A quick heads-up about a charming newish tradition (and one heck of a clever book promotion idea): tomorrow is Free Comic Book Day. It’s what it says on the box — comic book stores across the U.S., Canada, and around the world will be offering readers comic books gratis.
They’re not going to be encouraging browsers to purloin handfuls off the shelves, of course, and not every comics-selling venue in the known universe will be participating. Each store that is will have its own policies for how many and which comics are up for grabs. To find a bookstore that’s getting in the giveaway spirit, you can plug your zip code into the event’s easy-to-use store locator.
Why are they doing this, other than, presumably, to bring joy to children and the young at heart? I’m not privy to the organizers’ secrets, but my guess would be that the hundreds — nay, thousands — of independent booksellers that specialize in comic books and graphic novels would like to encourage some foot traffic around their shelves. Not to mention attracting a few new devotees to their wares.
And more readers, my friends, are good for everyone who writes or draws for a living — or wants to write or draw for a living. Kudos to these independent booksellers for coming up with such a fine, creative promotional idea, and everybody, keep up the good work!