Tom Brevoort put it well the other day. “To be honest – and I’ve done this a long time and have seen a lot of books come and go – if a book doesn’t come out of the gate with a certain amount of “audience velocity”, the odds that it will start to find that audience and grow are very small. I’m not saying it doesn’t ever happen, but 98% of the time, it does not happen.”
Well, welcome to that 2%.
Hack/Slash began as a book by Tim Seeley from Devil’s Due in April 2004, opening to estimated Diamond orders of 5,598 according to this handy dandy collection of stats, a relatively high amount for a new book from a smaller publisher with no known ordering record. It must have sold because the next issue in September had an estimated order of 5,856.
After then however, estimated ordered hovered around 4,000, with an Evil Ernie crossover pushing that into the mid 6,000s.
In 2007 though an ongoing series saw that 6,000 figure become standard for the book from pretty much its entire 32 issue run.
The My First Maniac miniseries starting at Image last year saw the book launch with an estimated order number of over nine thousand, driopping under eight thousand for the next two issues. But on the fourth, something interesting happened. It jumped over the eight thousand mark.
The usual assumption is that after a first issue of a comic, there is an attrition of sales unles some kind of special event draws readers back to the book. This doesn’t to be the case here. The comic is putting on sales.
And now Hack/Slash has a new issue 1 from Image, and for the first time has estimated orders of over ten thousand, into five figures for the first time. Now sales will probably drop for the second and third issues of the new ongoing series. But look to see how well it performs then…