I've got somewhere in the neighborhood of 40 longboxes. Maybe 50. So many comics, purchased over 40 years.
And I remember thinking that there'd be a point, sometime in the future, that I'd want to go back and reread those books -- the good and the bad, just long runs, one after the other.
And it's suddenly occurring to me that the time to do that is running out. And I'm not much of a re-reader -- not when there's so much new stuff that's engaging me in the present, whether it's a comic or a novel or a movie.
And I wonder... is it time to sell these? Most of them? I think the answer is probably yes. I've got three, maybe four boxes of New 52 books. How much of that will I reread? Very little, I think -- it doesn't hit the nostalgia button for me, and a lot of it isn't that great. There's a lot of untapped potential there.
So I think that will be my first project. Condense 4 boxes of New 52 material into 1, and bring the rest to my comic shop (that *does* seem to buy back issues, even fairly recent ones -- which is rare these days). I doubt I'll get much for them. But some store credit, and 10 cubic feet of my house back... and maybe the inspiration to try it again with some older books. Cutting four boxes down to one, once a month.
Thinking about the New 52, what would I keep? The first things that come to mind are:
The Manapul run of Flash
The Azzarello/Chiang Wonder Woman
Maybe the DCYou Batgirl
Some Harley Quinn, maybe?
All-Star Western, perhaps
The Morrison'/Morales Action Comics run
Legion of Superheroes. (The New 52 Legion Lost can safely be forgotten.)
Frankenstein? I, Vampire? Both unusual titles that I bailed on, but might have more to offer in posterity than that era's Justice League.
Batman and Swamp Thing were both good, but I don't think they'll make the cut. Snyder is less appealing to me lately, and I'll always be able to find that stuff if the mood strikes (and Snyder's Batman is currently being reprinted in the Walmart Giants). Maybe I'll keep the Soule/Sais Swamp Thing -- I liked them, and it was more interested in doing new things than being a tribute to older creators (much as I loved the Paquette art).
I'm not sure what else. It'll be interesting to try this out next week, and see what I rediscover. And what fits.
Theoretically, every backissue is my collection is there to be re-read.
In reality, I don’t have enough time left in my life to re-read everything I own.
There is a lot I would like to cull from my collection, but I don’t want to just give it away.
I prefer reading comics in collections; almost everything I read is collected in one format or another. Except for Silver Age stuff, I would like to get rid of virtually every periodical comic book I have that is duplicated in a collection. Plus I would like to get rid of more recent stuff (“recent” being within the last 30 years) I know I will never read again. That still leaves a whole lot of comic books I may or may not ever read again.
I don’t have any answers, but I feel your pain.
Yeah, I don't want to give it away either. But I've made my peace with the fact that I won't be getting nearly what I paid for it, and if I get some store credit, that'll be fine. Maybe I'll buy some omnibuses of things that I'd otherwise never get rid of (like, say, Sandman) -- I'll never read the physical comics again, though I'll probably keep the signed issues I have. But I think I'd rather have gorgeous bound volumes of those books.
I wish that I could recall the name of this show which was about people with out of control collections (not that I mean you, of course) but the host/advisor brought this guy to a comic book shop with several long boxes with mostly late 80s/90s titles and was offered twenty-five cents per book which even took the host aback!
That doesn't surprise me in the least. Those books are mostly dollar-bin books at conventions. A quarter a book sounds about right in order to make that profitable for the shop (considering labor, storage, booth fees, etc).
There's not a lot of money in old comics after the Silver Age, and key issues in Bronze and beyond.
Getting rid of all duplication? Selling off comics that are also on the shelf in HC? It is a dream I have ...
Yeah, between collections and digital, it seems worth doing. Especially if we're going to move. Who wants to lug 50 longboxes across the country?
I'll share my knowledge on selling comics in bulk. I first started to sell some of my comics after I had moved for the third time in 5 years (thankfully the time I moved 3 timed in 10 months I had them in storage), and it is a pain.
Most of the New 52 doesn't have much resale value. The Snyder/Capullo run did, but it looks like it had cooled down a lot. With what you are currently plan on selling, and taking them to a shop. They will probably offer you a price per box (who wants to count 3 long boxes of fairly new comics?), Around here a fair price is about $50/box. That will put you at 16.7¢ to 20¢ per comic, so if you can get 25¢ a comic, I would take it and run. That would be from $62.50 to $75/box.
I'm basing my prices on that you can get from 250-300 comics on average in a longbox.
A couple of weeks ago I was at a show, and I sold a total of abut 3 longboxes. 2 1/2 were my dollar comics that have been well-picked over the past few years. It was great not having to load those back into my car.
Thanks, Travis! That's great to know.
I'm starting to slowly shift to some digital content in my first-run buying, figuring I don't want the hassle of reselling them later, and the fact that they don't take up space is a bonus, not a detriment. Right now, I'm buying Lois Lane, Dial H for Hero, Money Shot, and Usagi Yojimbo digitally -- Usagi on a bit of a delay, since IDW discounts their books after a couple months. Plus I'm reading the Mark Russell Red Sonja and the current run of JLA on a delay, whenever DC or Dynamite offer 99-cent sales on those titles. I think I'll be switching to that same plan (and that same waiting game) for the next Morrison Green Lantern series, although having just reread 1-12, I might keep going physical with them, since Sharp's art is so much fun.
But that's all beside the point. I kept for myself most of the things I expected, aside from All-Star Western. I'm keeping more Harley Quinn than I expect, but those might not make the next round, after a reread. I'm probably going to give Demon Knights another read sometime in the future, and then let some or all of it go; it changed writers midway through, and I remember being less happy with the second half. I also found about half of my issues of Future's End, which I want to reread before sending it away.
Anyway, I'm hoping to unload about 3 boxes every month or so. The next bunch will be older, for the most part, and depending what it is, I might list what I'm planning to send off to see if anyone here wants 'em. I figured with the New 52, there wasn't much audience for it here, but if I start dipping into the 80s and 90s, particularly, there might be some interest.
I didn't get $50 a box... more like $40, in store credit. But it's 3 boxes out of the house, and an excuse to give a couple of runs one last read (Blackest Night, Gail Simone's Red Sonja) before sending them out too!
I might get a better price for other comics. These were mostly New 52s, which are both recent *and* largely irrelevant to continuity, which is a one-two punch that means the demand for them is really low.
The next batch will be better... but also, probably harder to part with. And with the money I got, I bought some cool mardi-gras patterned curling pants!
I do reread a lot, which makes me comfortable keeping them around. Though i certainly won't get everything reread before I die.
I can't get into digital unless it's something that would be hard to obtain otherwise. I spend most of my day working on my laptop, reading in hard copy makes me feel I've stopped working.
I'm starting to really appreciate digital...especially as lettering on some books is smaller and smaller. I recently read Crowded, a fun sci-fi assassination comic, and have pretty much decided that future purchases will be digital; it's just too hard to read otherwise.
Unfortunately, I feel like I'm often rushing through the digital comics -- even though sometimes I actually spend more time on the page. It feels more ephemeral to me, like pretty much all writing on a screen. I'm not sure what I can do about that. It might be a generational thing.
I'm with you on the tiny lettering. The two Chris Ware books I read recently were especially hard to read in places. He delights in tiny little panels full of minuscule lettering! And I had no choice but to read the print versions, since they're not available digitally.