Pulling the Pull-List?
I think one of the reasons is because I have a habit of going into auto-pilot when it comes to purchasing and having to pick the individual issues off the shelves (and now selecting them on ComiXology) might make me stop to think about whether I was actually buying a book because I think it is a good book or out of habit. From time to time (last week being the latest occasion – hence this), I will write down a list of the books I am collecting to drill into my head that there are certain books I am buying that I am no longer enjoying or that I am giving a book one more issue for a few too many issues. I think this “pruning” is a necessary part of comic book collecting. I shall attempt to articulate why I think this is the case.
The first reason is that by buying your book you are casting your vote in favour it. You are telling the publisher or creator that what they are going on in a creative direction that you are enjoying. In the case of work for hire projects, you are backing the creative team the publisher has put on the book. You can of course voice your opinion on social media or via e-mail (try to be polite – this is my nice way of saying that you should not act like a crazy troll creature best removed from the rest of mankind). The final deciding factor, however, is nearly always the number of copies a book sells on a monthly basis. The second reason is that there are a lot of great books out there and, if you are like me, you have a limited budget so it would be better spend your hard earned cash on a book you are actually enjoying.
I extended this “pruning” to my graphic novel collection. This was necessitated by several moves which slapped me in the face and told me “You have a small library on your hands mister! Do you even read these things?!” This space issue no longer applies to my monthly books since I moved to digital but it means taking a look at the long boxes and the graphic novel shelves. Nowadays is a Golden Age for graphic novels, hardcovers, artist editions and so on. If I am going to continue to purchase these treasures, I am going to have to make some space. In the case of collected editions, this space saving comes using two methods. The first method is taking a look at the “wait for the trade” books that I am collecting in a similar method to my monthly books and deciding whether I should keep going with them or should I stop or in some cases sell all the volumes in that collection. The second method is by looking at your existing collection and deciding which volumes you are never going to look at again. This can be tough but think of it this way: by selling these volumes or donating them to a library, they will probably end up in the hands of someone who will get more pleasure out of them and might actually read them from time to time.
Anyway, that’s just my just my two cents for now. I’m off to practice what I preach because there are some new trades I want . I hopefully won’t stop to re-read every book in my collection. Oh! There’s Dark Knight Returns….