WHERE DO I BEGIN?

I observed a guy walking around, looking lost at the comic shop yesterday.  My first guess was that he was a newbie.  A few minutes later I learned that he had not visited a comic shop in years.  He wanted to get back into reading comic books, but didn’t know where to start.  This guy was trying to decide whether to read a new title or pick a familiar one and wait for a point to jump in.  I know that feeling all too well because I was in his shoes a little over a year ago.

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Reading is easy.  Deciding WHAT to read is not.  A few things to consider to if you are a new reader of comic books or coming off a hiatus.

  1. Genre – Do you like crime, horror, mythology, romance, superhero?  What about kid friendly?
  2. Single issues vs trade paperbacks – Single issues are released monthly and bi-monthly.  A trade paperback (tpb or trade) is a collection of stories usually containing one story arc.  Some, like myself, like to have both on hand to keep the singles from being handled too much.  I can’t stand smudges, bends, creases and dents.
  3. Resources – If you have family or friends that read comics, get recommendations from them.  Visit your local comic shop, they’ll be glad to give you a rundown of hot sellers.  Social media is a great source to keep you up-to-date on current events in the comic industry.

The list is almost endless.  I like to visit my comic shop and rummage through back issues because I occasionally come across a character, while reading my current titles, whose history I want to learn about.  Back issues are also nicely discounted, depending on the retailer.

If you live far from a comic shop, try to order from an online shop or go digital.  Or hop in the car and take that drive to the nearest store.  You’ll get personal attention and a chance to network.  Popular and anticipated top-selling titles go fast.  So you may want to consider pre-ordering your comics online or have your local comic shop pull the book(s) for you.  Good luck and have fun!

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