After fourteen years and over 300 issues Claypool Comics will cease print publication of all titles and take its Deadbeats series to the Web as an online publication. Claypool will continue to publish through the first quarter of next year with Elvira, Mistress of the Dark #166 due out in February along with Soulsearchers and Company #82. Before the series heads to the Web, the final print issue, Deadbeats #82 will ship to retailers in March. Claypool's trade paperback collections (and back issues) will remain available as long as supplies last.
Last November Diamond Comic Distributors informed Claypool that the publisher's titles were not meeting Diamond's guidelines for profitable distribution. In spite of a joint Claypool/Diamond marketing effort, circulations did not rise fast enough to make the necessary threshold. While sales of periodical comics are up substantially in 2006, the vast majority of those sales are going to Marvel and DC (thanks in part to a number of well-managed 'events' such as Marvel's current Civil War), which puts pressure on independent publishers such as Claypool who have to compete with the big guys for the comic consumer's dollar.