Monday, October 14, 2013

I'm so sorry that it has come to this...

Sherman and Trent

To all my Internet Friends,

Where to even start...

I'll take a page from the emails I get from Louis CK and cut to the chase and fill in the fluff after:

I need monetary help to keep Death Ray Comics open. You can help by clicking on the PayPal Donate link and sending money to as a friend.

Writing this post is definitely in my "top 10 hardest things I've ever done in my life" list.

If you don't want to help I can't blame you, and there is no need to read on.

For those of you still reading... Here's some explanation:

The comic book industry has gone through some hard times. Through those hard times, the only "shops" that were able to weather the storm of the late 90s to mid 2000s were the HUGE retail shops. The publishers and distributor never want to weather an industry storm like that again, so they have set up a system which caters to the big/multiple-store retailers (knowing that they have the buying power to stick around) and they pass any risk to the indie shops.

Death Ray Comics is an indie shop. We are the Richard Linklater of comic book shops (but BEFORE he made Slacker).

All of the shop's money is tied up in inventory. Inventory that Diamond Comics makes us pay for before it is delivered by a very angry UPS man. Additionally, Diamond as the sole distributor of comic books (in the world) does absolutely zero stewardship for new retailers. There is no help in building initial inventory; be it in suggestions of what to order or discount in initial orders placed. In other words I signed up to play pinata, walked into a dark gymnasium, blind-folded and broom in hand, and had I had to start swinging (also, gymnasium was also full of rabid raccoons). The shop is just one month away from proving itself in Diamond's new-shop-probationary-haze, after which we will be able to make orders on credit. 

I understand how money works, and I don't see "credit" as free money, but the credit will help in that (especially for products ordered by customers and pull-list items) when I order something that I know will sell, the item will pay for itself as soon as it gets to the shop.

I've dumped all of my savings and credit into the shop. I love it so much. I've met some of the most amazing people in my life, and for the first time in the past 10 years, I feel like I have a home.

I've done this all while working a full-time job and attempting to finish graduate school. I've had to drop out of school and my last two paychecks from my full-time job paid the shop's rent. As I'm now behind in my own mortgage payment, I'm not sure what else to do.
When I first opened the shop I had an other supplemental source of income to assist in the rent. That is now gone; and sadly, its absence has affected my business model more so than I ever anticipated.

I will do all in my power to get the online store up and going this week. And any sales which you make there will in deed, greatly help! Additionally, just call the shop and order something. We can run your credit card and ship it to you. And you can donate some money via PayPal.

Writing this has been a horrible experience. Pushing back tears and swallowing the ever growing lump in my throat, I've managed to reach what I only hope to be the end. Thank you for reading. 

If you can help, it would really mean the world to me. As to not have to pay sales tax on any of the donations, I can't promise or state that I will give you anything for donating. That doesn't mean I can't send you my own thank you, but I can't say that we will exchange money for goods or services. So I will preemptively say thank you. And those who help, will be forever remembered as part of the Death Ray Comics / apartofhim family, for as long as the hunger of Galactus consumes planets. 

Thank you all so much. 
With the most humble and deepest regards,
Sherman and Trent

<!---update 10/20/2013, 2:28 AM---!>
I have since taken down the links to PayPal. The response I received was WELL beyond what I ever could have expected or imagined. Thank you all so much for your kind words, support, and love.


  1. I'll sign your pitty on the runny kine!

  2. Your donate buttons are all broken. :( Two of them just go to Paypal (not to a donate interface for you), one is a link back to this page.

    1. Thanks for being willing to help out. I would feel horrible to keep accepting funds when I've had so much help.

  3. Yup! Fix the donate button and I will send some love your way! <3

    1. Oh wow! I do love any love sent my way, but we are back on our feet, so they only love I need is to come into the shop and shoot the shit with me about comics. Thank you!