Sunday, June 18, 2017

My Dilemma

I have been collecting comic books for over 30 years now. I have a sizable collection that I cherish, but I just don't feel the same about getting new books as I have in years past.

I don't typically read individual issues of a comic any more, preferring to instead read a trade paperback and get a better read. Collecting individual issues has become more of a rote than a passion. Years ago, I would be thrilled to be adding issues to my collection. Now, I find the task laborious and tedious.

When I go to comic cons, I still enjoy being able to go to writers and artists to get my books signed. Do I really need to continue collecting the latest issues of titles that I'm interested in, but will never take time to actually read? There are only a handful of titles that I really would like to keep current on, for whatever reason that I can't explain. Thinking of them specifically, it may be a sense of nostalgia because they take me back to my childhood. Series like G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero and Star Wars still have my interest and call to me, whereas my passion for collecting Lady Death has seriously diminished.

I can remember when my love of Lady Death began to wain. When LD started taking-off under Avatar Press/Boundless Comics, for every regular issue, there would be 3 variant covers. As a completionist, a some may call my collecting habits a bit manic, I had to get as many of them as humanly possible. For every # in the different series, I would be purchasing 4 different covers from my LCS on my subscription. There would be times where additional variant covers would be published, and I would buy them as well. These additional covers were limited and so carried a higher price tag.

At the time, it really didn't matter that much to me because I felt like I need to have them to keep my collection in tact. When I couldn't get the variants at my LCS, I would have to turn to online sources to get them. There were so many it felt like I was living through the 90's again with all the various special covers that were published. Examples such as:

When they finally stopped publishing Lady Death for a time, there was a part of me that was relieved. I felt like a huge weight had been lifted from my shoulders, and I could again breath easy. But now, every time a new title comes-out, it seems like publishers flood collectors with a series of variant covers again. On Comic Collector Live, there are 121 individual entries for Star Wars #1 from Marvel Comics! That's insanity!

I admit that money also plays a role in this dilemma, as if I purchase less comic books for my ever-growing collection, I will be able to use that money for other purposes such as paying bills, expanding/continuing my fundraising activities with Comic Book Covers 4 Cancer, growing my collection of Funko Pops, etc.

I don't even know every title that I have on my subscription list. I just pick-up the comics as I can, enter them into my database and add them to the collection. I know that at least 1 of the titles that I get is being published twice a month! ACK!

As I mentioned before, there are some titles that I think I will continue to collect for pure nostalgia of it. I feel like I need to let go of several titles from my list. I don't want to give-up comics altogether, and I will NEVER stop collecting, reading and reviewing trades and graphic novels, but I know I need to step back and take an introspective look at what's on my list versus what I actually want to continue receiving.

I'm not going to say that this is the biggest decision of my life, but it does feel like a huge change for me.

Thank you for taking the time to read this. Writing this post has been quite cathartic and it feels like a lot of what has been weighing me down recently is now lifted.

On that note, I think I will also provide those of you who actually read my blog through to the end a little update as to what my continued plans are for this blog.

I know that I have been remiss of my duties of producing a regular series of reviews, and for that I apologize. I haven't been reading as much as I would like, and I actually don't have a large stack of trades that need reviewed as I normally have had in the past. I will be devoting some time this week to writing, as I have decided to take some time to myself from work. I hope to have some reviews scheduled for at least the next month or 2 by the end of the coming week.

As those of you who also follow my non-profit, Comic Book Covers 4 Cancer, I have been actively working to get attending artists for this years Rose City Comic Con to donate a cover at the event. I'm proud to say that we have already lined-up 4 new artists who will be contributing to our cause: Katie Cook, Chip Zdarsky, Jim Mahfood and Valentine De Landro. I have reached-out to many others, and will continue to provide updates on our Facebook page.

I'm also proud to announce that we will again be receiving a generous donation of 10 grading services from CBCS at RCCC. The last time we joined forces, the bids for the covers were incredible. I can't wait to see what will come from this years donations. Here's what we received last time:

So excited for September!

1 comment:

  1. Have to say I've struggled with this myself as well as discussing and modifying pull lists with many customers. A few of my older (older than either of us) customers have decided to stop their long running subscriptions in the past few years too. Mainly Marvel subscribers disillusioned with newer marketing tactics that seem to be diluting their favorite characters.
    For me and most of the customers that maintain older series, the main thing that comes up is the competist mentality for sure. Most recently I was going to skip the new Ghost Rider series, but the completist got the better of me. Sad to say I was alright that they cancelled past issue #5... (90's Ghost Rider is my favorite character, but the character hasn't been written well since Jason Aaron's run IMHO)
    I did cut a couple things, this being the first time really ever that I stopped collecting a title i decided to start, but really, when I look at my current nearly 50 pull list titles, I just love them all too much to stop collecting.
    But if you can decide on things to remove, definitely do so. It's the mature thing to do.
    You support the industry and your charity of choice, so no need to spend more than you feel comfortable on collecting. =:xB