CGC Journals

Our community journals

  1. Just picked this one up now on eBay. One of the better covers by Neal Adams on this title. And a great orange background too, which I mentioned in my last journal when describing Action Comics 367. Enjoy.

    s-l500.jpg

  2. Just finished prepping and packing up my first submission for 2023.

    ABE03495-C0E1-4136-9EFB-DA90F620A9CA.thumb.jpeg.b929a702256c5baaec6cf18cd4b58334.jpeg

    These books will go to CCS first.

    1A3C77DB-276D-45D5-BC14-0307EEDB7A1E.thumb.jpeg.7df960b3e98503fbc0da968a216985f6.jpeg

    Spoiler

    98DB3A03-F5A5-450C-ADB0-A15E26C5CE18.thumb.jpeg.530d46263d914ba8bab335dc569d329c.jpeg

    36C9739A-C8CC-48F0-9DA5-8F2ACB6D5ED7.thumb.jpeg.46adef5a7e72543ed09063bdf1963e4c.jpeg

    09E3C7C3-82F2-4B96-A4E1-7ECBC46B0068.thumb.jpeg.6c0f17d983a97d7c737b277af8b88cac.jpeg

    9AE87988-DDE2-4BA9-91A6-0FBB923CCA11.thumb.jpeg.8a47900bc7c95c4d8bd17e2f896f6d05.jpeg

    37D38338-3328-4D64-82DB-BBD3A5BF4786.thumb.jpeg.e7ea094b4c3daa2a8831b76e93f707d5.jpeg

    Spoiler

    970BC385-9CA7-4279-BD05-86FDBB45BF62.thumb.jpeg.e1a1ca4906ef3b6830a08e7cd8ff8855.jpeg

    586D570D-AE1A-402D-8E2D-08CC48F95868.thumb.jpeg.62d17368a8e86280c8c8879289cd5cf5.jpeg

    A7111BF7-62DB-491D-A3A8-6BCD4CEC3CEA.thumb.jpeg.d065ea5da5af7a5fcf1ee8f609eb2b3a.jpeg

    F325D511-1F36-4B42-8CA2-067CCB7CB917.thumb.jpeg.1bedb71b6f106d7a06c786325cf0c414.jpeg

    326A7B96-A77F-4770-B625-982DB3FC8798.thumb.jpeg.ffdca2c2831b4d37125b11ab7872744d.jpeg

    58D3C274-5541-4878-83AB-D88E17150E53.thumb.jpeg.24a80106a79eaf6761b98a3ea3a4853e.jpeg

    Spoiler

    CE96540B-AE64-4B07-A86E-C1A748235A14.thumb.jpeg.8af57233a14488f1eb1ddc9ad587c0b4.jpeg

    2AE5EBBB-A941-4564-96DB-26917D3BB691.thumb.jpeg.c0e5829a20bbc3f0d7738983606f1ef1.jpeg

    09693BFF-61A4-4C6A-AAAB-0AD9EBAC1439.thumb.jpeg.e9f0a1ee9ccb8721e4379d7be81efaa7.jpeg

    Spoiler

    32D94B6C-B4CC-4C6F-9E38-FA336A7E02B6.thumb.jpeg.3c96596e65b752533b3ee19b4b6ca4d9.jpeg

    9B4210EF-E85B-4727-B3B9-74F081DDC043.thumb.jpeg.792363b63ef78ba06e656d6fc8518519.jpeg

    3D597879-17FA-4444-882E-E1E2DBDB862D.thumb.jpeg.2140d86446b053292c972cf4d2357a09.jpeg

    69CB1F48-A2EE-4290-B1D8-A2753A722932.thumb.jpeg.1b4e4c81f42b5cee09a317f6ce9791d2.jpeg

    Fingers crossed 

    sig.jpg

  3. Submitted to a facilitator almost a year ago. They didn't get signed at the advertised time. Took a few months for the facilitator to let me know. Finally signed & returned. Happy with the results at least. The pink really pops.

    PXL_20230119_153519374.jpg

    PXL_20230119_153608033.jpg

  4. Gen 03 Confirmed 07-2019

    Post on 07-03-19 CGC Message Board with new sticker https://boards.cgccomics.com/topic/444527-walmart-marvel-comics-variants/page/4/#comments

    8 Different titles

    image.png.5e0abbd9c3d760f9ee911f9e6c924f69.png

     

    2x Tony Stark: Iron Man #12 08/19

    image.png.d04de40476075a794544490d79e5ed9a.png

     

    2x Fantastic Four Vol 2018 #10 07/19

    image.png.beb3010ed0e313cb94a1946e12b7ef4e.png

     

    3x Symbiote Spider-man Vol 2019 #1 07/29

    image.png.24f91444089c94aa7b26fe96247a2d75.png

     

    3x Black Cat Vol 2019 #1 08/2019

    image.png.f5d1e6998a91e3c7be8e61d97c577734.png

     

    1x Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge #1

    May not be a walmart exclusive cover no differences between this and regular cover.  https://wdwnt.com/2019/05/photos-star-wars-galaxys-edge-1-comic-book-debuts-at-shops-around-walt-disney-world/

    image.png.e954a56e7c58e0976d47732cc0e5dce9.png

     

    2x Thanos #1

    image.png.297306b8688adfd7160df46567162737.png

     

    2x Guardians of the Galaxy Annual #1

    image.png.41aa2deca55ac45ffe7bd9965a48048c.png

     

    2x Incredible Hulk #1

    image.png.bb49c5991a82c413d59f593a46ea1ff5.png

     

     

     

  5. This is second time that I got some books signed by artist Amanda Conner.  Books are from the Powergirl series that started in 2009 and lasted 27 issues.  

     

  6. I'm going to take an opportunity about once a week to post a book from my personal collection.

    I'll try to share the when, where, and why each book was chosen.
    (this all depends on if I can remember or not...)

    My ever-evolving personal collection consists of 49 CGC slabs (38 Signature Series / 11 Universal) and 1 raw book.
    Once CGC grades treasury sized books it'll be a solid 50 CGC'd.

    Why 50?
    It is the number of books that easily fits into two short boxes.
    Just enough to grab in case of an emergency or not take up too much room in the car.

    Why ever-evolving?
    I read a post many moons ago on these boards about ensuring that the handling of your collection was easy on your family when you pass away.
    In it, someone mentioned selling 10% of your books per year once turning 40-years-old.
    They also stressed to continuously refine your books down to a Top 10 that would be easy for your family to liquidate upon death.

    Over the past 5 years I have reduced my collection from 34 short boxes down to 16 boxes through donation, selling, and recycling efforts.
    8 short boxes of raw comics to be graded
    6 short boxes of CGC'd comics to be sold via eBay
    2 short boxes of personal collection

    As books are sold throughout the year money gets set aside to reinvest into / 'improve' the personal collection.
    If a new book is purchased with the intent to add it to the personal collection (aka not a 'flip') then a book has to be taken out 'to make space'.

    To provide a clearer understanding, in 2022 I removed the following comics from my personal collection to allow new books to join:
    All-Star Superman #1 German Edition 9.6 signed by Grant Morrison and Frank Quitely 
    Avengers #4 1.0

    That is all to say that at some point some of the books featured in this thread will not make the cut going in to the next year.
    (I will edit posts when a book has transitioned out of the collection)

  7. I'm nervous and excited to announce that my new comic The Crimebusters #5 is coming to Kickstarter on January 30!

    Excited because this one is the culmination of all the subplots I've been dropping hints for through the first four issue. This is where the bigger, over-arching mystery starts coming together.

    Nervous because this is the first issue of The Crimebusters that I haven't drawn myself. New artist Mac Radwanski did the art, and I think he's a lot better than I am! :grin: But that means there are a lot more costs associated with this issue than with the previous issues, so I'm pretty nervous that I'm going to lose some money this time around. 

    I also am excited, though, for the Trixie's Mysteries variant co ver by guest artist Lenm, because this is probably my favorite yet!

    You can check out the pre-launch page now and click on the "Notify me on launch" button to make sure you don't miss any of the limited edition variant covers. 

    Here's a look art the regular cover by Mac, the Trixie's Mysteries variant by Lenm, and the Boy Comics variant by yours truly, which is an homage to Gil Kane's cover for Rex the Wonder Dog #11:

     

    1985470945_5-finishedcoversmall.jpg.2e08b3889b7d3f277c8b662d3d60bf5b.jpg

    1379607699_TrixieCover5-small.jpg.46ef76e339ff75238d66a7cc5c1975de.jpg

    864281282_5-BoyComicscover-small.jpg.d70f3ee8e83ebe0fa90ba7f27806eecb.jpg

     

  8.  

    I’m looking for some help in finding Fantastic Four 1/2 Wizard Publication.

    There are two versions:

    The regular edition — which is easily found on eBay. I’m positing a photo of my copy signed by Stan Lee..

    Then there is the Wizard Authentic version. According to the Society there is a Wizard Seal on the cover.

    ‘Personally in fifteen plus years of collecting (This Time) I’ve never seen one!

    Any help in finding one would be greatly appreciated.

     

     

    46E00C4D-6A87-464F-AD74-136ADF751A92.jpeg

  9. I am a rather devoted Neal Adams collector, but I have a fondness for Peanuts books as well. My earliest recollection is from when I started to get back into comic books in 1994. I was at a convention in Detroit, the first one I had ever attended. And there, I found a dealer selling a raw copy of this issue. I instantly had to have it and it started my journey back into comic books. I later went on to have it graded and it came back a CGC 9.4. When I sold my first collection, I sold it as well. Sadly, very sadly. Now that I am back into collecting for the umpteenth time, I realize I need to have this book back in my life. While I would love to have my 9.4 back, if I am going to dream and dream big: full on drool then why not go for the 9.6.

    Absolutely the #1 Peanuts cover of all time. 

    Peanuts 4 CGC 9.6 - on HA.jpg

  10. I recently added a Thor 274 Multi-pack edition to my set. It's a nice 9.4 Universal. I noticed that I received 18 points for adding it. However, if it was just a Univeral copy I would have received 20 points for adding it. I looked at the different scores for issue 274, Universal and Multipack Universal. Some same grades had the identical point scores, but some did not.  It was really haphazard.  Does anyone know why some grades would get the same point total and others different for the same grade? Just wondering. I've got it and a Thor 228 Savannah shown that just got back from CGC.

    Thor 228 274.JPG

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    shadroch
    Latest Entry

    I suppose I should start at the beginning. The summer of 1973.

    I'd read comics before but by 1972/73 I was pretty over them. I was a freshman in high school. Football and cheer-leaders dominated my life.  That summer I went to stay at my grandmothers summer place and was bored silly.  For some reason, most of the kids I knew from past summers weren't around, and my Aunt didn't want me wandering too far as she was in charge. There was a kid a few years younger than me who lived across the street and had a huge collection of comics. He must have had at least 50, maybe 100, all in plastic bags. With nothing else to do, I got friendly with him and in about two weeks had read all his comics.  I got my uncle to drive me into town and the store there had comics.  My $3.00 allowance would have let me buy 15 comics but when my uncle saw the stack , he said 5, no more. I'd never even heard of the Defenders but here they are in a war with the Avengers.  The kid didn't collect reprints so I bought Marvel Tales and Marvels Greatest Comics without realizing they weren't new. I didn't care for the art in those books at all. 

    I liked the stories in the reprints but liked the art in the newer books better.  By the time the summer was over, I was buying ten new comics every week and had started buying food storage bags to store them in. I mostly bought Marvel, but a few DC and even a Charlton or two. I realized very quickly I liked the Super-Hero stuff more than the horror and romance. 

    One day while bike riding, I came across an old junk shop with a trunk full of old comics. Captain Marvel, The Fly, Worlds Finest from the 50s, ect. I was in heaven until I asked the prices. The guy was asking $3 for a comic with a ten cent price tag.  Then he showed me a bunch of coverless ones for  a quarter each. I figured the guy was playing me. Why would I pay a quarter for a coverless old Avengers book when a new comic was only twenty cents.  I tell Terry( the kid) about the place and he wants to go. My Uncle takes us there( it was the next town over) and Terry starts buying all these old coverless books. I didn't get it, but on the way back he shows me a Spiderman 5 and tells me if it had the cover, it would sell for maybe $3.  He said he had gone to a convention and some comics sold for more than $25.

      Another door had opened.

  11. AT Duran

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    OK so on July 12th I sent a Card to CGC and SGC Both locations are in Florida. CGC order was with a elite membership express service level with sub grades and Turnaround times of 7 days for express and an additional 5 days for sub grades. SGC was a basic account basic service 30 day Turn around. Broken down this is how it stacks up to one another.

    CGC Express with Sub Grades On Elite member account. CGC bill- $98.50

    Plus the Additional $32.50 paid for Shipping with $3000 insurance through USPS from me to CGC 

    1. Grading (1) - 51.00
    2. Handling   -  5.00
    3. Sub-Grades- 8.50
    4. USPS Ship- 34.00

    So in total for the 1 card with express level sub graded $131.30

    $98.50-CGC

    with advertised turn around of 7 days + 5 days (12 Business Days)

    Currently I shipped 7/12/21 USPS delivered 7/16/21

    nothing else as of now 

     

    Ok So now onto SGC there thing is No backlog, No Bloated Turnarounds, No Games just accurate grades in a timely manner. starting at just $30 a card. now I picked this company for a reason they have been around for awhile they are a very reputable company and a similar grading style to CGC.

    SGC standard Service $30 Standard account with return Shipping $15 SGC Bill - $45

    Plus the $7.49 paid for Shipping with $500 insurance through USPS from me to SGC

    1. SGC 30 day service - $30
    2. Shipping fee - $15

    So in total for the 1 card standard level $52.49

    $45-SGC

    with advertised turnaround time of 30 days (business days)

    Currently I Shipped 7/12/21 USPS Delivered 7/15/21

    On 7/16/21 SGC sent email letting me know that they have received my card and appreciate my business

     

    And although the card values are different this is just a side by side to better understand things automated emails when cards are received the fact that a population report should have been released instead of opening sports cards and games soon in stead work on the things that need to be worked on. some may see CGC is gonna be the Pokémon standard. well it is starting to look like opening more types of service is more important. This is just a comparison of how company's receive cards and how long it takes to process it all. Fix what matters, focus at the task at hand before tackling a new one. 

     

  12. Hello :)

    I'm not going to post a big explanatory preamble this time, but just note that in this journal I will be looking to see if I can find any pre-1960 dated comics which could reasonably be referred to as 'UK Price Variants'. As we now know, a UK Price Variant is a book made for distribution in the UK, with a single printed UK cover price, but which was printed in the US as a junior subset of the same original print run as the primary cents priced version. We know from my research that UKPVs were produced post 1960 for seven US publishers, but I wanted to see if I could find any books prior to that date, either from the US or another country.

    I have a number of books to post about, so let's get started.

    I recently picked up this copy of 'Skunky Shopkeeper', undated, which carries a stickered one shilling price and an indicia which notes that the book was printed in Canada and distributed in the UK by 'Streamlined Books' (a possible misprint of the 'Streamline' of 'Pictorial Romance' fame?):

    248737199_Skunky(CenturyPublications)Undated1ShillingSticker.thumb.jpg.b557d94efa1bdfdbb972927d15917de1.jpg

    I then picked up a second corner-nibbled copy, also with a sticker, and painstakingly removed it to reveal this apparently overprinted 6d price:

    499856460_Skunky(CenturyPublications)Undated6d.thumb.jpg.e136201c3dc326ebdff59aaa9655ed70.jpg

    Here are the two prices, side by side:

    973217549_SkunkyCrop1.jpg.4731475df2eec9c91c31a260f53562dc.jpg 2049922793_SkunkyCrop2.jpg.4875089caa6bae005e8bf1d214a18579.jpg

    So my first thought was 'could this be a UKPV of an original Canadian book?'

    I know very little about Gold and pre-1960s books. I'm sure there are people I could ask, but where's the fun in that? It's something to do, to potter on, explore and learn for yourself. 

    That said, the GCD helpfully tells me that my Canadian Skunky reprints the US comic 'Funland Comics #1'

    1994487432_SkunkyGCDInformation.thumb.PNG.07bef4bd1794b7d49dc4de56c7e20dd9.PNG

    So I grab myself a copy of that book, also corner-nibbled:

    1572213570_FunlandComics1(1945)Cover.thumb.jpg.26ff8189f9fae5057e1421a3262a0430.jpg

    Is corner nibbling a thing in Gold?

    The obvious difference of course is the cover which is manifestly absent from 'Skunky'.

    The indicia of Funland advises that the book was printed in the USA, c1945:

    1145391664_FunlandComics1(1945)Indicia.thumb.jpg.1908830b91c4ab703cb1a8353cfd3c86.jpg

    The interior story pages and content are the same as Skunky - here are the two books side by side:

    499856460_Skunky(CenturyPublications)Undated6d.thumb.jpg.e136201c3dc326ebdff59aaa9655ed70.jpg 435627194_FunlandComics1(1945)Splash.thumb.jpg.8ed248014a27eda20a6f2bac0ccfd783.jpg

    A bit of Googling brings me to this image below, source unknown, which shows my Skunky as being one of a number of coverless Canadian comics, overprinted with UK prices by Superior/Century Publications for distribution in the UK by Streamlined of London:

    Nostalgia-Canadian41.thumb.jpg.937cbf0bddec85869ad1862f2c01fab2.jpg

    It further says "The majority of these were remainders". Hold that thought.

    The assumption is that I have two copies of a comic that was printed in the USA for Croydon Publishing, of which unsold copies were picked up by Superior/Century Publications of Canada, who then stripped them of their covers and then overprinted them with a UK price (which were then subsequently stickered at a higher price).

    Incidentally, could the 6d overprinted price be for Canadian sales and the copies sent to the UK be marked up with the one shilling sticker? Mebbe.

    Back to the pre-1960 UKPV search, can the coverless guts of an original US book, that is then overprinted with a UK/Canadian price in Canada be considered a variant? It can't really, can it. Now if there was a copy of Funland #1 with a printed UK single price, which came from the same print run, then yes. But amended guts? That's pushing it a bit.

    Anyway, on inspection, the guts that comprise 'Skunky' do not actually appear to be remaindered copies of Funland #1 at all. If we look closely at these examples, we can see:

    1. A very different print quality and colouring - Funland is clean, Skunky has got all the sloppy production marks that tend to indicate a crude reprinting:

    1859713250_SkunkyCrop4.jpg.c57032c989814efe7dffb2c46d4462ca.jpg 536200555_SkunkyCrop5.jpg.14a1aac9afbfff193b9424074fbfeea4.jpg

    The next two images show that clearly too - one clean, one with additional bits and bobs and an inferior production quality:

    1178558415_RoughPrintingComparison2Funland.thumb.jpg.c0117a18780ce0a375cf58d0a52d4621.jpg 2048612099_RoughPrintingComparison1Skunky.thumb.jpg.348d4252ac339631abc456415d64e18a.jpg

    2. Next, we can see that the two sets of guts have different overall dimensions:

    319765367_SkunkyvsFunlandSizing.thumb.jpg.586908698c35de717946a6565ec12272.jpg

    3. Any notion that that might be due to trimming evaporates when you see that the actual printed images are slightly bigger on the Skunky page than on the Funland original:

    107996166_PrintedPageSize1.thumb.jpg.53e265cdb5a7db827ca73e4f5adceaa8.jpg 1499515462_PrintedPageSize2.thumb.jpg.3767917814b631c5a2bc96f7d2947a94.jpg

    4. The staples location is different on the two books too, and the Skunky ones are much bigger than the Funland's:

    598673045_StapleAlignmentSize.thumb.jpg.79fa8f0655149d29ece51c94a8a6d02f.jpg

    My staple's bigger than yours mate!

    All the evidence, which is much clearer in hand I might add, indicates that our Canadian Skunky was reprinted rather than being a cover-stripped, remaindered original US book. So the 'Printed in Canada' of the indicia refers not just to the price / logo overprinting, but the whole book. From a UKPV search perspective, that takes Funland #1 out of the equation, as a UKPV must come from the same print run as the headline country copy. That leaves us with Canadian Skunky.

    Every copy of Skunky that I have seen has the 6d overprinted price. Now, if someone was going to reprint the guts, why would they then overprint a UK price? Why not do it all in one go? I say this, as I have noted that the 6d price moves from copy to copy (my copy vs GCD copy below):

    1215699519_SkunkyCrop2.jpg.2d41dadc165edb5b99be5644c38d9b40.jpg 1959523550_SkunkyCrop3.jpg.6f1a5bc63f66350048ec4b10e254711b.jpg

    In summary, it looks like Superior Publishers of Canada obtained the rights (?) to reprint the guts of Croydon Publishing's Funland #1, minus the cover, did so and then added their company livery, an indicia and a 6d price. They then either sent the whole lot to the UK, who promptly increased that price with a sticker, or sold some of the 6d copies locally in Canada. 

    Even if we view Skunky as its own thing, separate to Funland, there is only one reprinted/overprinted version in existence it seems, so it can't be a UK Price Variant. If there was a majority 6d printed Canadian copy and a lesser UK one shilling printed copy, both printed together, we could perhaps make an argument. But there isn't. It seems.

    I rather enjoyed the exercise though, on this book, and it's fun to learn more about books of this age by mucking about with them directly and holding them in your hands. Especially when they include stories such as "Angel Pussy", the pages of which further illustrate the colour and quality contrast between the two books:

    657922882_SkunkyvsFunlandColouring.thumb.jpg.846e91e0d80f67a10f70179c415a2dec.jpg

    Play nicely, Angel Pussy!

    Well, that's Funland vs Skunky out of the way, to get the ball rolling. Next up, Jeep Comics. Or Lucky Coyne. Or maybe K G Murray's Super Adventure Comic. Or another one of the various candidates I've amassed over recent years. I'll see which one takes my fancy before dropping Wonder Comics into the mix. 

    See you next time then, if you're interested....

    thumbnail.thumb.jpg.fc1260873a0a7e304db3f993522c8eef.jpg

     

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    Hi Everyone,

    So I am a huge fan of The Last Ronin Franchise so I was lucky enough to finally receive 75 books I sent over for signature series grading which took about 10 months to complete. Was surprised to received a few 9.9's in the mix. I have over 430 books in the series so I am now slowly getting them all graded.  Should have another 40 books back in the next couple of weeks from the Ronin crew signing which was in May 2022.

    Check out the rest of the books at

    https://comics.www.collectors-society.com/registry/Comics/PeopleSetDetail.aspx?PeopleSetID=149702 

    or for the slideshow

    https://comics.www.collectors-society.com/registry/Comics/SetSlideshow.aspx?PeopleSetID=149702

     

    20220531_210802.jpg

    20220531_211014.jpg

    20220531_211023.jpg

    20220531_213537.jpg

  13. So let's do this!

    In a text to my wonderful girlfriend today, I said something to the effect of "it's like a cloud of lousy has been hanging over this whole week."  

    And it's the truth, we've both felt that way about our respective work weeks.  But that also makes me smile when I reflect on just how much higher the floor is for "lousy" than it used to be in my life.  

    Looking at the calendar, today (May 26th, but my typing carried over into the 27th) is actually the 9 month anniversary of my divorce being court official.  It's like Facebook official, only much legal-er!  We were "only" married 5 years, together for 7 and change, but it was still the worst thing I've ever been through in my life.  Even when you know it's the right thing to do, there's still a really heavy emotional soup to swim through.  I didn't want to come out of it resentful...but I ultimately came out of it resentful.  Though even resentful has a new definition - I don't wish her good, or bad.  I just have no wish.  Why is this you ask?  The money, the house, her...meh, I can easily move forward from those.  The only lasting wound - I got cut off from my three dogs.  After she said she'd never do that.  That's a microcosm of the relationship - a lot of talk, little execution.  Reminds me of my father.

    There's a lasting image in my mind from July 19, 2021, which was the day I moved the rest of my stuff out of the old house and into my new one (I love my new house btw).  I had stopped back over to feed the dogs on my way out of town for work, and as I was about leave out, my Siberian husky, my baby girl, flopped down in front of the front door and raised a back leg in her standard "pet my belly" posture.  I'd left the house plenty of times before, and she had NEVER done that.  It was like she knew I was leaving for good and was saying "Don't go!".  No shame, I cried for half the drive to Minneapolis.  It's a 6 hour drive btw.  Have not seen baby girl or the two boys since that day.  And I asked multiple times.

    One of the things a person learns quickly in codependence recovery - a codependent is drawn to what's familiar, even if it sucks.  My ex-wife was very insecure and frequently nagged me about petty stuff, much like my mother.  And as mentioned before, she promised, or ranted, or threatened, to do this that or the other, and never did.  Much like my father.  But... recovery!  Why didn't I see this?  Because we got together in 2013, and my recovery journey didn't start until a year later.  By that time, I probably felt somewhat pot committed, but more relevant, I wasn't immediately ready to acknowledge that people in my life were hurting me just as much as I had hurt them.  There were probably about 720 distinct invitations to break up.  But my mindset at the time was that I could work on myself and lead by example.  It clearly didn't work.  But that's OK.  I understand why I thought I could do it by myself at that time.

    So yes, I make for a good study in a psychology journal, but what does this all have to do with comics?  Well, if anyone has seen my recent sales threads, you're aware that I've started to lose my passion for collecting while maintaining a strong passion for the hobby.  Somewhat oxymoronic, yes, but I can honestly say I still can't wait for a show once I commit to attending.  And flipping through the raw back issue boxes is still a blast.  But buying the plastic off the wall, then storing it in the comic closet, next to the readers I never read...can't I do something better with that money?  

    The simple answer is yes.  In the past 6 months, I've been on five vacations.  In the past 5 years prior to November 2021, I'd been on one.  And I have had infinitely more fun.  Seriously, no scale can capture the level of fun of these past 6 months in comparison to the prior 60 months.  And a big part of that fun - the people.  I've been surrounded by great people, and great settings, at every turn.  I can finally be me to the fullest, not constantly tiptoeing around someone else's multitude of triggers.

    Focus Matt, comics.  Yes, comics.  The overarching point - my collecting went back into overdrive in January of 2013.  Not coincidentally, that was right around the time that I went through a really bad break-up, which rolled into several really dull dates, then led to hurting a really wonderful woman because I was a total mess of a human, and ultimately led to the relationship with my ex-wife.  And from January 2013 to January 2021, my collecting was always rotating between spots 1-3 of my favored escapes.  Hell, let's just call it my list of priorities.  Collecting was a big help in keeping me distracted from the harshness of a reality I wouldn't acknowledge - the relationship wasn't working.  

    So, when the fact of divorce finally became real in the throes of last year's winter, I started to realize that I had a bunch of...stuff...accumulated.  Some valuable stuff, sure, but still stuff.  And I had to ask myself, "what is all this stuff really doing for me?"  I started downsizing.  The initial stuff was easy, save for maybe the JIM 85.  But that's only because it hasn't stopped appreciating in value haha.  Yet I still trucked a good amount of it to my new house, and I sort of started accumulating again.  I didn't think I needed the distraction, but looking back, maybe I still did a little.  I was on my own (for the first time ever!), and comprehensively, the happiest and healthiest I'd been in quite some time.  Which only accelerated after I adopted my new husky.  

    But there was a lack of people in my life.  I bonded quickly with one set of my new neighbors, but I had lost most of my rolodex of friends in the course of the failed marriage (another casualty of my ex-wife's insecurities).  And my own family was out of the picture (a result of my own choices, zero regrets or regerts there).  Essentially, I was missing someone that I could lean on when I did need it.  Two times when that fact really hit home -- night #2 in Vegas, when I was sitting alone in the Irish pub between the Luxor and Mandalay Bay, and on Christmas.  Christmas has always been a bitter time for me - it was a chore with my parents, and they'd fight like clockwork.  And then my ex-wife turned it into a competition.  "You only got me x, and I got you x, y, and z!"  It's a wonder I didn't have any Christmas nights like in Step Brothers - "You smell like scotch and cheesecake."  Probably because I don't like cheesecake!

    2021 was the first Christmas I was completely free.  And football was on.  But I was still bitter.  Football on TV says, "Merry Christmas, from our family to yours."  I'd respond, 'F YOU!'    

    So ultimately...comics!  Since 2013, I had never made them a financial burden (prior to late 2007 though...), or a hoarding kind of obsession, but they have been my security blanket throughout large portions of my life.  But there's no shame in that.  My counselor proudly says that alcoholism saved his life by making life bearable until he got into recovery.  And comics did much the same for me.  They were my escape from situations that I found unbearable, until I had developed the tools to make any situation bearable.

    Life isn't just bearable though anymore; someway, somehow, I'm enjoying the heck out of it.  EVERY.  SINGLE.  DAY.  My passion for collecting may have lessened in the process, but I'll take that trade off any day of the week!

    Leading to today, and this week's cloud of lousy.  I dislike my employer.  I want to leave.  Everyone in the office seemingly wants to complain to me.  For whatever reason, I don't want to hear it this week.  And this wonderful woman in my life isn't yet here with me every day.  And she's having her own work issues.  And FaceTime is a meager substitute for a long, tight hug when you both really want and need it.  

    There was a time long ago when I would have let this turn into a never ending downward spiral (at least until some temporary fix came along).  

    BUT...there are still many positives at work.  I'm not just going to up and quit, because that would be idiotic.  And maybe other opportunities are on the horizon, we will see.  But more importantly - soon, very soon, she'll be here with me.  And when late December of 2022 rolls around, I fully expect that I'll probably come home one day to find her in the midst of beer number three, trying to gift wrap the cat, while our dogs look on in sheer perplexity.  And I'm going to lose my damn fool mind laughing.

    It's not a never ending spiral.  Lousy is only temporary.  Tomorrow is always a new day.

    Thanks for listening :cheers:

  14. The grade is in and the experiment is now fully complete - I am officially a conservation nerd! :D

    CGC correctly flagged the married cover as well as all the work done - and all of that passed the test in order to get a Conserved grade of 3.0! This is honestly slightly higher than I was expecting (my initial estimate was 2.5 at most), and even the White pages is an amazing cherry on top.

    How it started:  0.5 incomplete, its life is in shambles. 
    How it's going:  3.0 conserved, ballin' with white pages.  

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  15. Like all of my off to see the Wizard entries this is showing my submissions to CGC. Raw pictures, updates as I receive them, and final pictures ( well hopefully as with some of the others there were times they had to make return trips. [Which were also posted])

    These were the books I chose to send in for Terry Austin. 

     

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  16. The Mystery of the Harvey 15c Variants From Old 1972...

    What's that you say? The mystery of the Harvey 15c variants, you say? Never heard of them!

    Well, I certainly hadn't until last year when, whilst researching the distribution of Harvey comics in the UK by our old friends L Miller & Co, I happened across a book on eBay proclaiming an unexpected cover price. "Oh", I thought, "I didn't know there were price variants for these?", and I started Googleating. I like to think I'm quite good at Googleating now, after years of scouring online for variants, but I couldn't find anything about them. Not one reference, one comment, one loving blog column - nothing. And not one copy on the GCD either, or in any of the usual comic places (including here). Odd.

    More in depth Googling ensued until I finally found one reference in a wonderful book called 'The Harvey Comics Companion' by Mark Arnold, which I duly purchased.

    Here's what it had to say, on page 411: "These (Hot Stuff #110, 111 and Little Dot #143) are the only Harvey books known to have these variants":

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    "Blimey" I thought, "Only three examples? These are rare", so I started looking for them. Oddly, given the obvious pedigree of Mr Arnold, I soon found quite a few more than the three listed and I thought "Aye, aye, I'm on to something here...."

    Fast forward a year or so and not only have I found a whopping 26 examples, but I've also, I think, established why they exist. That doesn't happen often - the what and the why. And happily, given my UK credentials, I think they exist because we - The UK - exist. I'm going to drop Mark Arnold a line shortly, to let him know what more I've found and it will either be a pleasant surprise for him or he's been keeping updates quiet for the next volume of the Harvey Companion (go buy it by the way, it's brilliant). Mark, if you're reading, Hello :hi:

    Anyway, Harvey 15c price variants exist for at least 26 books dated between April and October 1972. Amazing really, to be posting this information, in depth, for what appears to be the first time, when the books themselves are 50 years old this very year. Happy Birthday, books.

    Here's a nice looking example, with its 20c regular US copy alongside it:

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    Cracking cover, isn't it. And notice how Harvey always chopped the code off?  :)

    Read on, if you're interested, for the full fifteen cent variation low down!

  17. Wombat is such a great guy for gifting me this, and this book will never leave my collection.  Autographed by the Master Frank Frazetta. 

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  18. Comicsarefun

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    Recent Entries

    Comicsarefun
    Latest Entry

    Reboot of an earlier journal....

     

    After years of trying to collect every comic I could find, I once owned 100,000 comics (most of them almost worthless).  By selling, trading, and buying; I transformed my collection to just 50 comics.  I previously created a journal picturing those 50 comics.  Late last year I parted with half of my books to buy a childhood grail of mine.  I have slowly been adding comics to get back to 50.  I tried to edit my last journal, but I was unable to change my initial 50 entries.  So, I have decided to start fresh with a new journal.  I will update the list when new comics arrive, as well as explain why I got the book and/or kicked out the old ones.  This serves for a digital library for me to enjoy my books while they sit in safe storage.  It is mostly for my entertainment, but feel free to comment if you wish!

  19. Not unlike this book itself, I'm torn! Recently acquired this seriously chewed copy with intention of doing one or the other, but not sure which way to go, though I do know that I will submit this afterwards for grading. At a minimum, I intend to leaf-cast the cover and every interior wrap to fill out the missing paper. That, along with a dry-cleaning of the cover, would hopefully come in just under the wire with a conserved grade. But it's also tempting to go further and restore the missing art/graphics inside and out, and give it a more thorough cleaning. Luckily, whatever rodent feasted on this didn't chew significantly into the interior art past the first several wraps. And, chew aside, the inside pages are fairly nice and bright.

    So....what to do? Granted, this is hardly a major book investment-wise (it qualifies as a key, sorta, in that it's the first cover appearance of Lois Lane for this title). But I'm genuinely curious how others feel about the issues at play -- financial return, historical value etc -- when deciding on restoration versus conservation. Meanwhile, I'm gonna start dry-cleaning and leaf-casting and continue to mull it over...

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