Lone Star Comics
Collected is proud to announce that we just added two new stores to our collection! Many of you saw the press release that went out yesterday about Collected buying the Hurst and Plano locations of Lone Star Comics and we have been flooded with questions.
First off we would like thank the awesome customers and friends that have helped launch Collected and have made us successful enough to expand. Here are answers to some of the questions we have received…
• The transition takes place September 1, 2013.
• Brent is not leaving Ape Comics. Brent is an integral part of both companies and there are too many synergies and opportunities available between the companies for us not to be excited about working together.
• We are retaining the existing staff in all locations. We are very happy with the jobs that Mike, Rick, and their teams have done in service to Lone Star and are excited to help them grow and exceed all your expectations!
• Brent and Ron will both be visible, accessible and working in the stores. The main reason we started this business was because we love interacting with YOU! We will not give that up.
• All current services and benefits (such as sub service) that are available at each location currently are staying in place. We plan to augment and bring new services and benefits to make your experience in all of our stores even more exciting.
• There are no immediate plans to move existing stores.
• All operating hours will remain consistent with current hours. There may be a few tweaks here and there, but nothing major.
• One of the great benefits of having multiple stores is that we are now able to source and bring in new product lines. These will be in addition to all of the current great products carried in each store. And, yes… we will be adding back issues to each location!
• We are in the process of exploring programs that will take the place of the Hero Point system.
• Collected has always been very active in the local and regional convention circuit and we will continue this as well as being active in all of the local geek related communities from gaming to cosplay, to movie releases and comic book clubs.
• We will be distributing applications to all stores on September 1. As we are keeping all staff at each location there are no current openings, but we do plan on expanding and there will be future opportunities for qualified individuals.
• Collected is extremely proud of the fill rate success we have on special orders in our current TCU location. We order from multiple sources, are direct with many manufacturers and have been able to fill over 98% of in print items for our customers. We plan on keeping this success rate and expanding to all locations.
• Collected TCU currently appraises and purchases collectibles in store. We will be expanding this to all locations on an appointment basis. So if you have comics, games, toys, or other collectibles that you are looking to sell or trade, we will be happy to look at them in store.
• We will be maintaining all of the current events that are happening in the stores. Fear not that your favorite game of comic event will be going away. We will also be adding many new events that will give everyone the chance to experience the stores in a whole new way!
• THERE WILL BE CREATOR APPEARANCES AND SIGNINGS! For those who know Brent and Ron, you know in our past incarnations owning stores we have hosted such great creators as Neil Gaiman, Jim Lee, Marc Silvestri, Jeff Smith, Peter David, Richard and Wendy Pini, J Scott Campbell, Drew Hayes, and many more. We even had Richard Garfield stop by and teach us how to play this little game called Magic the Gathering when the Alpha set first came out. This is who we are and another aspect of this business that we love. If you are a creator (that means writer, artist, game designer, etc) and would like to have an appearance in our store,, please contact us. If you are a fan, let us know who you would like to meet and have us bring into the stores!
• We have always been and will always be HUGE supporters for local talent and local companies. Stop by and make sure we know about your favorites so we can help support them!
Lone Star Comics has served as the North Texas hub of comic book fandom for more than 36 years. When the first store opened in 1977 in Arlington, Buddy Saunders introduced comics, role-playing games, and related hobbies, toys, and collectibles to many of his customers for the first time. Over the years, Saunders’ passion grew into a chain of stores and the largest comic retail site
on the internet, www.mycomicshop.com. This September, Saunders and his wife Judy are turning over the reins to three of their stores to a new generation of comic fans and entrepreneurs. “The time is right for us to focus our attention on our online business, which grew out the mail order business I began in 1961, a time when there were virtually no comic book stores and no internet. To that end, Judy and I found two talented businessmen who want to carry the stores forward in a way that we’ll continue to be proud of.”
One of the stores will be owned by longtime Lone Star Comics Regional Manager, Aaron Settle. “Having managed the stores in one capacity or another for 17 years, Aaron was the perfect choice to take over the Mesquite store,” said Judy Saunders, “and I know that he’ll bring his own vision for a family-friendly comic and game store to life.”
The Hurst and Plano locations will be owned by Brent Erwin, a longtime comics fan, publisher, and friend of Buddy and Judy. “Brent’s vision of what a comic book store should be is very similar to ours. I have no doubt that the store customers in Hurst and Plano will be pleased with the continuation of excellent selection and service in these stores.” The two stores will operate under the name “Collected: Hurst & Collected: Plano” to coincide with the already operating “Collected: TCU” at 3467 Blue Bonnet Circle in Fort Worth Tx.
“It will be bittersweet to hand over the keys,” said Buddy Saunders, “but Judy and I want to continue working with our son, Conan, to develop new features for our growing internet business. This change will also give us more time to travel and spend time with our family.”
“Having grown up as a long time customer of Lone Star Comics and having worked in the comics industry for the last 23 years, it fills me with a great sense of pride to know we will be carrying on a part of the Lone Star Comics legacy which Buddy and Judy have built over the years” said Brent E. Erwin. “We plan to offer the same excellent customer service, family friendly atmosphere, and well stocked and expertly merchandised stores which Buddy and Judy have cultivated over the years and Lone Star’s customers have come to expect” Erwin said.
Collected’s mission to grow the pop culture industry by increasing awareness about comics, games and pop culture takes a giant step towards its goal with the addition of Lone Star Comics’ Hurst and Plano locations. Collected hopes fans will discover the exciting world of comics, games, pop culture and all things Geek when they visit each location. To learn more about the Collected family of retail stores please visit us at www.Staycollected.com.