Writing For The Trade

Last updated on July 11th, 2012 at 11:15 am

During their retailer summits Dan DiDio made a statement that Modern Myths took note of and posted in their summary on Facebook.


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.


Let that sink in for a minute.  Reading between the lines DC has been encouraging writers to pad stories.  Ouch, did someone just kick me?

It’s nice that they’re not going to drag out stories to make more money any longer; may have been best to leave that tidbit out of the presentation.

Of course it makes perfect sense to write the story you want in the number of issues you want, since DC’s focus is on selling monthly comics in print and digitally.  Regardless of story length readers of these two formats will be consuming the books in a monthly fashion.  Trade collections don’t need to exist digitally since the material is already there: instead of buying four individual issues for $1.99 each you can buy the collected story…hopefully for less than $7.96.  Who knows if we’ll see bonus material digitally; only time will tell.

I enjoyed the line about editorial worrying about how to collect the material.  Since every trade lists a collections editor, isn’t that what they’ve been doing all along?

Scott VanderPloeg Written by:

Editor-In-Chief. Scott works in I.T. but lives to eat and read. His other ramblings can be found at eBabble. Art collection at Comic Art Fans. Joe Shuster Awards Harry Kremer coordinator.

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Be First to Comment

  1. June 29, 2011

    Marvel and DC have been padding stories for years now. This doesn’t surprise me at all. We have known for a while that they do it. I am surprised that they are admitting it though.

  2. Peter
    June 29, 2011

    Decompressed storytelling is one of the reasons why comics are suffering. Look at Batman Inc. Almost every issue has been – for the most part- stand alone while feeding into the bigger picture.. and it’s more exciting and original than anything else being put to paper at the moment.
    Looking forward to the new Casanova as well..

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