How to Start a Comic Book Collection

How to start a comic book collection.

Starting a comic book collection is a great investment and a fun hobby. But with thousands of characters and a culture stretching back as far as the late 1800’s, it can be hard to know exactly where to start. Rest assured, comic books are fun to read, a great way to engage your imagination, and a good collection can be worth quite a bit of money over time.

So where to start? With the hundreds of comic book based movies that have been hitting movie theatres, it may be easiest to begin by picking a character that interests you. Whether you can relate to the back story or you think their super power is really cool, being interested in the character will keep you interested in the story. Most publishers have massive universes of thousands of characters – so keep your eyes open for the classics: Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman, Green Lantern, The Flash, etc. Maybe a team of characters is more your speed – check out: The X-Men, The Avengers, The Justice League, etc. Don’t worry too much if you’re jumping into a series on issue #80, most story arcs only last 5 or so books – so you’ll be able to catch up with the story rather quickly. For getting the most out of your favorite characters, try picking up some trade paper backs/trades (volumes of comic books in one bound book) at your local comic book store.

The next step to ensuring your continued interest in your collection is to find a local comic book store that you love. Here in Nashville Rick’s Comic City is a favorite not only for their expertise, but for how clean and organized their store is. Once you’ve been visiting a local shop, the employees may even recognize your taste in characters, writers, etc. and make recommendations for books you may want to add to your collection. Also, keep your eyes peeled for your local comic book store to run sales – it’s a great way to add a ton of books to your collection and save money in the process.

Equally important to building your collection is protecting your collection. Comic books are generally stored in acid free mylar bags (you can even get them resealable with acid free adhesive). This protects your books from fingerprinting, scuffs, and (with the addition of some acid free tissue paper) moisture. A backing board is stored inside the bag, against the back cover of the book, to add rigidity which prevents bending and curling when books are stored together. Finally, store your bagged and boarded collection upright in a short or long box (depending on how many books you have) – being sure to add foam inserts (or large trade paper backs, etc)in empty spaces to prevent your books from leaning too much in a forward or backward direction. Wear cotton or linen gloves when handling/reading your books, be sure not to curl or bend the pages, don’t open the book so far that the ink on the spine cracks and becomes white, and always store your books, bagged and boarded, when you’re not reading. Inspecting your books periodically is essential to their preservation. Treat them like you’re handling historical documents in an archive – because essentially, you are.

Above all else, remember to enjoy your new hobby. There’s a great sense of accomplishment that comes with finding a rare variant cover or a first print of your favorite issue. The more you learn about collecting and comic book culture, the more invested you will become in it.

Spring is Coming

Spring Cleaning IdeasThe weather is heating up, as we open our windows and air out our homes for the first time in months we begin to see the tale-tell signs of bunnies.  Not those adorable rabbits hopping around outside… no, we find the dust bunnies that have accumulated throughout the colder months. As you begin you take in the full extent of the surfaces in your home, which have been covered in the grey sheen, you may also stumble over the various pieces of junk that have crawled into your house sneakily disguised as useful items to be used one day. Then just as you begin to panic, wondering what you were thinking letting all these useless items pile up, you notice it, you thought it couldn’t happen to you, but the delusions of winter had deceived you! Your house is covered in drab. That’s right. It’s ok it happens to the best of us.

Those curtains, rugs, throws, bed spreads and even decorations that looked so perfect all winter long under the deceptions of poor lighting and the hallucinations brought on by the cold, suddenly catch the first rays of warm bright sunshine and now you see them for their true worth. You suddenly realize there is no way you are letting this go on a moment longer! It is time for an overhaul, a make-over, a reclaiming! It’s time to shed the delusions of winter and prepare for a bright and colorful spring!

It’s time for spring cleaning! While you’re deep cleaning every surface those winter dust bunnies dared to visit, why not pull out some boxes. Pack up that useless junk, the present your neighbor totally re-gifted to you, that work-out bench you swore to your family was a good idea, and that table that sits in the corner and is only used for storing junk mail. Pack up those drab accessories, the bright festive holiday, but oh so warm, throw blanket. You know, the one with the random scenery on it? Those dark and thick curtains that keep all the cold out but also block all hopes of sun rays, and let us not forget that dreary painting that has been hanging in your hall for years that you are tired of looking at. While you are at it, pack up those winter clothes, it’s time to show the weather it’s not your boss anymore. It’s spring and now and it’s time for you to wear those shorts and tank tops that you love so much. As you are taping that last box and the panic begins to set in that winter will return again in 6 months or so, remind yourself its ok. You can take those boxes down to StorPlace Self Storage and let us keep them safe from the dust bunnies while you enjoy the beauty of spring and summer.

The Origins of Valentine’s Day

Valentine's Day lessonAlthough Valentine’s Day has passed for this year, I came across a very interesting article that I wanted to summarize regarding this special holiday that we celebrate with our significant others.The article was taken from a commentary by Chuck Colson in 1999 from his daily radio show, “Breakpoint”. Chuck begins his commentary by speaking to the fact that Valentine’s Day is starting to lose some of its personal touches and he references electronic kisses that can be sent by email.

Today, couples celebrate Valentine’s Day in a variety of ways. We have seen this for ourselves as couples who are separated by miles can have a Skype date and kisses are now sent through FaceTime. But how did this holiday that celebrates romantic love get its start? Chuck says it was more than a Hallmark card.

There is a tale told that Roman Emperor, Claudius II, had martyred a Roman priest during his persecution of Christians. The priest was beaten with clubs and finally beheaded. His name was Valentine. He was sainted for refusing to deny Christ before the emperor and continuing to give aid to the Christians in Rome. The tale also tells us that Valentine would secretly marry couples against the commands of Emperor Claudius who believed that unmarried men made better soldiers. Reports say that Claudius also beheaded two other Christians named Valentine during his persecution and therefore we cannot be certain which Valentine it is that we celebrate on February 14th.

Now you might wonder why the church would have chosen February 14th to have a saint’s day. In ancient Rome, February 14 was the eve of a pagan festival called Lupercalia. During this festival, the Romans worshipped Februa, a goddess of marriage, childbirth, and sexuality. As Christianity spread, the church began replacing pagan festivals with holy days. The Roman festival had rather lewd practices, so the church replaced these practices with the tradition of honorable young men picking the names of saints—and then spend the following year emulating the saint whose name they drew.

As we see today, the focus of love and romance from the festival became popular, but the name to this day we choose to give is in honor of St. Valentine who gave his life for the love of his God.

StorPlace Self-Storage hopes you were able to enjoy a romantic day with your valentine this year. Feel free to drop by to help us eat our leftover candy and purchase any boxes or packing supplies you may need for your next move. You can also take a look at our new heated and cooled building next door and the covered parking spaces we have added. StorPlace Self Storage strives to make the storage experience easy and convenient for our customers. The StorPlace Self Storage Mission is to provide an excellent storage solution to our customers in need by incorporating Christian values of integrity, honesty, respect for each other, hard work, innovativeness, conscientiousness, cheerfulness, and friendliness.

StorPlace of Lebanon Pike has a number of heated and cooled spaces as well as outside, garage-type units for our customers. With a variety of sizes, StorPlace Self Storage can find the perfect fit for your storage needs.  Give us a call at (615) 882-0082 and we will be happy to assist you with any of your storage or packing needs.

Summer Storage

Summer and Storage go hand in handThe first week of March is full of very cold and inhospitable weather. The good thing is the cold will soon be long gone and be merely a memory very soon. Spring is on the way and before we know it summer will be out in full force. In Tennessee, we experience extremes in weather: very cold during the winter and very hot and humid during the summer. During the winter many people put life on hold and slow down a bit. Summer is a different story: people move, students go home for the summer and many people just get out and enjoy nature and the great weather. Renting a self-storage unit from StorPlace Self Storage can help with many of the activities that summer brings with it.

Below are a few examples of how renting a self storage unit during the summer months can help you and your family:

  • The summer months are the busiest time for moving and selling and buying homes. This is also the busiest time for the self storage industry. What do you do if you just bought a new house and are in the process of moving or you just sold your current home and need a place for your belongings during the transition?. A self-storage unit can be just what you need if you are waiting for your new house to be ready. Storage units can accommodate both short and long-term storage needs. Storage unit come in a variety of sizes from 5×5 to 10×30 for you store just a few of your belongings or the contents of an entire home. StorPlace Self Storage offers a wide range of units ranging from small to large but also standard units and heated & cooled units. Depending on the need, standard units are great for short-term storage or if you need a storage unit that you can pull right up to. Heated & cooled storage units are great for the long-term storage or if you have items that fare better in moderate temperatures.
  • Summer break is upon us, students are ready to return home. Students come from all over the country: some local while some travel from across the country. Students in school gather quite a bit of “stuff: including: fridges, microwaves, printers, televisions,clothes and even furniture. For students, a storage unit provides a safe and secure place to store their belongings while they are away from school for the summer months. Many students like to use smaller sized storage units such as a 5×5 or 5×10, which are great for your average student’s belongings.
  • With summer comes summer activities such as boating and camping. A storage facility such as StorPlace Self Storage is an excellent place to store your summer “toys”. Many people rent storage units to house jet skis and boats. Others like the convenience of parking or a covered parking space for larger boats and campers. People like having a place where they can park large recreational vehicles safely and securely. With 16 great locations in middle Tennessee and Bowling Green, Kentucky, there is always a StorPlace Self Storage nearby.

During the winter people tend to slow down a bit, but during the summer months people tend to go all out. Some people move homes, some are students going home for the summer, and many others just get out and enjoy summer. A self-storage unit or parking space like those offered by StorPlace Self Storage are great for whatever short or long-term storage needs you may have.