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Tony's Online Tips
Reviews and commentary by Tony Isabella
"America's Most Beloved Comic-Book Writer & Columnist"

Current TOT >> TOT Archives | About Tony | Books by Tony | Message Board

for Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Earlier this month I wrote a "State of the Tony" column, and I figured I'd finish off the month with some stuff I didn't cover then and some updates on things I did cover.

One of the questions I am frequently asked is: "How do I get my comics/books/DVDs/whatever reviewed in 'Tony's Tips' and 'Tony's Online Tips'? While I can never guarantee a review, the best tip I can give you is...send me what you want me to review. That will increase your chance of getting a review here.

I fully understand that it costs money to send review items to me. I appreciate those publishers who send me virtually everything they produce and I appreciate those who send me what they can. In this economy, money is tight all over.

I can't review comic books and books from PDFs or from online presentations. It's not a failure of my computer equipment; it's a failure of my mental equipment. For me, it's a frustrating way to read material and an even more frustrating way to review that material. I'm set like concrete in my ways, which include keeping review items at my side so that I can check stuff in them while I write my reviews. I've tried to do the PDFs and such, but my brain just doesn't work that way. However, I can offer some tips on how to increase the chances of my reviewing what you send me.

Drop me an e-mail and let me know what you're publishing at the moment. I have no problem going over the list and letting you know which items I'm most likely to read and review. This seems to work out fine for a number of publishers.

Think about what you send me. I like clear storytelling. If you have a good story or something interesting to say, that would be sufficient to get my attention. If you prefer to hide the good stuff in artsy-fartsy storytelling that obscures your story or your message, I'm probably not the reviewer for you.

I like all kinds of comics. Send me a well-done comic book or graphic novel that isn't just another take on something I've seen dozens of times before. By reading my columns, you can get a good idea of what has earned top marks from me in the past.

Unless you have a mind-shatteringly original take on vampires and zombies or have the greatest vampire or zombie comic book ever, don't bother. I'm bored with those sub-genres.

One last tip in this area. I can and have reviewed comics and stuff from advance copies, but I still need to read the whole comic book or whatever to review it fairly. Sending me the first eight pages of your comic book doesn't help me or you.

You can e-mail me at:

You can send review items to me at:

Tony Isabella
840 Damon Drive
Medina, OH 44256

I look forward to being dazzled by you.


Having just proclaimed sending me stuff offers the best chance of getting me to write about said stuff, I must shamefacedly admit I won't be able to provide review copies of my 1000 COMIC BOOKS YOU MUST READ. The number of author copies I'll be receiving won't last beyond my immediate family and the people who helped me out on the book.

I don't know how many review copies the publisher is planning to distribute, but, to request one, contact Greg Hatfield at F+W Media. His e-mail address is:

Let him know who you are, what your credentials are, and where your review of the book might appear.

If you would like to interview me about the book, contact me directly at:

I'll do my best to accommodate everyone who wants to interview me about the book. Other aspects of my career have been covered in excruciating details, so interviews focusing on the book will get priority over interviews that don't. Whenever possible, I prefer to answer questions via e-mail. That way I can avoid the stumble-mouth that inflicts me whenever I try to answer questions over the phone. Trust me on this; it isn't pretty.

One last book note:

Despite what was in the 1000 Comic Books You Must Read solicitation in last month's Previews, this is not a trade paperback. It's a hardcover that will look wonderful in your bookcase, on your coffee table, or under your Christmas tree. It's the greatest book on comic books I ever wrote.


Since I last made a "Tip The Tipster" request, I have received three donations. All were greatly appreciated, especially in these rough economic times. Combined, these donations will pay a month's electric bill here at Casa Isabella.

No new work has come my way, so I'll repeat the other request I made at the time:

The better way you can help, especially if you're an editor or publisher, is to hire me. If you're not an editor or publisher, feel free to let editors and publishers you know that you'd love to buy and read Tony Isabella material in their publications.

My thanks to my friends and readers for their support now and in the future. You're the best.


Mid-Ohio-Con takes place this weekend and, as mentioned in Monday's TOT, I'll be a guest at my favorite comics convention in the known universe. If you're attending the show, please stop by my table and say hello. If you're on the fence about attending the show, head over to...

...and discover all the many reasons you should get off that darn fence and join the fun!

Thanks for spending a part of your day with me. I'll be back tomorrow with more stuff.

Tony Isabella

<< 09/29/2009 | 09/30/2009 | 10/01/2009 >>

Discuss this column with me at my Message Board. Also, read Heroes and Villains: Real and Imagined and view my Amazon Wish List.

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Zero Tonys
ZERO: Burn your money before buying any comic receiving this rating. It doesn't *necessarily* mean there's absolutely nothing of value here - though it *could* - but whatever value it might possess shrinks into insignificance before its overall awfulness.

ONE: Buy something else. Maybe I found something which wasn't completely dreadful in the item, but not enough for me to recommend it when there are better comics available. I only want what's best for you, my children.

TWO: Basic judgment call. I found some value, but not enough to recommend it. My review should give you enough info to decide if you want to take a chance on it. Are you feeling lucky today, punk? Well, are you?

THREE: This denotes something I find perfectly respectable. There are better books out there, but I wouldn't regret buying this item. Based on my review, you should be able to determine if it's of interest to you. Let the Force guide you.

FOUR: I recommend anything earning this rating. Unless you don't like the genre, subject matter, or past work of the creators, I believe you'll enjoy this item. Isn't it uncanny how I can look right into your soul that way?

FIVE: Anything getting this rating is among the best comicdom has to offer. You should buy/read this, even if the genre/subject matter doesn't appeal to you. It's for your own good. Me, I live for comics and books this good...but not in a pathetic "Comic-Book Guy" sort of way.

Please send material you would like me to review to:

Tony's Online Tips
840 Damon Drive
Medina, OH 44256

Order my book,
1000 Comic Books You Must Read.1000 Comic Books You Must Read

It's your turn to "Tip the Tipster" and Webmaster who bring you these columns! Just click the "Tip the Tipster" button. Thanks for your support!
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