Friday, 4 August 2017

The decimation of my pull list

It's been a while since I've written here (a little over a month) and this wasn't an intentional absence, but more a case of being WAY too busy in real life.

However, I've got some time now and I figured I'd write about something, although the topic which is holding pride of place in my mind right now is not what I really wanted to end a break with. That said, this topic IS on my mind and I kinda wanted to write it down so that I'm clear in both my thought process and intentions.

So, let me begin.

Basically, it's come to my attention recently that my comics budget, despite it's rather small size and/or value, is now too much of an extravagance. This is down to a number of things which have affected how I spend my hard earned. Amongst them are that real life costs have risen (as bills tend to do for us all) and I've recently had to spend a large amount of savings money on a new car to better accommodate my ever growing family. Then there are comic books themselves which, while not exactly a very recent thing, have also seen their prices increase as a result of both publisher discretion and exchange rate fluctuations between the States and the UK, mainly as a result of Brexit.

Anyway, all of these things have had a negative effect on my month payslip as more an more of it has to pay the important stuff. Therefore, despite my best attempt to weather that particular storm, it looks like the time has come to make a really tough decision and pretty much end my pull list. This is not an easy decision, as the withdrawal symptoms are going to be murder, but it is one which has to be made in order to stay solvent.

Of course, while it might be somewhat counter-productive, I can't find it in myself to go 'cold-turkey' on all my comics as of right now and so have put together a rudimentary plan in order to 'ease' myself (for want of a better description) out of new comics.
  • Firstly, the Small Press Comics (Chunks, Afterlife Inc and Cognition and beyond), due to their more haphazard release schedule, will be cut immediately and their future instalments will be considered on an as and when basis (should funds be available). I feel bad for this as these books are created by talented people and deserve the same respect as any mainstream comic/ However, while they aren't as regular in their release, I may find it easier to pick their future issues in the future, considering them as 'one-offs'.
  • Comixology bought trades and single issues (consisting of Huck and Autumnlands, Titans and Black Science) will also be cut immediately with their titles re-installed later should my budget recover. The reason for this is that, due to all these book being digital, I can easily catch up with little difficulty in locating those missing issues. Therefore, dropping them first is a quick money saver, if not slightly annoying as they are great series (Black Science especially).
  • Printed comic mini series Star Trek: The Next Generation: Mirror Broken and Lazarus X+66 will be kept on until they complete, unless their quality dips. The reason for this is that, as they are only six issues a piece, they should be completed by November/December at the latest. Therefore, it seems silly to miss out on issues for so small a run and if I struggle to afford issues, my LCS can hold them for an additional month without me falling too far behind.
  • Printed comic ongoings Daredevil and Black Magick will continue to be picked up until the ends of the arcs ending in October/November time. This is for two reasons. 1. I don't want to screw over my LCS seeing as October solicits are out and they will no doubt have ordered. And 2. Both have been great series so far and, given they are picked up in print, I want to give them time to either drop the ball or my finances to pick up to accommodate. That said, should neither happen, the hard choice will have to be implemented.
  • Printed comic ongoing Lazarus will continue unaffected. This is because this is my most enjoyable series which is picked up in print and, given it's long term storytelling, I don't want to risk missing issues which I struggle to find in the future should I be able to come back. Of course, if it comes to the point that I can no longer afford a single comic book every month then this series will also have to go (and I'll probably have to seek medical help).
So, there it is! My plan towards the decimation of my pull list. I'll be honest, I'm not entirely happy with the fact I've had to do this as I was at a point where every book on my list was fantastic. However, sometimes (and I stress 'sometimes') comics are not the be all and end all and this, sadly, is one of those times.

Of course, I'm not counting myself out of the race yet as I do have quite a number of old series and back issues which I will happily re-read. Also, during the course of this mass re-read, I may find that some of these comics do not appeal to me as they once did when I had first bought them. In that case, a simply case of selling on ebay (or equivalent selling platform) can mean a temporary boost of comic buying funds.

But that's not going to be immediate so, for now, I'll be focusing on all those great comics for review, the plethora of back issues under my desk and the careful planning of rebuilding my pull list back to it's former self.

Or, hopefully, something bigger!!

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