Sometimes I think I prefer graphic novels and trade paperbacks to single issues; they have everything in one book and overall they can end up being about the same price or even cheaper. It’s the convenience factor, y’know? No waiting to see what happens next, no work to make sure you get every issue. Granted, that all takes some of the fun out of it too, so it becomes about which series you care about following as they occur and which you’re perfectly happy having in one book. For example, I definitely want to follow Lumberjanes from its first issue rather than waiting. To be honest, though, that’s not necessarily how it’s worked for me so far, simply because I’m still pretty new at comics and most of what I want started and ended before I became interested and knowledgeable.
Tank Girl, for example, was way far in when I ordered Tank Girl Vol. 1, my first trade paperback and my first comic piece in general. It seems like my books have gone just about all over the place since then. My TP/GN collection currently includes: Ghost World: Special Edition, Watchmen, Tank Girl Vol. 1-3, Powerpuff Girls Classics Vol. 1: Power Party, Emo Boy 1, Scott Pilgrim’s Precious Little Life, Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon 1-6 + Kitchen Princess (which I include together because they’re manga), Buffy Omnibus 1, Locke & Key Vol. 1: Welcome to Lovecraft, Wonder Woman Vol. 1: Blood (New 52)., Harley Quinn, and Zombies. (I have a lot of single, lonely volumes. Sad face.)
I picked up Zombies from my LCS when I was going to college–you remember, the first one I had that was local to me? I went in one afternoon, by myself, and browsed the shelves for something I would like, and I ended up torn between Zombies and another book I can’t recall. I asked the guy at the register (who turned out to be the owner) which one he thought I should get because I couldn’t decide and only had enough money for one. He ended up selling me on Zombies because it was the last copy and he said they probably wouldn’t be getting anymore in. And so went my first in-store comic-related purchase. My next two: Harley Quinn and Tank Girl Vol. 3.
Most recently I got Wonder Woman: Blood. For so long I’ve been wanting to start reading about Wonder Woman, but it seemed I couldn’t find a definitive (and affordable) answer on where to start, so I simply buckled down and made a decision. Fortunately, I suppose, this was one of the few Wonder Woman books in my new LCS, so it wasn’t a terribly difficult decision. Wonder Woman is one character whose presence in my collection I want to greatly expand, as I’ve always been a fan but haven’t known much beyond her Amazonian background. As for characters who don’t even have a presence, I would like some Batman (mostly for the appearances of other characters I love, like Harley and Ivy), Batwoman and Batgirl, and various Marvel characters I want to start introducing myself to, because I have even less Marvel in any of my collection than I do DC. But who am I kidding, I just want a bigger collection overall. I want to buy ALL the comic books!