Sunday, May 24, 2009

Loose Comics

Changing a Habit

Back in April my local comic shop burned down.

OK, not quite.

There was a fire in the shop's plaza, and the store suffered some damage. The damage was severe enough for the owners of the strip to decide to tear down a part of the mall, which included my comic shop. Because of the fire, the comic shop's account with Diamond, the comics distributor, was put on hold, effectively putting my monthly comic reading on hold too.

Last week I learned my comic shop had resolved its insurance claim and had signed off on a new location, which will not open until July. (All of this, I know, is extremely interesting to you.) But because the store's account with Diamond is on hold, it's unlikely I'll see any of the single issues that shipped between April and the new store's opening date.

At first I thought I'd need to search and get those comics I missed. I did and calculated the cost, realizing: a) it would be expensive (my paycheque is hardly thick) and b) there are few comics I have missed to justify that cost. What does this mean? Have I grown out of comics?

To answer the second question: no. 

The answer to the first: I feel I've fallen into that problem of habitual purchases, like what Warren Ellis described in his final "Come in Alone" column back in 2000. If all I'm doing is blindly reading the comic, what's the point? That's not to say all comics I read on a monthly basis are just habitual purchases that never entertain me. But my comic shop burning down gave me the chance to take a break from monthlies and realize there are some I followed for no reason. Not to mention, but I will, that I prefer comics in book format more than their original loose version.

There are some comics that need to be read immediately but the majority can wait. I know because I have a good few by my side that I haven't got to and they're hardly calling out to be read right now. No point buying something only for it to collect dust. 

The end. (That's how you end a blog post, right? It's been a while.)

--Czobit

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