When Is It Time To Quit Collecting Comics?

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This is a question I've struggled with most of my life. If it weren't for my sense of self, I probably would have given up on comics twenty or twenty-five years ago (my mid to late teens). To this day, my mother belittles the fact that I read them. Growing up, I knew very few people who collected them, and most kids who found out I read them gave me grief for it, like it was something I should have given up when I reached my teens. I feel like I should be lying back on a couch at the moment, as one of you duly takes notes and says encouraging things like, "Mm-hm," and "I see" and "Please, go on," but frankly, those things are hurtful, and damaging to a degree. Even today, I can be choosy about where I take a comic with me to read, because of the reaction I might get. For you see, my sense of self has allowed me to continue reading comics despite the lack of support, but has not made me an extrovert by any means. I'm not entirely closed off from the world, but I loathe the prospect of hearing ridicule of my hobby. Thankfully, movies of recent years have made comics more socially acceptable, and public discussion of them is not so taboo as it once was. So I will talk about comics with anyone, but I for some reason still cling to that inability to read my comics outside of my home.

My mother's opinion is a bit odd, because it was she who gave me my first three comics, when I was little. Her criticism is that she gave me comics, because she wanted me to get interested in reading, but she thought I "would move on to books and other things." My argument to that is I did, but I didn't see a need to give up comics to do so. Comics, in particular New Teen Titans numbers 11 and 12, gave me a lifelong love of and interest in mythology. They helped build my vocabulary. A Spider-Man comic against illiteracy made me want to read Ivanhoe (although I haven't done that yet). In later years, Bone made me want to read Moby Dick (although sleeping Rat-Creatures made me want not to), and League of Extraordinary Gentlemen made me want to explore many classics of literature (I'm currently reading The Merry Adventures of Robin Hood). Way before that though, comics led me to science fiction novels, which led me to mystery novels, which led me to histories, poetry, and pretty much any kind of book. I tend to really love books of old words and phrase origins.

Comics made me want to draw, so I spent several years tracing the body types from the "Mighty Men and Monster Maker" (look it up), and drawing in my own details, to create original characters. I got to be decent at freehand drawing, but never great. I finally realized I was better at writing, from so much time spent on writing my characters' histories. Both of those came from my interest in comics. I've had a longstanding interest in publishing, because of comics. In recent years, comics have given me an interest in both history and geography.

Still, not everything is encouraging about my favorite hobby. In a previous blog, I had a lot to say about the "God Hates Nerds" protest, and that was because I had already been through that as an inner struggle, in my late teens. I became a Christian at age fifteen, and for a few years, struggled with whether my hobby was sin or not. Things about "graven images," "hero worship," and about your heart being in the place you put your treasure gave me rise to question my devotion to God. I gave up comics a couple of times, because of these concerns. The first time, I was twelve short of having two thousand comics, and I sat in my room, ripping every one of them in half, top to bottom. After a short time, I got back into them for awhile, and hit a patch of life that left me analyzing everything. That time, I sold my collection to a comic store - probably another two thousand comics - and gave the money to my church. After a time, I got back into them again, because I decided that every interest and developed talent I had was because of comics, and I don't think God's upset about that. I also gained a better (but in no way perfect) understanding of my faith, and decided that comics are not a hindrance to my relationship with God unless I make them such.

Now, ten or fifteen years later, I've hit a stint of unemployment, and have not bought enough comics to speak of, for several months, simply because of the lack of money. I had to do a major, dire tightening of the money belt, and let's face it - comics are fun, and an ongoing hobby, but they are hardly "essential." So when it comes to "the house payment or comics," or "eating or comics," comics are going to lose. There's been a plus side. There are a lot of unread trade paperbacks and unread back issues in my collection, so I've been catching up here and there. I've been reading Comic Vine, and try to find the five bucks for Previews, so I can at least have a passing knowledge of what's going on in comics right now. To be honest though, this isn't so much to keep up with my favorite titles, but because I have my own characters I'd like to get into print, and I like to know what's coming out, to avoid duplication.

I've been looking at my collection the last few months though, and I've been wondering: is it time to quit collecting? My current collection is somewhere around one hundred to one hundred fifty magazine boxes and short boxes, including three bookcases of trade paperbacks. My mother - ever ridiculing of my hobby - asked me a couple of years ago, "What are you going to do with all of those?" As baleful as her opinion is to me in this matter, it was a fair question, and I've been quietly considering it ever since. I've made moves to two different states with my comics. One of them took me across the continent, and I left half of my collection in a climate controlled storage. I now have a three bedroom house, and one bedroom is taken up with comic boxes. My bookcases in my home office library are half-full of trade paperbacks and hardcovers. If for no other reason, I'm thinking of not collecting anymore, simply due to space considerations.

Now, I'm sure that I won't quit collecting entirely, but I think my interests will shift a little. I like the idea of owning more DC Archive editions, and of finishing my collection of IDW's volumes of Dick Tracy. I'd like to finish my Milestone, Ultraverse, and New Universe collections at some point, so I can read them in their entirety. There are other things I'd like to read, of course. Still, I'm thinking that it's time to stop chasing everything and devouring it with hungry eyes, as I have done for so many years. ...It's so incredibly odd to be saying that, because comics, collecting comics, and wanting to be in the business of comics, have been my whole life for so long, I never thought I'd see the day where I'd think of not being so into them.

I don't mean "my whole life," in a fanboyish way. I mean it's been my focus; my goal; my mission to get into comics. Every interest and hobby has been with that in mind. Everything I read, I read with the thought of, "How can I apply this to comics?" My interest in comics publishing has been because I want to know what makes the industry tick, so I can break in. I've had plenty of other life things though, so it's not like I'm holed up in my nerd cave, ignoring the world. I've had my faith, girlfriends, jobs, cars, major moves, and own a house. I have not been the most social person, but when reading is your hobby and writing is your passion, you necessarily spend long hours to yourself, and I have done so.

There are other reasons though. My priorities are shifting. For many years, my focus has been on merely paying my bills, enjoying my hobby, and tweaking my original characters here and there. Now, I see the real possibility of a book. I also feel that I'm ready to move back to my hometown, to be closer to family and friends. I want to be an uncle to my brother's kids, and there's someone back home that I might like to marry. The truth is though, all of those things take money, and I have spent years pouring any extra money into this hobby. I'm starting to think that enough is enough - that maybe it's time to focus on life a little more than I have on entertainment. That's a decision for me though, not an indictment against anyone else.

I've reread this blog, thinking that it sounds a little depressing, but I'm not depressed. I'm actually excited about moving on to the next thing in life, and figuring out how comics will fit into that (because they will fit somewhere, I'm sure). Perhaps a little nervous too, as I usually get nervous about any change, but especially because it concerns such a huge element in my life. Still, this isn't even a hard decision. I am changing the way I collect comics, because there are other things that I need in my life. Have any of you ever gotten to this point? Where you still love comics, but you had to lessen their place in your life, to accomplish other things? Let me see your thoughts in the comments, and thanks for reading.

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Posted by Caligula

never
 
why would you have to stop?
run out of space? get a new place or trade/sell some comics to make room for more.
Girlfriend/Boyfriend complaining about them? remind them of their vices

Posted by IrishX

"When is it time to quit" 
 
I'd say when the choice is between paying your bills and putting food on the table or getting comics that would be the time to quit. 
 
Also, who cares what anybody else thinks. Do what makes you happy (as long as it doesn't hurt others). If you do want to hurt others get into MMA... lol.

Posted by cbishop
@Caligula: No, this decision's for me, not anyone else.  My collection's spread across two states, and the part I have with me is crowding my house.  I don't think I want a new mortgage just to have more space for my comics.  I'm ready to pare it down some.  Some. ;)
Posted by cbishop
@IrishX: LOL, oddly enough, I did briefly train in a gym that trains boxers and MMA guys (I wanted to learn boxing).  I've seen Joe "Daddy" Stevenson spar in practice, and let me tell ya, for a little guy, his punches sound like gunshots.  The guy's a-freakin'-mazing. 
 
As for the rest, that was pretty much the catalyst for quitting this time.  I can't eat comics, and can't live in 'em, so comics are the first things to go down when I start cutting expenses.
Posted by Decoy Elite
NEVER.  That is all that needs to be said on this subject.
Posted by csimon

never
Posted by Arthur James Windsor

When your to poor is the only viable excuse

Posted by spider-man 2996

NEVER!!!
Posted by cbishop
@csimon:
@Arthur James Windsor:
@spider-man 2996:  
Did you guys get together on that answer? lol   ...In seriousness though, that was me, several years ago.  I'm not "quitting" like alcoholics have to quit when they stop drinking.  I just think it's time to put some of my money into other things.  Hopefully, one of those things will be a book that some of you will spend your money on. lol

@Arthur James Windsor said:

"When your to poor is the only viable excuse "


LOL at this, but I do have this "excuse" - money's tight, man.  Money's tight. ;)
Edited by Cezar_TheScribe

 
 
  And.....not even then.  Comic collecting post mordem.    
 
 
@Caligula said: Girlfriend/Boyfriend complaining about them? remind them of their vices " 
 
get rid of them. ;) 
 
Comic collecting isn't a vice.
Posted by cbishop
@Cezar_TheScribe said:
"get rid of them. ;)  Comic collecting isn't a vice. "

True dat.  In fact, I've often said that yeah, I might spend a lot of money on comics, but I could be pouring it into drugs, alcohol, hookers, or something like that.  Comics have helped keep me out of trouble.  Also, in my experience, when a girlfriend wants me to quit spending money on comics, it's usually because she wants me to spend the money on her.  There's a time and place for that kind of spending, but it doesn't have to be to the exclusion of my hobby.  However, my hobby does not exist to the exclusion of my  loved ones, either.  It's all about the balance.
Posted by N7_Normandy
@Caligula said:
" never
 
why would you have to stop?
run out of space? get a new place or trade/sell some comics to make room for more.
Girlfriend/Boyfriend complaining about them? remind them of their vices "
I agree with this.  I will never give up comics for any reason.
Posted by Green Skin

You can quit collecting comics anytime, just don't ever stop reading them.

Edited by cbishop
@Decoy Elite:
@csimon:
@Arthur James Windsor:
@spider-man 2996:
@Cezar_TheScribe:
@N7_Normandy:
@Green Skin:

Everyone is answering the question in the title, but did anyone actually read the blog?  I know it's long, but this is a discussion forum.  I get it: "Comikz 4 Life."  Does anyone have a comment that actually inspires thought and further discussion?  This is not purely aimed at the people I'm replying to, but to forum folk in general: READ THE BLOG BEFORE POSTING A RESPONSE!  This isn't a video, where you have to try to get the first comment in.  Sheesh. 
 
EDIT: Yes, this was a little cranky.  It's time for me to go eat something.  Perhaps I should make my blogs a little shorter, for the Internet attention span. :^/
Posted by SuperTide

NEVER

Posted by Caligula
@cbishop said:
" @Caligula: No, this decision's for me, not anyone else.  My collection's spread across two states, and the part I have with me is crowding my house.  I don't think I want a new mortgage just to have more space for my comics.  I'm ready to pare it down some.  Some. ;) "
fair enough. but i wouldn't.
however i do understand your decision.
Edited by Amegashita

  Just because you're not collecting comics doesn't mean you don't love them and that you shouldn't read them.  Everyone has their goals and to some reading comics can help set them further along the path of that goal.  As you get older and have your own problems to face so collecting comics isn't really such a main focus point as paying your bill and having food to eat.  Comics are fun, I agree with that, but I also agree that when you want to go forward in life you don't have to put comics as a main focus.
 
  I love comics, and I also love football (stay with me on this one) but with college life coming up and having to decide what I want to do with my life in the future I had to lessen their place in my life to focus on accomplishing my goals.  Football is fun but it's not going to be there forever, I can kinda sorta say the same about comics.  At one point in your life you need to decide on what is important to you and then stick with it. 

Posted by Green Skin
@cbishop said:
" @Decoy Elite:
@csimon:
@Arthur James Windsor:
@spider-man 2996:
@Cezar_TheScribe:
@N7_Normandy:
@Green Skin:

Everyone is answering the question in the title, but did anyone actually read the blog?  I know it's long, but this is a discussion forum.  I get it: "Comikz 4 Life."  Does anyone have a comment that actually inspires thought and further discussion?  This is not purely aimed at the people I'm replying to, but to forum folk in general: READ THE BLOG BEFORE POSTING A RESPONSE!  This isn't a video, where you have to try to get the first comment in.  Sheesh. 
 
EDIT: Yes, this was a little cranky.  It's time for me to go eat something.  Perhaps I should make my blogs a little shorter, for the Internet attention span. :^/ "
Just because someone posts a short reply doesn't mean they didn't read the whole blog.   Since you want a more in depth reply, here ya go.
 
It seems like you are waaaaaay to preoccupied with what other people think about comics and your reading them.  If you enjoy collecting them, then collect them.  It's that simple.   It's pretty clear that you love comics, but you're too concerned about it being acceptable to others.  Be yourself man, don't try to be what you think others would approve of.
 
If you are running out of room to store them, then sell some off.  Why even have that many comics in your collection?  Just keep your favorites, the noteworthy issues and the most valuable, sell off the rest.   It's not like they are going to do much for you other than take up space. 
 
Lastly, and honestly no offense meant here, but thinking comics are a sin is the most ridiculous thing I've ever heard.  Why would god care that you enjoy art and story?  That's all comics really are, just art and story.  By that logic you'd have to give up television, music, and video games too. 
Posted by -The Renegade-

Hey man! I'm 18 years old, so I guess your much older than me, but even so, I saw a lot about myself in what you wrote. It happens to me too sometimes that I'm hesitant to take out my comics and read them in public places, but honestly you just have to say to yourself that you don't care about what other people think, since you're never going to see them again in your life. I know it's easy to say and harder to do, but I don't think there's any other way, just take your comic out of your bag and enjoy it. 
When is it time to stop? I don't think there is a time except if you lose interest or have to pay your bills like you said. Everyone has their hobbies, some people buy clothes, others like video games, some buy fancy sport's car.... so if you like comics and you want to read them and talk about them go ahead. And if some people think that comics are just for kids and not interesting, well tell them to read some before jumping to conclusion. Comic books are such a great thing, they're a whole different ''universe''. Seriously it let's anyone enjoy what they're doing without having to think about their problems or anything else.... And if you think that space is the problem ( I'm talking about comic books taking a lot of space) well think of it as a good problem and not a bad one...
You like these types of books and you have the money to buy them ?? well don't quit, just sit back and enjoy your books... that's all I have to say.

Edited by cbishop
@Amegashita: I love how you said "(stay with me on this one)" like the mere mention of football would make the comic fan's eyes glaze over.  Anyway, I laughed myself silly until my vision cleared up. ;)
 
@-The Renegade-: You've kind of pegged where I'm at now.  I don't mind talking to people about comics, and I will take them with me, if that's what I want to read while I'm out.  But sometimes, my inner sixth grader comes out, and says, "Hey man, why don't you take that Walter Mosley book instead?" (Or whatever, as long as it's not a comic.)  It's not as much of an issue for me as the blog makes it out to be, but that scarred ["scarred," not "scared"] inner child rear's his head at times. lol 
 

@Green Skin said: 

 
"Just because someone posts a short reply doesn't mean they didn't read the whole blog.   Since you want a more in depth reply, here ya go. 
 
Yeah, I've had a couple of off-center posts today, and I apologize.  I clearly need to eat before I post to the forums. :} 
 
It seems like you are waaaaaay to preoccupied with what other people think about comics and your reading them.  If you enjoy collecting them, then collect them.  It's that simple.   It's pretty clear that you love comics, but you're too concerned about it being acceptable to others.  Be yourself man, don't try to be what you think others would approve of. 
  
The reply to Renegade mostly applies here.  It really isn't as much of a problem now as it was when I was a kid, but it's still not something I really flaunt.  If it comes up, I'll tell anyone, "Yep, I've been collecting 'em for over thirty years," and I can go on-and-on about them, because they are a passion for me.  But I've never been that guy that wears the Flash symbol because he's running track, or a GL T-shirt, or who puts a "My Other Car is the Batmobile" bumper sticker on my car (it's magnetic, and it's on my refrigerator [it was a gift]).  I guess it's just: I don't want to be "the comic book guy," y'know?  Not the Simpson's character - I mean I just don't want that to be my defining characteristic.  Not because I'm ashamed of it, but because there's more to me than that.  If I really cared what other people thought of me collecting comics, I'd have stopped years and years ago.

If you are running out of room to store them, then sell some off.  Why even have that many comics in your collection?  Just keep your favorites, the noteworthy issues and the most valuable, sell off the rest.   It's not like they are going to do much for you other than take up space. 
  
Mostly, I have that many comics because I like that many.  Some of it has to do with ten cent sales - 300 comics for $30?  Woot! Woot!  I've been to a few of those.  I've gotten them for all sorts of reasons, but now it's the monster in the middle bedroom. lol  Your suggestion is actually exactly what I've been thinking of - just keeping what I really want and getting rid of the rest.

Lastly, and honestly no offense meant here, but thinking comics are a sin is the most ridiculous thing I've ever heard.  Why would god care that you enjoy art and story?  That's all comics really are, just art and story.  By that logic you'd have to give up television, music, and video games too.  "  
 
This is a whole other issue, and I probably won't cover it completely or satisfactorily here, but it's one of those things that churches do sometimes, especially on the heels of revival, and that's where I got involved in church.  And that church view sometimes is: if it's anything that can take your focus off of God, then it's a sin, and you must get rid of it from your life.  In truth, it's not a completely bad view (stay with me on this one) <winks to Amegashita>.  It's similar to the alcoholic who starts his recovery by pouring all the liquor in the house down the drain, but with God, it really doesn't need to be so permanent.  When you're taking those first few baby steps into faith, it MAY be necessary to remove the thing you spend the most time on, while you get used to finding time for God.  It's sort of retraining yourself to have a balance between the things of this life and the things of God. 
 
The PROBLEM is: most Christians don't treat it as finding a balance, they treat it as a formula: if I do this, then I will be living a holy/perfect/sin-free life.  That's just never going to be the case, but still, in the initial zeal of revival or post-revival, a lot of stuff like that can be initiated, and then it becomes policy.  Before you know it, people aren't watching TV because of the "un-Godly influences," they won't listen to any music except "Christian music," or allow video games to "influence their behavior."  The bad thing is: I'm not just picking out your examples, I've actually seen those kinds of teachings in the church.  Comics were never addressed by the church I went to, but it's been addressed by religious people. 
 
There have been books like Comic Books Exposed, by Bob Larson; Who Needs a Super Hero?, by H. Michael Brewer, and Holy Superheroes!, by Greg Garret.  I've never read CBE, but it was promoted by its author in a tone that made it sound like Seduction of the Innocent revisited.  Holy Superheroes! takes a positive spin, looking for comic book metaphors to illustrate themes in the Bible, sort of like The Gospel According to The Simpsons or The Gospel According to The Matrix.  Meanwhile, WNaSH? is sort of inbetween the two, looking for positive and negative things in comics, but leaning a little more towards the negative. 
 
You have to realize: all of this stuff was thrown at me in my mid teens, when I was still struggling to define myself.  At the same time, parents, school and church are telling me how they think I should define myself.  Add that to parents haggling over who has me on the weekends and summers, the rise and fall of grades, my bright idea to move out at seventeen, and also dealing with real faith issues, like the potential of sex before marriage, and you've probably got one individual who is dang near completely FUBAR. lol 
 
That first time I got rid of a collection, there were serious things going on - a true crisis of faith - and axing the collection was just a symptom of how I dealt with the real problem.  The second time, that was just something I wanted to do.  I don't really suppose it had anything to do with the comics, except that the comics are what I sold so that I could contribute to what was going on at the church.  That was a sacrifice for my then-young life, and an action of sacrifice is what I was looking for.  This time around, it's really more about the space, and being just a little tired of having all the unread books around (they just piled up faster than I could read them).  I think it's just time to strip some of the weight off, is all.  No biggie this time.  It has a little to do with my faith, but then, I try to live so that everything in my life has at least a little to do with my faith. (Whether I am successful or not is another issue, and completely on me). ;) 
 
I guess what I'm saying about all of that is that the religious issues, too, are old issues, and not really a factor now. I was just trying to explain why they were ever a factor.  I've pretty well balanced that out now.   Well, sorry the response is so long.  I don't think I know how to write a short response. lol
Posted by -The Renegade-

No problem for the long response lol.... you have a problem you want some opinions... anyways I've told you everything I thought about your question, so I hope it helped a little bit, just wanted to get some new on the decision you'll take or have taken.

Posted by Theworldbreaker

Dude what the hell? how do you buy so many comics it fills up  a portion of your house? you got to find ways to not end up like that seriusly tell me all comics that you read and maby i could help solve this space sutiation.
Posted by Nighthunter
@Theworldbreaker said:
" Dude what the hell? how do you buy so many comics it fills up  a portion of your house? you got to find ways to not end up like that seriusly tell me all comics that you read and maby i could help solve this space sutiation. "
keep in mind how long he has been collecting
Posted by iLLituracy

Storage works, as well.

Posted by Primmaster64

hmmm

Posted by jloneblackheart

If you enjoy it, never stop. 
 
I think the greater question, one which I face, is 'When should I start selling or giving away my ever growing comic collection?'

Moderator
Posted by cbishop

@Nighthunter said:

" @Theworldbreaker said:
" Dude what the hell? how do you buy so many comics it fills up  a portion of your house? you got to find ways to not end up like that seriusly tell me all comics that you read and maby i could help solve this space sutiation. "
keep in mind how long he has been collecting "

 
It has a little to do with how long I've been collecting, but keep in mind that I've gotten rid of two collections, before the one that's currently overrunning my spare bedroom (and keep in mind that there is no bedroom furniture in that room - just shelves on two walls, and the rest is floor space, filled with boxes).  Part of the buildup is ten cent sales, where I've bought boxes of comics at a time.  Part of it is finding good deals on trade paperbacks.  I go somewhere that's got an entire series run of trades, and they're all half price or lower.  So I whip out the credit card and buy 'em all.  Haven't done that in a couple years I guess, but I did it enough to have a pretty good TPB collection.  And lastly, it's probably a little bit of "stress spending."  If something's bothering me - especially if the bills are bearing down on me - I have been known to blow the steam build-up by finding some comics to buy.  I think I've stopped that too though.  Lots of little things contribute to the monster collection. 
 
Also, Worldbreaker (and anyone else interested): if you've got some comics you're looking for, hit me up in a PM, and if I have 'em, maybe we can work something out.  I'm not always into the most popular titles though, which is why it's probably easier if you just tell me what you're looking for, rather than me trying to list all the stuff I have. ;)
 
@iLLituracy said:

"Storage works, as well. "


The other half of my collection is in storage in a different state, and I need to get to it one day.  When I'm able to do that, if at all possible, I will not use storage again.  A good, climate controlled storage unit and some Gorilla Racks are great for storing a big collection, but it gets costly over time.  Plus, with mine being in another state, I face the problem of losing what's in my storage, if something happens where I cannot pay for it.  That almost happened this month, but I have been saved from that for now.  It is a viable option though, if you can afford it.

Posted by Girth

Keep the best & sell the rest.

Posted by cbishop
@jloneblackheart said:
"If you enjoy it, never stop. 
 
I think the greater question, one which I face, is 'When should I start selling or giving away my ever growing comic collection?' "

Jlone', I think THAT is really what I've been asking here, but I think the answer I have come up with is: when I need to start selling or giving away my collection, it's time to re-examine my spending habits. lol   When I can get the other half of my collection out of storage, I will likely be selling a large portion of it.  Unfortunately, I don't have many that are very valuable, so it'll either be the right collector willing to buy, or a bulk sale to a comic shop, where I'll likely make little money on it.  I have pretty much decided that I need to seriously re-evaluate what I am keeping.  It's probably going to be Archive editions and favorite story arcs.  Once I cut the extraneous books from the collection, that should help quite a bit with the space situation. 
 
The real question for me is: "Will I read all of the ones that are unread, before I get rid of them?"  That number grew out of control, thanks to those ten cent sales, and those times when I was living in someone else's house, and only had room for a box or two at a time.  I would often have to move boxes to storage, just to make room for the new stuff I was buying, and in that way, I piled up several boxes of unread comics.  Just buying the next issue I "had to have," before I even read the previous buys.  Crazy.  That is stopping for sure.
Posted by SumoSlamMan

I think I'm a bit lucky in that I've never been ashamed to enjoy collecting or reading comics.  Then again, I was never what you could call an outsider or a "nerd."  Don't get me wrong, I'm a HUGE nerd, but I was never small enough to be bullied and I've always had a ton of self confidence (fortunately for me) but enough tooting of my own horn.  I'm 23 and I've only got around 3-4 thousand comics in my collection, and I've never once seriously considered selling them.  I've always imagined introducing comics to my children and my grandchildren (God willing) and my nieces and nephews.  Comics have made me the man I am today and I don't think I could ever stop collecting them.  They're my life.   
 
You brought up a lot of really interesting topics, especially the whole Christian influence.  I'm a practicing Catholic, went to an all guy Catholic high school, and I started really collecting my Sophomore year.  That's when I was REALLY bitten by the comics bug.  Dude, do yourself a favor, save yourself from many a sleepless night filled with regret, don't stop collecting.  Why should you?  Heck, maybe if space is really an issue you could think about donating some to a library.  I graduated from Michigan State University and they actually have the largest library of comic art in the world and they're always looking for more comics.  It's really an awe inspiring place, very humble, and they take comics seriously in an incredibly academic professional way.  It's awesome.  That's where I plan for my own collection to end up one day... If I can bare to let them go. 
 
Don't stop collecting man.  We're all behind you.

Posted by cbishop

@Girth said:

"Keep the best & sell the rest. "

 
That's the plan, man. ;) 

@SumoSlamMan: I don't think I will ever completely stop collecting, Sumo', but I do think it's time to thin it out a bit, and keep only what truly interests me.  I have had the same dreams, about passing on a love for comics to children, grandchildren, etc., and I'd still like to do that.  However, I am a huge believer in balance, and a room overrun with comics - though a nerdy dream of mine fulfilled - is just a touch off-balance.  So, despite this blog's title, I won't be quitting, but I will be readjusting.  Thanks for the kind words of support though. :)

Posted by FadeToBlackBolt

I'll stop collecting comics when the World becomes a place worth living in. So, I doubt I'll ever stop.

Edited by cbishop
@FadeToBlackBolt: Fade', I get ya, but I think it's time to start making the world a place worth living in, and that's why I want to cut back on the collecting right now - so I can put the money towards some other things.  I want to move back to the state that most of my family is in.  There's also someone there who may want to marry me, if I ask her.  ...I don't think this is mid-life crisis - I actually think I had that much earlier (lol and yipes, at the same time).  I think it's more that I've done the moving around and sampling things.  I mean: I live in Las Vegas, for crying out loud!  It doesn't shine like the idea of being near family and friends again though. 
 
If you're even ten years younger than me, learn that lesson now, rather than when you get to be my age.  It doesn't have to be "family and friends," but whatever it is that you want, figure it out now, rather than later.  I am by no means disappointed with my life, but I just feel like the figuring it out for me has come a little late.  It's amazing how a person can have a high I.Q., and be so dumb sometimes. 
 
I think comics are one of the greatest hobbies in the world, but the fact is: unless it's your job, it's not going to help you get by in this world.  If you plan for it to be your job, grab the reins and start driving towards that goal now.  I've been saying "one of these days" for years, until now, where I have to admit: that day may never come.  It still might, but I have lessened my chances by dreamin' about it, instead of drivin' towards it.  If comics aren't your job, then enjoy 'em, but find something to make the world worth living in for you.  Now, rather than later. ;)
Posted by FadeToBlackBolt
@cbishop said:
" @FadeToBlackBolt: Fade', I get ya, but I think it's time to start making the world a place worth living in, and that's why I want to cut back on the collecting right now - so I can put the money towards some other things.  I want to move back to the state that most of my family is in.  There's also someone there who may want to marry me, if I ask her.  ...I don't think this is mid-life crisis - I actually think I had that much earlier (lol and yipes, at the same time).  I think it's more that I've done the moving around and sampling things.  I mean: I live in Las Vegas, for crying out loud!  It doesn't shine like the idea of being near family and friends again though. 
 
If you're even ten years younger than me, learn that lesson now, rather than when you get to be my age.  It doesn't have to be "family and friends," but whatever it is that you want, figure it out now, rather than later.  I am by no means disappointed with my life, but I just feel like the figuring it out for me has come a little late.  It's amazing how a person can have a high I.Q., and be so dumb sometimes. 
 
I think comics are one of the greatest hobbies in the world, but the fact is: unless it's your job, it's not going to help you get by in this world.  If you plan for it to be your job, grab the reins and start driving to that goal now.  I've been saying "one of these days" for years, until now, where I have to admit: that day may never come.  It still might, but I have lessened my chances by dreamin' about it, instead of drivin' towards it.  If comics aren't your job, then enjoy 'em, but find something to make the world worth living in for you.  Now, rather than later. ;) "
Good advice, sadly it doesn't apply to me. I've got nothing, comic books are the only reason I haven't killed myself due to my....disabilities. I live between Wednesdays (Thursdays, technically, since Aus gets them a day later) :)
 
Nevertheless, it sounds like life has some good stuff ahead for you, so I wish you luck with that =]
Posted by turoksonofstone

Never.

Posted by cbishop
@FadeToBlackBolt said:
"Good advice, sadly it doesn't apply to me. I've got nothing, comic books are the only reason I haven't killed myself due to my....disabilities. I live between Wednesdays (Thursdays, technically, since Aus gets them a day later) :)  Nevertheless, it sounds like life has some good stuff ahead for you, so I wish you luck with that =] "

Fade', I truly don't know what to say here.  I hope your outlook changes for the better.  If Thursday is what you're hanging onto, then thank God for Thursdays.
Posted by FadeToBlackBolt
@cbishop said:
" @FadeToBlackBolt said:
"Good advice, sadly it doesn't apply to me. I've got nothing, comic books are the only reason I haven't killed myself due to my....disabilities. I live between Wednesdays (Thursdays, technically, since Aus gets them a day later) :)  Nevertheless, it sounds like life has some good stuff ahead for you, so I wish you luck with that =] "
Fade', I truly don't know what to say here.  I hope your outlook changes for the better.  If Thursday is what you're hanging onto, then thank God for Thursdays. "
Heh, don't worry about it. I'll be right. And yes, Thursdays are awesome. 
 
And good luck with the proposal, if you decide that's what you want to do, of course :)
Posted by cbishop
@FadeToBlackBolt said:
"Heh, don't worry about it. I'll be right. And yes, Thursdays are awesome.   And good luck with the proposal, if you decide that's what you want to do, of course :) "

Thanks!  It is what I want to do, but some other things have to line up first - finances, move, etc.  That's why the cutback on comics.  Hopefully, it'll be what she wants too. ;)
Posted by texasdeathmatch

when you're homeless, addicted to meth, and collect dead kittens in your coat pockets. I think its about time...

Posted by Vance Astro

When you die...DUH!

Moderator
Posted by rogue_mar1e

what a silly question . 
why would you ever stop collecting ??? :)

Posted by ENGLENTINE

I am also a few years into middle age, and I touched on some of this in my Freaks and Geeks blog.  I have also been dealing with unemployment, now I am under employed.
 
1st : Man up and stop caring what others think. At this point you should have a stronger sense of self , and self confidence. No one ( even your mother ) has lived your life to get you where you are now. 
 
2nd. I have gotten by with my bills by selling my books. I am sure you can create some sort of tier system. What you like the most to least, and get rid of the worst stuff first. 
This can give money for bills, or to keep your hobby going. 
 
either way, you never have to stop if you don''t want to. When every thing is back to being peaches and cream, you can pick up where you left off.  
until then, enjoy those unread trades and comics. 
just don't forget to review them for the site.

Posted by cbishop

@ENGLENTINE: Hm, it seems that I wrote this blog too in the now.  I really don't mind that people know if I read comics or not... now, anyway.  I was more analyzing the "stigma" that it was for me in the past. Yeah, I mostly read them at home, but that really has more to do with keeping them in good shape, than hiding them from others.  I take a comic with me if I feel like it, but most times, they're just not practical to take along.  A trade paperback, maybe.  There is a little bit of the holdover from my childhood, but it's not that big a thing.  Unemployment's being dealt with, and the bills are being paid.  But thanks for your concern - "manning up" is not the issue.

Posted by DeathinFire


You know, I stopped "collecting" things many years ago.  Not just comics but a lot of things.  If something sits in my house, untouched for a year or more it's probably gotta go.  It's not being used so get it out of here.  You can still read comics.  No big deal.  But if you took all your old comics you aren't in love with and sold them to get some much needed cash, who cares?  If you haven't touched it in 6 months and probably wont for another 12 then why do you still have it?  I know there's this crazy idea that some people have that comics are an investment, but it seems to me that there's better ways to invest money out there.  Personally, I read comics because I want to read them, not keep them in a box collecting dust for the rest of my life.  Just like that DVD that hasn't been touched in 6 years, that coffee mug with the broken handle, that Stephen King novel I've already read, an old comic that no one's going to ever touch again is just wasting space.  Pass it along to someone who wants it.

 
It's time to stop buying comics when there's no lights on in your house to read them with.  When you get back on top of things, I recommend reading the TPB's.  Get maybe half of what you want to get and swap with a freind who has different stuff to read.  Just my 2 man, it's your life after all.

Posted by cbishop
@DeathinFire: Hey there, thanks for the comment.  You're pretty much spot on for me.  I'm not collecting now, due to no fun money.  When I have fun money again, buying trades will likely be the route I go.  As for "collecting," comics are it, mostly.  I made a list of things I collected, as I was getting out of high school.  There was about fifty things on it, and it was stuff like: pens, paper clips, business cards, rubber bands, etc.  Basically, if it was free, I collected it.  Maybe it was some sort of OCD, or maybe it was just a child holding onto everything he could, when it seemed other things were constantly being taken away.  I don't know, but once I made that list, and saw what an unbelievable collection of collections I had, I cleaned house, and put a stop to that crud. 
 
Now, I collect comics, but there's been a different reason for that.  I've always wanted to get into the business of comics, so I've collected and collected and collected... for the pleasure of reading them, certainly, but also as reference material.  I knew I had a lot of comics, but I don't think I really realized how big the monster was until I got my house a couple years ago, and got them in a place where I could really see it.  So yeah, I'll be selling some of 'em, because even though "reference" was the thought, a) I have yet to get into the comics biz, and b) I don't refer to them very much (probably partly because the collection is so big, I don't know where to look for what I want to refer to - lol). 
 
I appreciate the 2, man.  Really.
Posted by AMP - Seeker of Lost Knowledge

I myself have always wonder when I will stop. I enjoy reading and collecting comic books since I was like 8yrs old. Somewhere along I stopped until I was like 15 or 16 and revisited the comic book world at what was left of JAY AND SILENT BOB'S SECRET COMIC BOOK STASH Store in Los Angeles (now gone forever....except it's New Jersey branch.) As I continue my education in college, I still have a special place for comics as I want to use my education to receive my Associates of Arts Degree to become a writer for books and comics, an artist, or (and does not apply for the AADegree) build my own comic book store. I have this childish desire and yet I can not get away fom a story and art that draws my attention. I sacrafice some my spare time away from school to take a bus trip for some comics and yet their is some consequences for my actions. For now I have not went to shop in nearly 2 months and I'm gonna wait until late October to continue monthly trips for new releases of TEEN TITANs (new writer, new artist) and so far I have been keeping my act clean.
 
Plus, I'm a 2nd generation of a comic book collector. My father collected comics from mid-50's and 60's (THE SILVER AGE) and somehow stopped to lead a sucessful life as an optometrist. I was not aware that he was a comic book reader, and somehow I inheirit that quality. One day I will stop, and I will always admire them as I will save money for myself, my family (wife and children) and my career.

Edited by Son_of_Magnus

Until death do us part

Posted by cbishop
@AMP - Seeker of Lost Knowledge said:
"I myself have always wonder when I will stop. I enjoy reading and collecting comic books since I was like 8yrs old... One day I will stop, and I will always admire them as I will save money for myself, my family (wife and children) and my career. "
 
 That's kind of what I'm looking at right now.  I'm looking at some life changes, like wanting to get married, so comics are on hold out of necessity.  I've got plenty of unread stuff to keep me busy in the interim though. ;)

@Son_of_Magnus said:
"Until death do us part "
 
<sigh> At least you didn't say "never." ;)
Posted by fenixREVOLUTION

I would only quit if I completely lost interest in them or if it did come down to the necessities of life or comics, then naturally food and shelter would take priority. 

Posted by CATMANEXE

lol. just read all the responses in this thread and I'm picturing what a recovering Comic Book Addicts Anonymous group
in session would be like. in fact i'm pretty sure either a counselor or therapist at some point in my life actually told me
comic books we're unhealthy.

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