We like comic books. In fact, we love comics. But beyond that, we enjoy collecting comics, and we want to share some of our basic collecting tips with you. Some of these are common knowledge, but some of them you may not have thought of before. So before you go to the comic shop or your next convention, consider these helpful hints!
1) Only Buy What You Love.
This is hands down the most important rule in collecting. Unless you’re made of money, you will certainly be on some kind of budget. Buying what you love will keep you from regretting your purchases later on down the road. And speaking of money, don’t collect comics assuming you’ll make a profit on them some day. Buying comics as an investment is like buying lottery tickets for your retirement plan. Sure, you may get lucky and strike it rich, but the odds are stacked against you.
2) Protect Your Comics
While you might not ever get rich from those holo foil covers you bought in the 90’s, one way to guarantee that is to treat them like last month’s edition of Popular Mechanics.
Bag, board and box those comics. It’s a small price to pay to insure your books can stay as pristine as possible.
3) Organize Your Collection (part 1)
There are a number of ways to do this, but no matter if you choose to do by alphanumeric, publisher, character or creators, it makes it a lot easier to go back and enjoy an issue or two at a moments notice.
4) Organize Your Collection (part 2)
Once you’ve got your comics in order, we highly recommend that you make a list of what you have. You can do it as simply as title and issue, but we know of some people (maybe even our cohost Derek!) that have gone so far as to include publisher, writer, artist, inker, cover artist, variant cover, and volume/series! (Derek may have a problem; we’re getting him tested.)
There are a few programs and websites out there that can assist you with this, but we’ve found making your own database has its own merits.
There are a few reasons we recommend doing this. The first is to save you money in the long run. It’s very easy to buy multiple copies of back issues when you’re at a convention or visiting a local shop.
The second reason is for signatures. If you like to have your books signed by artists and writers, having a database in your computer makes it very simple to cross reference the guests that will be appearing at the next convention.
The last reason is for insurance. While we hope nothing ever happens to our collections, accidents happen. By having a documented and continually updated list, it will be much easier to prove to the insurance company what you had owned.
So that’s it for the basics! Just remember, collecting can be just as much fun as reading the stories themselves, but ultimately it’s all up to you on how to go about it.