Welcome to the 40 Years of Comics Project. As I’ve mentioned before on this blog, I at one time ran a less-than-successful comic book shop called “The Magic Mirror.” At one time the amount of stuff I was left with after the store closed could have filled 2 houses. No kidding. Presently, all I have left of the store is a “Grand Opening” sign, my original business plan, and an enormous and wonderful comic book collection. Over the years, I have added to this already impressive collection, and, as of 2015, have somewhere in the neighbourhood of 12000 individual works of comics (Edit: A scant 2 years later I've just hit 14000. It's an illness, I know!). I approximate because I’ve not yet catalogued my graphic novel and trade paperback collection, nor have I catalogued my magazines. I have, however, catalogued my comic books. I, again as of 2015, sit at 11805 individual works.
But here’s the thing: At a best guess, I’ve read probably only half of them. The other half came from my store, and many are titles and characters that I had absolutely no interest in reading. (So why keep them, you ask? That’s a whole other conversation.) But I thought, recently, that it is an extremely unfair assumption to make that these comics, in essence, have nothing to offer me aside from their physical presence in my collection. So I’m going to read them. All.
If you divide 11805 by 365, you get 32.342465753424657534somethingsomethingsomething....
Let’s say 32. That means that, reading one comic a day, I will make it through my collection sometime around my 73rd birthday. I call this the “40 Years of Comics Project” to account for additions to the collection over that period and the aforementioned uncatalogued collections. The plan at the moment is to read the separate subdivisions of the collection (which I’ll explain one day, I’m sure) in alphabetical order. If that begins to bore me, I might change things up, but this seems the easiest way to keep track right now.
(Of course, thinking of it that way, I realize that every comic published by Archie Comics is filed under the publisher, rather than title, in the collection. Which means I will have a stretch of about a year, pretty soon, of pure Archie comics. Wow.)
What this also means is that, once I start, I’m going to try, really, really try, to post a short blog post about each comic. Look for some of them to be single lines saying something like “Busy day. Archie #603 was good.”
But hopefully sometimes I’ll have something interesting to say. And I’ll try to note whether it’s a comic I’ve read before or not.
So, I can’t ask you to take this ride with me to the end. In a lot of ways, the only person this project is really going to speak to is me, the many mes I will be along the way. But if you want to tag along for a bit, see where I am and what’s going on, maybe it’ll speak to you a little bit too.