Two things. One is I think it's likely that retail of all kinds will have a shorter life moving forward, which will change comics culture as a successful shop will be one that lasts 15 years rather than 40. That's not necessarily a bad thing, but it will be different. The other is times may be tough for any business that doesn't have huge profit margins, and anything that depends on folks' loyalty above simple economic forces.
The Excelsior Awards announced their short lists this week. That's an awards program selected by school students, sort of like a few of the awards given out at Angouleme but in this case I believe constituting the entire program.
I saw a tweet about Fantagraphics marshaling some of the younger mainstream-conscious alt-talent and pairing them with older artists and existing work into a series of books under the umbrella All-Time Comics. I imagine there's a brokered announcement article out there somewhere. Josh Bayer will be writing the stories, it looks like.
It's certainly an area that these artists are exploring already in their own work and minis and on-line commentary, with concurrent interest in a variety of more mainstream sources, so a formal series makes sense. I look forward to seeing it, even though I don't ascribe the same kind of value to the referenced work. Lost/last work by Herb Trimpe interests the historian in me, that's for sure.
As a side note, one item I saw says they'll be publishing Rick Buckler, son of Rich Buckler. The elder Buckler once sued All-Time's publisher for characterizations made in The Comics Journal. That lawsuit was unsuccessful.
By Request Extra: Odod Books Kickstarter Makes Strong Move Into Its Final Phase
Uncivilized Books' campaign for its kids line Odod is heading into its final three days in much better shape than previously, climbing past the 70 percent point. The remaining amount of fundraising seems difficult but achievable to me. The books, of course, look extremely nice.