How many of you have walked into a comic book shop, searched eBay or Comics Price Guide, and bought a comic that you didn’t know you wanted? You were visually drawn to a book or the story sounded interesting or the cover was amazing and you bought it. I’m sure we’ve all done that at times. If that’s your normal way of buying comics I can tell you something about your collection. Your collection doesn’t have a direction or a clear goal.
Setting a collection goal and sticking to your plan is tough. We all want that mega sweet Artgerm cover or that epic Kirby cover? You stroll into a comic shop with determination but the smell of old comics and the lure of beautiful art is too much. Everything you buy or avoid buying should be filtered through a lens, does that book help you meet your goal?
Setting a Goal
Think about what makes you happy with your collection. Are there some books that make you smile or is there a character that you relate to? What art or story or cover or character or homage is your favorite? Think about it for a minute.
Let’s suppose you have a favorite artist like Nick Cardy. Go to the creator’s page. https://comicspriceguide.com/creators
Now type in “Cardy” and you’ll see that there are currently 52 titles that have his work. Of those titles, there are hundreds and hundreds of individual issues, like all 56 issues of Aquaman. You can do that with any creator in our database. So if collecting an artist or writer is your goal, it’s easy to track.
Maybe your goal is about collecting all issues in a title or buying a mega key issue like Hulk 181. Dropping a couple thousand dollars on a single issue can be difficult financially but it isn’t impossible. If your disposable income is short but your comic supply is great. Sell your extras on Comics Price Guide. Gold members can sell for free. You might not be able to buy Hulk 181 right now but selling all those extra issues can add up. If that’s really your goal then some of you might have to sell books you like to get a book you love.
Potential Goal Ideas
If you are you struggling with a good goal for your collection? Here are some fun ideas.
Collect all the homage covers of your favorite book (Action Comics 1, ASM 300)
Create a top 10 most wanted list
Collect all the covers with a certain character on them.
Collect all the issues of a title.
If the title is too long or expensive, collect all the issues since you’ve been alive
Collect all the issues that came out the month you were born
Collect all the appearances of a character
Collect all the first appearances
Collect books with a certain pose on the cover
Collect a genre of books like pre-code horror or manga
Collect a set of covers that tie together like DC’s Movie Poster Comics or Marvel’s Skrull Variant Covers
The possibilities are endless.
Track your Progress
If you’re a bodybuilder you probably have an app or two to keep track of exercises, supplements, eating and sleeping habits, and goals. The same should be true for comic book collectors who have a goal in mind. You should be able to instantly pull out your phone and see your want list. We obviously want you to use our free app but you might need a financial app too. Some collectors have money taken out of their accounts each week to painlessly save up for a big purchase. Personally, I use Acorns because the money is invested but it will take a few days to get it out. (Full Disclosure this is an Affiliate Link that gives me $5 and you $5) https://www.acorns.invite/2P9ZW7 Ally has a savings app that would allow you to get access quicker than invested money but won’t earn as much. The important thing is to save toward your goal.
Don’t work hard toward your goal, reach it, and then look for another goal. Take a second to remember how you did it, the work it took, or the sacrifice you made. Tell fellow collectors about it. Let us enjoy your victory as well. We should all be working toward a goal so it gives us hope when you tell your story.
Please share your goals or accomplished goals in the comments below.
By Ron Cloer
Some of my Goals
- Collect all the Batman comics from 150 to 713 (missing 25 issues)
- Collect all Amazing Spider-man comics (series 1)
- Collect any comic with the Statue of Liberty on it.
- Collect the books on my Top 10 most wanted list
You stroll into a comic shop with determination but the smell of old comics and the lure of beautiful art is too much.
12 Replies to “Comic Book Collecting Goals”
So I’ve set an impossible goal for myself, one that I will never complete. It’s to own a copy of every comic book published by all companies. This includes variants of each and every kind out there. So I know that no matter where I am, if they sell comic books there’s bound to be one I don’t have in my collection. But I also set smaller goals to keep myself focused. Right now on the Marvel side, I am trying to complete runs of Conan the Barbarian and the Incredible Hulk, DC has me chasing the last few issues of Joker, Swamp Thing, and Jonah Hex. And for publishers outside of the big two, I am attempting to finish my collection of Crossgen books. Other than that, I always keep an eye out for first appearances I haven’t acquired, with the main one being Werewolf by Night #32.
Some of the titles you’re working on are some of my favorites, Swamp Thing, Incredible Hulk and Conan. Big Goal!
Some of my Goals
Collect all the Batman comics (missing issues 1-9)
Collect all (or most) of Detective comics (series 1 – between 29 and 85 I’m missing 29)
That’s two very seriously difficult goals! You’ve made great progress though, keep it up.
So a few months, like 10 months ago, I went into my drug dealers store….errrr……comic suppliers store and he had 3 copies of a book that has dawged me since I started comic book collecting 46 years ago. There they were, in their majestic appearances, bright yellow, with Frank Castle looking thru his BULLS EYE, right in the chest of the Amazing Spiderman! Stunning copies, all three, ranging from a 7.5 to a 9.6! I had to step away from the counter so not to get drool on these beauties! Yep, you guessed it, The AMAZING SPIDERMAN #129! That book has dawged me for 46 years, and I couldn’t get any of those cause he was having them graded before he sold them. I told him I wanted the sweet 9ish book when they came back. It came back as a 9.4 and I couldn’t buy it cause I was preparing to retire. So now that is all behind me, I WILL get the sweetest one I come across from this moment on. I guarantee it! p.s. Great post here Ron and thanks for the fun!
Richard, I had the chance to buy a gorgeous raw Amazing Spider-man 129 for 1k. I couldn’t bring myself to buy it but have regretted it since. I get it man.
What grade was that A.S. 129 you passed on Ron? Also one thousand might have been too high at the time so how could you know? We all have regrets. I traded a hundred thousand dollars in today’s value worth of books over the years away for crap in the mid eighties.
Unfortunately, it was around a 9.4 and had gorgeous coloring. I only say “unfortunately” because I didn’t buy it. It was a great deal but I just couldn’t justify spending the money. I had already spent three thousand dollars buying his comics so it wasn’t a complete loss.
Tower comics. I remember reading the issues as a kid. When I started collecting I would always ask for Thunder Agents at ever shop I was in. They either had never heard of them or had one or two beat-up copies. On the rare occasion they had a decent issue, I would buy it, even if I had to put back other choices. This was before the internet and E-bay. It took 25 years of searching, writing letters, and luck to put that set together. It was an accomplishment. I found out along the way there was also a Dynamo, No-Man, Fight the Enemy and Undersea Agents series. Got those. Then I discovered there was three Tippy Teen titles, Tippy Teen, Go-go and Animal and Teen-in. These comics have the Beatles and Monkees pin-ups and were wrote to be “cool” and “hip” back in the sixties. Currently I am missing Tippy Teen #12 and #13. I could buy them today on E-bay, but I wait for a decent book at a decent price. Through the years I found there is no reason to buy a “good” book. If it’s not Fine or better it’s not worth collecting. I actually miss the pre-internet days. There was a certain anticipation to walking into a shop, in a strange town, hoping that they may have the missing issue. Looking through the boxes, finding other interesting things. I miss the hunt.
I’m trying to buy as many Matt Baker books I can get my hands on. His artwork was great and beyond its time for the 40s-50s. Too bad he never got the chance to work for Timely or DC. Can you imagine if they gave him the opportunity to draw Catwoman or Black Canary? Check out The Saint # 4, Phantom Lady #16, All-Top #16, Seven Seas #5 & #6, Cinderella Love #29, Teen-Age Romances #14 & #32, Diary Secrets #16, Pictorial Romances #7, Teen-Age Temptations #7, etc. You can see where Dave Stevens got his influence from. I’ve got over 30 Bakers to date and they’re not getting any cheaper.
I’ve got a few goals, they’ve developed over time. It started as completing my childerhood dream of owning all of The Amazing Spider-Man issues up to issue #100. Very quickly that goal shifted to owning all the Marvel Silver Age comics, and all Amazing Spider-Man issues to #365. I completed the Spider-Man goal and have almost completed owning a copy of every Marvel Silver Age comic. Along the way I’ve become enthralled with the Golden Age comics. I love the early superhero covers, particularly the war covers. So now I’m trying to get a copy of every Golden Age DC and Timely superhero comic, though I suspect that goal will shift along the way.
Collect all the issues that came out the month you were born.
I am actually doing that now, I have 3 so far. I am trying to get them all at 8.0 or above and I will get the pressed and graded for my born on this date display, and I am trying to find bargains since these are all 53 years old. Should have started sooner LOL.
I have ASM 47, Avengers 39, and FF 61 so far. All April 1967 on cover. I also want to show them to my Dad, and chastise him for not buying a 12 cent comic when he had the chance.
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