I just read some pretty big news from Heidi MacDonald at Publisher’s Weekly. Alternative Comics and Secret Acres have just joined Consortium, one of the major distributors that caters to independent publishers and independent bookstores. Alternative and Secret Acres joined the ranks of former micro-presses Uncivilized Books and Koyama Press, who have also made the move. Toon Books also joined Consortium this year, so it’s clear the distributor is interested in adding graphic novels to their catalog.
This begs the question (to me, at least), are Alternative Comics and Secret Acres still micro-presses? Many people define a micro-press by its distribution: a small publisher that does not have commercial bookstore distribution is a micro-press. My definition is a little more complicated, but I agree distribution is key. I concede that Uncivilized and Koyama are no longer micro-presses, primarily because of their bookstore distribution.
In the end, this definition might not matter. I am interested in Koyama, Uncivilized, Alternative, and Secret Acres. I’ll continue to talk about them at The Tiny Report, and I’ll probably keep them on my micro-press list too. If they’re not micro-presses, their close enough to be relevant to this conversation.
Congratulations, Alternative Comics and Secret Acres! More people need to be reading your books, and you can bet that’s what’s going to happen.