Floppy Talk – To Collect or Not to Collect
My name is Patrick and I’m a comic book collector. The first step is to admit it right? Well I do, but I’m not sure how much longer I can keep it up. Comic books are getting more expensive, digital comic books are here, and trade collections are everywhere. With that in mind, is it really necessary to keep religiously collecting and bagging and boarding monthly comics? For the first time I’m actually getting serious about cutting out monthly titles and waiting for trades. Marvel’s decision to switch up the status quo and introduce the Heroic age also gives me a convenient opportunity to make a clean break and “jump off.”
This isn’t the first time I’ve tried to do this, every time I get right to the edge and before I can “jump” the collector in me talks me out of it. Your collection won’t be complete, he tells me. You’ll miss out on important stories and be behind the times, he says. The collector mentality is my Kryptonite. Every time I come to a rational and practical decision about changing my purchasing and collecting habits it comes along and forces me to do something crazy. Hey, complete run of “Web of Spiderman” I’m looking at you! Besides, it’s not like my collection is really worth anything. Rarity is what makes books valuable. This post comes out the same week that an original Superman broke all sales records at auction fetching 1.5 million. Why? Because it’s old and there are only a handful in existence. My favorite comics stored in my long boxes are anything but rare. With publication rates in the millions of copies during the 70s, 80s and 90s there are very few modern “rare” books.
If financial value isn’t the reason to collect, then what’s left is entertainment value. So it doesn’t matter what format my comics arrive in as long as they entertain me they’re worth it. Be they digital, trade hardcover, or paper backs if I enjoy them I’ll buy them and long box be damned! But wait, if I and others stop buying monthly, won’t publication rates go down and won’t that make current floppies more rare? Crap…