1.09.2006

Welcome To The New Year!

I thought it was time that I give you the guided tour, the “lay of the land” here at 13 Minutes. Now that the new banners have gone up and we’ve completed our subtle redesign of the site, I feel that we’re finding our groove and wanted to comment on a few things. There’s the name, 13 Minutes, what exactly does that mean? I don’t have a straight answer to that question; it can refer to a few things in my mind.

One of my former bosses used to use a saying frequently regarding our business; he talked about displaying the appropriate “sense of urgency.” I always liked that. And to me, 13 Minutes just sounds exigent. The industry is in need of immediate assistance, perhaps in the next 13 Minutes. Doesn’t it sound finite and fill you with panic? Don’t we all have something to do in the next 13 Minutes? What could happen in that amount of time?

It could also mean that no entry here should take you longer to read than 13 Minutes. Warhol talked about “15 minutes of fame,” maybe here in the hyper-accelerated Internet world, it could be that 13 is more apropos.

But, honestly, it just sounded cool. I remember Dan, Owner of Wacky Hijinx Comics, telling me about his store name and why he chose it. It was a little subversive, it sounded hip, like something you wanted to be a part of. It sounds fun, he said with a sly grin. It doesn’t have to have some deep meaning, either intuitive or deliberate. That, I learned from Dan.

The links to the retailers are the best stores I’ve found. Not the ones I’ve heard about, there are many more that have solid reputations, these are the ones I’ve personally known. I’ve shopped at them regularly, known the Owners, and have witnessed the power of positive retailing. We hope to add more.

The links to the other reviewers may seem counter-intuitive. Aren’t they competition? I don’t view it that way. I see them as brothers, fellow soldiers in the battle of the arts, carrying forth the message. “You can’t stop the signal,” as Joss Whedon told us recently in Serenity. These are individuals spreading the word about quality comics, either via reviews or industry news, in a thoughtful and entertaining way.

As for entries, hopefully it feels pretty straightforward by now. Weekly reviews of new comics. In alignment with their serialized format, they’ll be brief and offer a sound byte that lets you know whether they’re worth your hard earned money. Graphic Novel of The Month will be just what it says. It doesn’t necessarily have to come out that month, but we do try. These are the real stand out gems, shining examples of the capability of the medium. We believe in comic books. Retailer Doin’ It Right we hope to add more of and will add them as necessary. Unfortunately they’re not as prevalent as they need to be. The Best of The Year entries will also continue. That’s what we commit to and any additional GN reviews or miscellaneous pop culture tidbits, interviews, and articles we consider bonus material.

Lastly, our “Statement of Intent,” which has been added on the right. This lets you the reader know our mission, but also serves as a reminder of the guiding principles for us to follow as we add contributors.

Enjoy!

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