Thursday, 12 January 2012

It's not easy budgeting for comics

Every day now, I seem to be trying to work out how to buy more comics with the same budget I set myself. Now, like most people, I am not paid large sums of money for doing little (quite the opposite in fact) and with what I do recieve monthly I have to pay bills, buy food and spare some change to take my girlfriend out ever now and again.
Because of this I set myself, every month, the relatively modest sum of £30 (that's about $46) to fund my comic habit. Now, you'd think "Oh, well that's more than enough money to get plenty of comics. They only come out once a month." and I would agree with that except for the fact that there is WAY too much out there.
At the present moment, I pick up about 13 titles a month. These include ten ongoing series (one of which will soon be cancelled) and three limited series (all of which end by March). Therefore, once all those that end do end, I'll be down to 9 titles. This should be a joyous moment, except for the fact that four of the titles are priced at $3.99. What makes it more difficult for me is that I buy my books from a store that is not local and therefore I have to bump up the price with a delivery fee every two weeks. Also, I was recently told that Marvel want to get out 15 issues of each comic a year instead of the normal 12. Because of this, and because I have 5 Marvel titles in my pull list, I have to pick up 15 additional comic books a year.
So, after all this, once the numbers have been crunched and the all series' releases have been taken into account, all that is left is enough to purchase one ongoing series monthly and (maybe) one 5-issue limited series. The question then becomes, what do I get?
As this is only January, I can't even imagine what will start later in the year, but already there are so many titles I seriously want. DC's new 52 has at least two I'm eyeing up in Animal Man and Suicide Squad, but this then means tracking down all issues from issue 1 and thats more money gone. Same can be said with Wolverine and the X-Men at Marvel, with the added wrinkle that I'd have to get 15 issues a year (so the limited would be a no for the year). The option would, therefore be get something yet to start. Sadly, only two spring to mind. Image's The Activity is only one issue out so far making it less costly and the preview pages I saw of it were breathtaking. The second is the rumoured upcoming Justice Society of America from DC by James Robinson. DC have missed out a large number of great characters in the relaunch and after watching the JSA related Smallville episode I have to admit I'm more than tempted.
What I do know is what limited series I'm getting and, honestly, I'm holding out for a second Who is Jake Ellis? series, although, knowing my luck, it will most likely be released as an ongoing.
At the end of the day, what would help me out is for comics to become cheaper. Actually, if I wanna wish for things, it's wishing for the salary that pays for my comics to get bigger.

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