Earlier in the week i went to talk to the people at magma books about how they select their stock and what sells etc. More market research than pushing my product. They were really nice and had a look at oil slick, and were actually really positive (i think) about it. They said that they normally take about 50 copies of something and that they take 45% of the self price. Things that would improve oil slick's chances of being stocked/selling well were.
-Some kind of packaging to protect the product from getting bashed around too much. maybe a cardboard band or a decorated envelope, thins also make it seem abit more of a high end product rather than just a newspaper, alternatively, a thicker cover.
-some colour apparently drastically improves a product's chance of selling, the lady said she liked it fine without and that even some coloured paper would help. pointed at le gun as an example of this.
-smaller format = less shelf space = easier to stock
We also talked about pricing and profitablility, and how considering the amount of units concerned, profit wasn't really worth worrying about. Unless I sold it for a tenner I wouldn't make enough money to support a modest chewing gum habit. Also if compared to other magazines, books etc. value for money dictates that it cannot cost more than about £4 max.
So better to aim for covering the costs and seeing in as an exercise in self promotion. at least until i can produce a higher gloss product. I've left them with a sample copy for the boss to have a look at and filled out a "stock proposition form" or some such. I think it's unlikely to be taken on, but i believe them when they said the artwork was good enough to be stocked, so the next step is to try and make a more commercially feasable product, and to talk to more shops.