Geek collectable company owner Shaun Paulet decided to take a slightly different approach to the collectable market than most vendors. Instead of sourcing all the usual lines of stuff from the producers for the toy and collectable business, Shaun levered his passion for affordable collectibles to create, in conjunction with a collection of top Australian artists, a line of limited edition collectable prints available online or nationwide at Australian conventions for his company COMICS2MOVIES.
But after finding success within the artistic world of prints, Shaun decided to bring his own creativity and passion for comic books to the table, and thus was born XCT, a comic book series about clones of mythical monsters and ancient warriors like Spartacus fighting to the death for an audience of billions in the Xtreme Champion Tournament. XCT was successfully launched in Australia, New Zealand and the US in 2014.
Shaun and I have a great chat about high school sporting achievements, being the most funded Australian comic book crowdfunding project on Kickstarter, letting other people play with your stories, competing with the iconic American comic books for shelf space in Australian stores and ensuring your daughter shares your love of comics!
Opening a friendly local game store in an out-of-the-way, tropical tourist town might seem downright crazy, but Cairns boy Mick Archer has not only done it, he’s made The Wicked Goblin a success. He focuses his store on the people who play tabletop games as much as, if not more so than, the products themselves.
The exterior of The Wicked Goblin.
In my latest location recording, Mick and I chat about his background in both gaming and hospitality, how Mick built his war chest for The Wicked Goblin and the importance of not just having friends and family in your corner but also having a true partnership in your business.
Thank you again, Adam at Sprue Grey, for your questions! I hope my chat with Mick helps you open your own Friendly Local Store soon!
Please stick around after the interview for an update on my own paid to play progress!
I’ve listened to a fair few life-change and small business podcasts in the last year or so, and a lot of them talk about Financial Freedom as an aim and an achievement. It’s one thing to hear podcasters in the States talk about it, though, and another thing to meet an example of it.
Michelle Ward has been pursuing alternative income streams for almost a decade and has amassed such a broad portfolio of affiliate sales sites that she has the freedom to explore where her interests take her, whether full-time employeehood or even freelancing. After getting to know her at work, I just had to talk with Michelle about how she became an Internet entrepreneur!
It’s one thing to start a business in order to sell a product, yet another to believe in the product and its benefits. But Brad Russell, the co-owner and operator of Earth Toys with his wife Bree, lives and breathes a whole philosophy of play that seems absent from most places that sell toys.
In my fifth location interview, I visited Earth Toys, a shop in the middle of Cairns, to talk with Brad about how he and Bree set their business up and how it’s going, but came away not just with that but also a hefty slice of Brad himself.
Brad is a great guy to talk with: Always relaxed, always intelligent and always very insightful. Relax and let this one sink in!
And once you’ve finished this episode, drop in and see Brad when you’re next in the area. You’ll probably leave with something you hadn’t thought about buying before, but with a view on playing – and living – that you’d never considered before.
I bring you two interviews for the price of one download; a great pair of interviews with Malcolm Semmens and Amy Milligan, owner-operators of KerSplatt! Comics and Collectables, Cairns’ only dedicated comic book store and fast becoming a second home for the geek population of Cairns!
Amy Milligan and Mal Semmens.
I ask Mal and Amy just how much work they’ve done to turn a random idea into an operating business, how they balance selling their hobby and indulging in it – and in what new ways opening and managing a shop can actually be fun!