On the Run With New Comics

By Devin T. Quin

Because SOMEONE felt they needed the $10,000 reward money for turning me in to the Feds more than they needed a column this week, I, your humble comic book writer is on the freakin’ lamb. AGAIN. This happens every time; I put a down payment on a nice, one room abandoned shack in the middle of the woods away from the spy satellites and brain reading microwaves and THEN they find me and I have to pack up my collection of tin-foil hats and jars of my urine and escape into the night.

My crimes are both A) complex and B) about to have their statutes of limitations expire. Until then it’s cave living and squirrel dining for me.

WHAT’S THE POINT

The point, Mister or Missus Impatient, is that I had to liquidate a few (incriminating) long boxes of comic books to fund my flight. Lots of good stuff went. My entire run of Dan Slott She-Hulks and Avengers Initiative GONE. The entire run of the Sam Keith’s The Maxx, plus issue #1/2 and the 3-D issue had to go.

The guy who bought them was super nice, and didn’t mind conducting the entire transaction through the slit in my blood stained cheese cloth I use for a front door. As I was giving him the “Butcher Bill” of losses, ya know: “Oh, THAT box is great, it has The Amy Fisher Story comic book one-shot,” or “Oh yeah, make sure you read all those Richard Sala Evil Eye comics, they’re great,” the guy started to laugh.

“What’s so G.D. funny?!” I screamed through the cloth, my hand inching for my ice pick.

“Well, I guess I just find it great that you follow all these creators.” He said. “I just follow characters, I don’t follow the writers and artists across books.”

This led to a great conversation about comics, why they’re fun and who they’re for.

SKINNING A CAT

There are as many ways to collect comics as there are titles. I know people who ONLY follow artists, and never care who is writing or what the character is. Half of the stuff I sold were Chris Bachalo books from when I would just buy ANY Bachalo. Good luck with this approach. For every Mike Allred’s Untold Tales of Spider-Man Annual #1 (Truly an incredible comic) there’s also Mike Allred’s Books of the Golden Plates ( less a comic book and more a spectacular train-wreck.)

The same goes for writers. I had a few old issues of Ren and Stimpy comics just because Dan Slott wrote them. I’ve never found the “Buying Characters” approach to be that rewarding. For awhile I was buying every comic book staring Mr. T. I could find… reading them was a far more difficult proposition.

I pity me, too, Sir.

ON THE ROAD AGAIN

I’m a few long boxes lighter now, but I’m a bit wiser for the experience. Comics as a hobby can be enjoyed el solo lobo. I mean, let’s face it, the best way to enjoy a comic is in the privacy of your own home, naked and covered in honey. Talking to other fans, however, and sharing your collection with others is a joy that is infectious.

Happy reading, everyone!

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