This is from a March 28, 1984 letter to my brother Don:
"The Turtles are finished. We did manage to stay on schedule… in fact, we surpassed our schedule, and had all the artwork done by March 19. This Monday I brought all the stuff to the printer, and we are currently waiting for it to be printed. Hopefully, that will be accomplished within a few weeks. I wrote up and sent out a press release to all the major comics fanzines, hoping tat we might get some free publicity (our advertising budget is a very frayed shoestring). Wonder of wonders! -- This week in the Comics Buyer's Guide, a weekly magazine/newspaper devoted to comics and distributed nationally, our press release was reprinted almost word for word, along with a piece of art that we had sent along with it. The space it took up would have cost us about forty-five dollars. I'll send along a reduced Xerox of the page so you can check it out.
Yesterday I got a call from a guy out near Concord, NH, who saw the notice in the Guide and wanted to know what our plans for distribution are. He does some distributing of comics to stores in his area, and may want to deal some of our turtle books. I didn't give him a definite yes or no, as we are going to wait 'til after the convention before we start dealing with dealers. Also, he said that he would probably want to pay 40% of cover for the book -- supposedly that is the same amount that he pays another major distributor for comics. However, that would mean we'd only make 25 cents per book… not exactly what we would like to make. We'll wait and see; if the book really sells well through mail orders, we''ll sell it that way. But if it is really slow-moving, we'll probably bite the bullet and try to unload them on distributors.
Probably the biggest news up here is that Jeannine has found a teaching job for next year, after filling out many applications. Amazingly enough (and to her relief), she was offered the position after her first interview!….. The school is in Falls Village, Connecticut; she'll be teaching high school English there. So, come September, we will no longer be residents of New Hampshire. Kevin will probably move with us, so that he and I can continue Mirage Studios. Far out, huh?"
[As mentioned before, we DID "bite the bullet" and sell to distributors at wholesale prices. Just goes to show how little we knew about the way this business was typically done when we started out in it.
At this late date, I can't remember who the "guy out near Concord, NH" was, and if we ever ended up doing business with him.
In hindsight (which, as we all know, is 20/20), it's ironic that the "biggest news" when I wrote this letter was Jeannine finding a teaching job -- and NOT the first issue of the TMNT being done and about to be printed, something that would change all our lives radically. But that's life -- at that time, Jeannine's new job WAS way more important than our goofy little comic book. -- PL]