Types of comic book collectors part 1: Readers (1/4)

When you start talking about making a comic book collection and investing. It’s easy to forget that some people don’t care about that.

Some people buy comics the same way they buy books, for the pure thrill of a well-written story. They buy comics to read them. They want that new book smells. To them, getting a variant cover is the same as getting a collector edition of a book. It makes your collection look good, but you’re still going to read the book.

Readers care about taking care of their comics, but not in the same way a person who buys for investing does. Investors know that too much handing can easily drop the value of a comic. And when you read a comic more than once it’s very easy to damage it. But readers, read anyway, it’s the experience. It’s turning through each page, getting to the end, and beign super excited for next week. It’s the same way with those who read manga, manhwa, and webtoon.

You may wonder why people who read don’t buy a trade paper. A trade paper (TP) is a collection of comics from a volume(it’s never the whole volume) printed together in one book. There are many reasons why those who love to read do and don’t buy them. For me, the main problem is the wait. You’ll have to wait for the comics to come out and then be printed together. Or you can buy the comics when they come out. Secondly is pricing . I know it might sound strange, but normally a trade paper and buying each comic individually is around the same price. It is crazy because comics appreciate value, but graphic novels depreciate. Lastly is the benefit. Instead of having multiple comics that could easily be lost, you have a neat little book with everything in it. But to me, that benefit doesn’t outway the other two.

Exception: Omnibus.

There is two significant difference between an omnibus and a trade paper. The price and the amount of content. An omnibus will give you the whole volume or every comic surrounding a specific comic event, so it makes sense that it’s normally between $75-150. But unlike a trade paper, an omnibus has so much content that it is worth the price. And unlike trade papers, they tend to hold their value. If you want to read a full volume or comic event this gives you the ability to do all of that while avoiding the comic book market. This is ideal if you want to read old comics or a very big comic book even.

And to be fair if you are wanting to read a full volume or event, this gives you everything without you having to search for each issue individually. Especially if you just want to read to know what happened. This is ideal for old and long comic book arcs.
Being this kind of collector is fun because you never know what story will surprise you. It also drives you to find more independently published labels.

Is this the kind of collector you are?

Don’t get me wrong, I do read my comics. Well, I read the comics that I buy to read. What you have to understand is that most collectors aren’t just one kind of collector, but a mixture of the first three. The only thing that some may not be mixed with is the last of the four.

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