Graham opened his shop up an hour earlier to deal with the expected rush of comic fans arriving, and by the time I had arrived the shop was bustling with customers. They had all the official comics on the Free Comic Book day list on offer, as well as their own Grinning Demon selection. The offer included two free comics and all others at 50 pence each. On top of that they had a section with a selection of more recent Dr Who, DC and Marvel comics to buy at a drastically reduced price. Graham also showed me a page drawn by resident artists during Demoncon based on an 8 panel Kurtis Weibe script written on the day which they are giving away today.
Graham had also arranged some discounts on snacks (including some pretty stunning knickerbocker glories) in the local cafés and shops near the grinning demon, on presentation of one of the free comics. It's a nice idea and is a great way of showing how special the community of a brick and mortar comic seller really is. Also on site were artists, Vic 'Iddstar' Hill, Gison Grey and Andy W. Clift showing off their wares and chatting to the customers as they browsed.
For the Grinning Demon, free comic book day may not be about profit, but it is certainly about awareness of their product in the local area and for spreading the word about comics to friends and family. Graham is very keen to emphasise that recommendation is the most important point of visiting your local comic store, and he exercises a generous policy of returning comics if the customers didn't like what they read. He was also keen to point out that this very rarely happens.
If you haven't been to your local store in a while, get down and take a look now. Let me know what you found in the comments below.
You can find out more about the Grinning Demon on their facebook page.