So what exactly was Preview Night? Well, it’s a little challenging to describe. On the outside, it looks like a bunch of comic book nerds trading and buying comics at a bar. But it was much more than that – we held it at an awesome craft brewery called Stereo Brewing, and instead of regular old common comics, it had some of the rarest and most sought after Golden Age comic books in the hobby. And instead of comic book nerds…well we’re still comic book nerds, but it attracted some of the biggest collectors in the hobby. Oh yeah, and there was also an open bar and food graciously sponsored by legendary Brian Ketterer, or better known as Foolkiller on the CGC boards.
Haggling is like a game of Texas Hold’em. It’s less about the cards and more about out-playing the player.
In my world, I use these skills to get the best deals on vintage comic books and collectibles at comic conventions, garage sales, etc. But it’s important not to overstep your boundaries and to err on the side of being a polite and respectful person. Remember, sellers have the right to sell any merchandise as they please. Even if their prices are insultingly high. I’m by no means perfect but I’ve experienced both getting great bargains and overpaying that I can probably help others with the Dos and Don’ts.
Hunting for back issues at a comic book convention can be a very fun and rewarding experience, but it can also be stressful and expensive! After attending many cons myself and spending countless hours flipping through long boxes, I’ve designed a fairly effective process that works well for me. Everyone is different and has their own goals and objectives at a con, so feel free to use this information in a way that works best for you.
The focus of this guide is strictly on buying back issues at comic book conventions; not toys, artwork, trade paperbacks, high value CGC-graded books or anything else at a con. Each of those has its own unique approach, but if you’re attending a con to try and fill some gaps in your collection, pick up some key issues or dig through dollar bins, then this is the guide you should be reading.
One of the biggest rushes of going through dollar bins is finding those hidden gems. That Defenders #10 or that Moon Knight #1 for $1 are fantastic finds. Some times these books are mis-categorized or overlooked, or the dealer is simply unaware. There are 2 reasons to look through dollar bins – the first is to fill in any missing issues in your collections, a worthy and noble cause, and the second is to find comic books which don’t belong there. We’ll be talking about the latter.
After much back and forth, I finally decided to take the plunge and upgrade my short boxes to DrawerBoxes. I say “upgrade,” because that’s what it is – they are higher quality and have more functional utility than standard comic book long boxes and short boxes.
DrawerBoxes by The Collection Drawer Co. is a comic book storage system designed to create a stackable system of boxes that slide in and out like drawers (hence the name), creating a more efficient way to access your collection. For most collectors, long and short boxes are simply stacked on top of each other, or on shelves, which is a fine way to store your comic books, but it’s very inconvenient to unstack boxes or pull them off shelves and remove the cover and replace them just to have access to your books. It’s not the end of the world, or the most difficult task, but it does get very annoying and repetitive. DrawerBoxes aim to solve that issue.
The unofficial San Francisco Comic Con after party for comic book collectors to buy, sell and trade.
Join us for the 1st annual Shortboxed Comic Book Swap – the unofficial San Francisco Comic Con after party for comic book collectors to buy, sell and trade.
$20 ticket gets you:
– Admission to private VIP lounge
– Opportunity to bring up to 1 short box of comics to buy, sell, and trade with other collectors
– 1 Shortboxed enamel pin (choose from 5 different designs)
– Appetizers (with vegetarian and vegan options)
– 1 raffle ticket for prizes throughout the evening
– Free-to-play pool table
Comikaze Los Angeles Comic Con remains the premiere comic con for mid-sized conventions on the west coast. Reporting a record 91,000 fans in attendance, it’s come a long way since it’s inception in 2011.