort of thing. I had to reprint one book Yaoi Press published already because they would not distribute it. Then I had a young adult rating on Treasure Vol. 1, and they changed it to Mature Readers.

The comic book rating system I mentioned was what I grew up with as a western comic fan. What went into the Adult Supplements was pornography. ‘Alternative Comics’ like Roberta Gregory’s Bitchy-Bitch were listed in the main catalog, even the issue where she drew a graphic sex scene. It was a joke. Her art was too poor to make the scene sexy by any stretch of the imagination. Watchmen showed a penis (the blue guy, remember?). Hellblazer had a guy having sex with a woman while holding on to her breasts. Sandman always showed Dr. D with his junk hanging between his legs. It wasn’t pornography, the same as you won’t find the Sopranos DVD set in a sex shop. It’s not for children, but it’s not porn.

I don’t want to go on too much about this, because I’m still learning about this business. Maybe I’m supposed to put arbitrarily stricter ratings on my books because they have gay content. As a lesbian I resent that. I’ll do it if I have to, but I’ll resent it. Keep in mind that Yaoi Hentai sells like gangbusters. If I did call the milder titles ‘adults only’ it would likely help sales. But it will also leave readers feeling cheated.

The gn conference will be a good chance to hear what book stores consider ‘adult’ or not.

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4 Responses to “GN Conference and NYCC”


  1. February 21, 2007 at 12:45 pm

    >>Maybe I’m supposed to put arbitrarily stricter ratings on my books because they have gay content. As a lesbian I resent that. I’ll do it if I have to, but I’ll resent it.

    I know exactly how you feel.
    Taking a look at the new&improved rating system Tokyopop is showing off, there’s no mention of homosexuality anywhere in it (except for “dyke” as a slur), so I think you’re safe to keep doin’ what you’re doin’.

  2. February 21, 2007 at 7:21 pm

    What the Hell is adult about some of them? Because it has gay romance? Yes, some of the titles definately need to be in the pornography section, but there were some that should have had a mature readers label.

    I wondered this as well. Perhaps having it in the adult sections justifies a higher price point? I don’t know. :/

  3. March 2, 2007 at 9:19 pm

    Hey, I just found out my book HAS TO BE in the Adult Previews, because the Brand Manager said so. 0_0.


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