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From Arkansas to the Dutch West Indies 2007

All images © Copyright 2008 - 2012 by Michael Tierney


Bonus Material!

by Michael Tierney


In 1999 and 2000, I tried to get some use out of the duo-shade material I had left over after creating the unpublished version of Wild Stars Volume 3 #1, and drew up a few cartoons:

In retrospect, the politcal cartoon about the Presidential sex scandal with an intern by the former Governor of Arkansas is now in poor taste, after the events of 9-1-1. But this cartoon has a Wild Stars connection. Check the background of the Artomique invasion of the First Nations in Volume 3 #1, and you'll see somthing familiar. And, speaking of 9-1-1, interior artist Dave Simons was an eye-witness to this tragic event. In Wild Stars Volume 3 #3, there is a full page dedicated to Dave's memoir of living through this event that traumatized, and later galvanized the nation!

StateBirdOfArkansas The scuba diving joke is one I've told customers for years. Being a certified Master Diver, I've had shark encounters on over half my dives. Of course, it should also be pointed out that I tend to dive during feeding frenzies and in places with names like Shark Alley, Shark Grotto, Shark Junction, and... well, you get the point. The scrabble cartoon was one I'd carried in pencil for years. But, once I drew it up and started submitting it, the next thing you know, I see the gag used in the trailer for a movie that I can't remember the name of. It must have bombed.

To the right is a design I did for a shirt patch. And, no... this isn't the actual State Bird of Arkansas. But it should be. The Air Force's fleet of C-130 Transport planes are based at the Little Rock Air Force base, and can be seen constantly flying training missions around the capital city. My last house was located close to one of their air strips, and they'd fly over all the time. It made for a free air show. The only problem was that whenever I was outside swimming in the pool and the then-President would visit town, suddenly I'd have Air Force One's jet engines screaming a hundred feet over my head. Water magnifies noise.
Click here for more Cartoons!

Prototype Graphic Novels

When I opened my first comic book specialty store in 1982, I immediately looked for retail niches that had been overlooked, where consumer demand was not being filled. Pictured below is a set of Prototype Graphic Novels, containing mini-series from 1982 through 1985, that I repackaged for resale in my store.
Pictured above; Crisis on Infinite Earths, Green Arrow Green Lantern, Warlock, Ronin, New Gods, The Life of Captain Marvel, Deadman, and the Shadow of the Batman. Except for the original DC Crisis and Frank Miller's Ronin, all these collections were made up of early Eighties quality reprint mini-series.

Careful not to do anything that would approach copyright infringement, I consulted an attorney before making these. His advice; since I regularly repackage comics by placing them in plastic bags, then this repackaging would not be infringement -- as long as I didn't advertise them for sale outside my store. After all, this was not exactly a new concept, since over the years fans and publishers themselves had often bound up favorite runs of comic books.

Just to be on the safe side, in the mid-Eighties I took the set pictured above with me to a publisher's conference with retailers, hosted by Capitol City Distribution, in Madison, Wisconsin. The response by representatives of both Marvel and DC was the same as what my attorney had said. Not a problem.

I then tried to convince them that there was a strong demand for graphic novels, but didn't get a positive response. Publishers were just starting to experiment with the reprinting of classic comics material, and the concept that there might be demand for bound reprints was something they weren't ready to consider. Not yet.

Then, a few years later DC did a limited edition hardcover of Frank Miller's the Dark Knight Returns, followed by a trade paperback edition. That success was repeated with the release of Alan Moore's Watchmen trade paperback. Both The Dark Knight Returns and the Watchmen remain in print today, and graphic novels have become the fastest growing area of comic book sales. There is no longer a need to repackage for the local market.

These long-ago sold out prototype graphic novels, and the limited edition Wild Stars hardcovers pictured on this site, were all bound by J & B Quality Book Bindery in Little Rock, Arkansas.

Professional Writings

In addition to creative work, I've also written articles and reports on the state of the comic book industry, both on the web and in print.

Here is a partial list of my industry writings in print:


You'll find material by me in every issue of the CBG, the industry's longest running periodical about comics, after they switched to a monthly magazine format with issue #1595 in August of 2005 through the final issue of #1699 in March 2013.

Trendwatcher Reports (reporting on what's hot and what's not, and the industry in general):

Every issue from #1595 (August 2004) through #1699 (March 2013).


Retro-Reviews of every Tarzan comic from #1, Dell Comics, January 1948, through the Gold Key, DC, and Marvel runs that concluded in 1979, ran in CBG issues #1596 through #1615. Approximately 300 reviews in all. They are also available for purchase on CD, directly from The Comics Buyer's Guide at

Retro-Reviews of the complete Sixties series of Gold Key Comics' Total War/M.A.R.S. Patrol ran in issue #1646.

Reviews of current comics are in CBG issues #1606 through #1617, #1619 through #1624, #1626 through #1629, #1632 through #1635, #1637, #1639, #1640, #1644, #1645, #1647 through #1649, #1651, #1652, #1656, #1661 through #1667, #1670, #1671, #1672. #1675 through #1680, #1682, #1686, #1690, #1691 and #1699.

Pick of the Month reviews were in #1608, #1611, #1618, #1627, #1629, #1634, #1639, #1640, #1651, #1956, #1663, #1664 #1665, #1670, #1671, #1675, #1677 through #1680, #1686, #1690 (twice), and #1699.

A CBG interview ran in issue #1604, May 2005. My comments about not being willing to break local zoning laws against selling pornography in close proximity to schools and churches, and not having a problem with those laws, caused one reader to write his disagreement in issue #1607. The editor's rebuttal left no need for a response. Another interview ran in #1664 (April 2010) when both Collector's Edition and The Comic Book Store were Destination Comics! feature locations. Another Destination Comics! feature in #1672 posed the dual questions of "Why Comics?" and "Do You Want to be a Comics Retailer?" You'll find other comments, usually taken from the CBGXtra website, in the Letter's Page section of issues #1614, #1615, #1619, #1620, #1623, #1625, #1627, #1628, #1631, #1633, #1638, #1639, #1644, #1649, #1650, #1654, #1657, #1660, #1663, #1666 (quoted in Comic Values article), #1678 (CBG's 40th Anniversary tribute), and #1685 (Holiday gift suggestions). #1690 had another feature about my retailing experiences (shown right).Comics Buyer's Guide issue #1690

Appearances in the weekly newspaper format of the Comics Buyer's Guide: #1368, February 4, 2000 (pointing out funny errors on a Silver Age cover), #1543, June 13, 2003 (letter), July 11, 2003 (letter), #1547, July 11, 2003 (letter), #1573, January 8, 2004 (article about artist Armando Gil), #1592, May 21, 2004 (article about a local Classics Illustrated museum show).

Overstreet Price Guide 40 - Conan variant cvr


I've been a Price Guide Advisor for the original comics pricing history guide since the 29th Edition in 1999. With the 31st Edition, Overstreet added advisor's annual market reports. You can read mine in every volume from the 31st through the current 46th, 2016 Edition.

Overstreet Comic Book Price Guides are available with multiple covers, each in both softcover and hardcover for the direct market. The mass market editions have different covers. Beginning with the 31st Edition was an oversized Big, Big version, which is spiral bound and features yet another cover. The Big, Big format was dropped after the 38th edition, only to return after a three year hiatus with the 42nd, 2012 edition, and continues to this day. The 40th edition was the first with a Hero Initiative benefit variant (shown with a cover recreation of Conan the Barbarian #1 ).


In Issue #65, August 1997, they ran my experience rating test for retailers (9 funny things every retailer has heard on the phone), #78, (letter), #85 (letter), #91 (listing me as a finalist for the 1999 Will Eisner's Spirit of Comics Retailer of the Year Award), #93 (letter), #95 (article), #101 (article about the 2000 Comic Book Legal Defense Fund Cruise), #103 (letter), #107 (letter), #124 (article), #136 (Maggie Thompson's article about one of my store advertising campaigns), #138 (market report), #139 (guest commentary), #158 (article), #189 (article), final issue #191, February 2008 (multiple market reports).

Photo on the right from the 2000 Comic Book Legal Defense Fund Cruise on Carnival Cruise Lines. Michael Tierney on the left, Will Eisner on the right.


Market Reports in #84, August 2001, through #87, #89 through #91, #94, #97, #102, #105, #106, #117, #118, #119, and #121, May 2005. Ceasing publication in 2005, this series featured three variant covers per issue.


Interviewed in the 2003 2nd Quarter Edition: RETAILERS GUIDE TO MANGA.

Quoted in the 2005 4th Quarter Edition: RETAILERS GUIDE TO GRAPHIC NOVELS

Fall 2016, issue #90: Quoted in both the article about CREATOR SIGNINGS and the article BUBBLING UP! COMICS AND CREATORS ON THE WAY UP.


An advisor for the only two issues in 1997 and 1998. Market Report in #2.


Market reports from issue #2, July 1995, through the final issue #29, June 1997. All issues had two variant covers.


Market Reports from #4, August 1993, through the final issue #20, December 1994.


Published by the University of Arkansas at Little Rock. Technical advisor for issues #22 (1982) through #24 (1984).

Bimini Road, 1999

Photography by Michael Tierney

Obviously, all the photography in my articles and on this website is my own, except when I handed my camera to someone else to take my picture.

Since scuba diving is what reawakened my childhood interest in photography, it's appropriate that my first professional credit comes from when I was free diving on the legendary Bimini Road (Dive Log 8) back in 1999.

Meg Blackburn Losey, Ph.D., ran the shot to the left in her 2010 book, The Secret History of Consciousness -- Ancient Keys to Our Future Survival, with her chapter on ancient Atlanteans.

Boardgames designed by Michael Tierney

Under contract with Troll Lords Games is TARZAN TRIUMPHANT: I AM THE APEMAN. Licensed with Edgar Rice Burroughs Inc. There is no production date set for this game. Tarzan Boardgame Link


Also ready for production, and looking for a manufacturer is the Wild Stars: Celestial Clockwork board game! That's only one part of the base that you see to the right. Like the Tarzan game, the complete system offers unique movement based on events from the actual Wild Stars comics.

Links to other related sites:

Here's my November 2011 autobiographical article about the influence of Edgar Rice Burroughs on my career, run as an introduction for my page scans of the John Carter of Mars pages from the Golden Age Funnies comics on the ERBzine website.

Here's a link to my podcast interview about the Wild Stars, run on the Book Cave. Listening to it, it's hard to believe that I had no caffeine that day. I get excited whenever talking about the Wild Stars.

If you liked the artwork that you've seen here (and you probably wouldn't be reading this if you didn't), then here's a link to Wild Stars cover artist Frank Brunner's Website.

Two things will draw a news camera crew faster than almost anything else -- girls in spandex and a new law to censor their images. This stated intent of a Arkansas Display Act rewrite by the Arkansas State Legislature was to allow each neighborhood community to decide what their definition of obscenity was and then let you know -- retroactively -- whenever you had broken the law. Here is a link to my open letter to the Arkansas House of Representatives, in protest of the censorship law.The first news of legislators admitting that they "might have made a mistake" was broadcast by local TV from the floor of Collector's Edition. The Attorney General's Office determined the law to be unconstitutional and refused to enforce it. Challenged, the rewrite of the law eventually dropped off the books. The high negatively score in the poll about comics occurred because both Marvel and DC had increased the maturity of their content without providing age guidelines. They went from all ages to mature content for older readers with no warning. Right at the exact same time that I was embroiled in this battle against censorship. The videos chronicling this battle as it was waged in the news are recycled from VHS tape recordings.

Follow this link (or click the the site map link located on the lefthand column of every page of to discover film, news clips, and classic advertisements tracing the history of Collector's Edition, The Comic Book Store, and the comics industry in general over the last 4 decades!

I've started a new section on the History of Comics. For the initial overview of how comics are made, start here.

Tarzan Large Feature #5 Tarzan Single Series #20 Walt Disney's Comics & Stories #1 Uncle Scrooge #1

I've added a section to dispell a common misconception about the comic book industry.

Comic Book Store owners always get a bad rap, as the public perception is that we're all like the rude, Simpson's Comic Book Store Guy, lazing around, and surrounded by nothing but food and big stacks of Super-Hero comics.

Like a Super-Hero, my other hobbies involve a mask and breathing apparatus, specialized training that includes rescue, dangerous activities and encounters with deadly animals, plus travel around the world to exotic locations, including a trip down the road to a lost civilization.

These are the incredible, but true adventures of a masked Comic Book Store Guy:

Check out the Dive Log.

Swimming in liquid topaz

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All images and text are © 1984-2016 by Michael Tierney.
Wild Stars is a Registered Trademark of Michael Tierney
Little Rocket Publications TM is a Trademark of Tierney Incorporated