I was thinking about my ever-growing comic book collection the other day, and I think I might have had something of an epiphany regarding its future. I was wondering what I was going to do with it in the future (as in ‘the near future’) because I have come to the point where I feel I just have too many of the damn things for comfort. There was never really a time when I said to myself, “self, I think I want to grow my collection to near-mammoth proportions. I want it to be massive!”, however it just seemed to go that way. Now I know there are many, many other comic collectors out there who have many, many more comics in their collections than I do but at 20 long boxes and counting, I think it is time for a personal comic hobby intervention of sorts. To that end I have decided that in the next week, when I transfer my collection over to a new shelving unit, would be the perfect time to start this comic cleansing.
After I have gone through everything I hope to end up with my collection divided into three main categories. The first of these would be the keepers, those comics which I still treasure highly enough to see remain in my collection. I honestly expect this to end up being the large majority of the floppies in my collection. The second category would be the market ready books. These would be the comics that I am ready to let go and which have some definite retail value on the secondary market. (ie, they are in demand by comic collectors based on what I see them going for on Ebay, Amazon or at the local comic book shops) The third and final category of comics would be the ones that I am ready to be rid of but which I would not expect to get much if anything for if I tried to sell them online or to a store or at a local comic book swapmeet. This category is the one that I expected to be a bit of a headache because I could already visualize myself stuck at a local comicbook show trying to sell them for next to nothing and hoping that I would at least make my money back on the cost of the table rental. This group of comics is also the focus of my earlier mentioned ‘epiphany’ (remember me mentioning that right at the start of all this?). I got to thinking that there must be a better alternative than to deal with the grief of trying to sell those low value comics with almost no likely monetary return, and that’s when it came to me. I decided that instead of selling them I should just give them away. However, I don’t really know many people with kids that might enjoy being given a bunch of comics to read (and kids just don’t seem to be in to them as much as they used to and that is a serious problem for the industry) and anyone with kids that I do know is not really too crazy about the idea of their home being a dumping ground for my collection. That is where my epiphany came in: I decided that I should just go ahead and donate the pile of less valuable stuff to a charity somewhere – but not just to somewhere random where they might never be sold and wind up taking up space on a shelf at the back of a charity store. No, instead I decidedloved funny books that I should go and donate them to somewhere that would have a decent chance of selling them and which could use any money that they got for them.
I decided that I should give them to the Brock House Seniors Society. I became aware of Brock House because my Mother is a member there and volunteers there on a regular basis. As a society, Brock House offers local seniors a social focal point, somewhere that they can gather to enjoy each other’s company, enjoy a guest lecture or performer, or relax and read the paper in the house library. In addition, the society regularly organizes outings for its members. My Mother volunteers in the library and is one of those enjoying the benefits of being a member there. The society receives a large part of its funding through various monetary donations and through fund raising efforts such as its Summer and Winter thrift sales. According to my Mother, these are a big hit every year and whenever they have any comics to sell they are an easy sell and usually are bought up by little kids with their parents or by grand parents looking for something to give to their grandkids to read. Seems that would be a good place to send some funny books that deserve agood home. lol
The other reason for sending my books there is that I would like to think that in some small way I am giving back to something that matters to my Mother, the person in my life who was directly responsible for my being able to buy, read and collect comics in the first place. It was my Mother who let me lose myself in the stories that those early comics had to tell in my early days. If she had not bought me my first few books and readily condoned my comic hobby through my younger years, there would not be any collection to speak of now. Now I know that I could insert some cynical comment here about my mother being responsible for the rows of long boxes taking up space in my home, but I won’t because I still really appreciate my hobby.
I love comics. I always have and I expect that I always will, and this will just be one more opportunity for me to say, “thanks Mum”.