A few years ago, I was still a pretty casual comic book reader. I’d pop into my local comic book store every once in a blue moon, or I’d buy a trade paper back, but I wasn’t keeping up with any titles regularly. Then DC’s New 52 happened, and I decided I wanted to try reading stuff on a monthly basis. And hey, while I was trying out some of the New 52, why not jump back into Ultimate X-Men? It was the first comic I really read, back when volume 1 was ongoing, and it seemed like a good point to jump into Marvel again too.
That is, until I got to my comic book shop the Wednesday it was released, and found that it had sold out. There were no copies on the shelves.
They offered to hold a copy for me, and asked me if I wanted to start a reserve bag. And that’s where everything went downhill.
My name is Angel and I’m a comic book addict.
Three titles on my list turned into seven, then ten when I realized I’d get a discount for having ten titles in my bag a month. I added another, and another until no person without unlimited free time would be able to read all of these titles. At this point, my pile of to-read comics is nearing 100 strong, and yet I still haven’t stopped buying. Because what if I finally catch up with the New 52’s Catwoman and I love it? Then I’d regret taking it off of my list.
But as my pile of comics continues to grow by the month, it makes me wonder whether some people I know, who have been making the switch to digital only subscriptions have got the right idea. Thanks to sites like Comixology, it’s becoming easier and easier to keep up with titles without even having to go to a comic book store.
But here comes the dilemma. Those of us who are comic readers more so than collectors– I’m somewhere in the middle– might think this is super convenient, but is it actually hurting local comic book stores? That fear is part of the reason I’ve resisted going digital-only (that and I’ve recently gotten into collecting variant covers and getting my favorite artists to sign my favorite issues). I love my local comic book store. I’ve been going there on and off for about ten years now (only regularly in the past two years or so) and I’d hate to contribute to any business they might be losing.
So while I’ve got this unwieldy stack of comics that just keeps growing, it makes me hesitant to stop pulling titles, because honestly, without a reserve bag, I’m afraid I wouldn’t make it to the comic book store but once every few months. And I do love the convenience of having my LCS keep a list for me and not only keep track of what I’m reading, but periodically pull titles similar to what I’m already reading.
But holy crap, you guys, the stack just keeps growing.
What do you guys think? Where do you stand on this? Are you pro or anti-digital? Please tell me I’m not the only one with an out of control pull list.