I began accumulating comic books at the age of eight and over the next few years I was prone to losing a few issues now and again. Still my stacks of comics grew and I kept the issues piled up in shelves and drawers, a couple of hundred issues or so - no backing boards or bags. Going into my teens and still very much into the hobby I began to be aware of the notion of comics as investment. That comic books were 'graded' according to their 'condition'; and that the better the condition the higher the 'resale' value. At this point, I started buying specialty boxes to store my comic books, then bagging them, with the acid-free backing boards coming in later. I even bought a few Mylar sleeves but the price was too prohibitive. I also changed the way I read my books, holding them just so, protecting the spine and the pages from the slightest crease or fold. What a mistake.<br> <br> I wasted a lot of money on these paraphernalia. The meticulous care with which I would open and read a book took a bit off the fun of reading it. But my worst regret was scolding my brothers when I would see them 'mishandling' my precious comics - all this collecting lunacy made me into a bit of a jerk is what happened.<br> <br> Today I still have my comics - going into the thousands now. But they are unbagged, un-boarded and stored for easy access when I want to read. Why? Because that's what they are for: To read. To enjoy. To share.<br> <br> How about collecting? Not all comics are collectibles. Most comic books are NOT collectibles. I don't own any Golden Age comic books. I don't have any key Silver or Bronze Age books like Hulk No. 181 or Iron Fist No. 14. If I did, then yes, I would protect them, I would slab them properly and get them graded. But most of my comics are treasured by me for the beauty of the art, the power of the writing - because they are fantastic reads.<br> <br> It takes money to be a collector. Investment grade comics cost substantial amounts of money. I would like to collect but this is something I will only undertake if I ever jump into another tax bracket. There's no use speculating and second guessing the market by considering the typical Modern Age book in the racks these days as a potential collectors item - it's simply too early to tell. The collectibles have been identified, English Manhwa Korean - https://nmanhwa.com/ are rather pricey, and most likely will continue to go up in price. We're talking Amazing Fantasy No. 15 here not Civl War no. 4.<br> <br> So unless you can afford it, forget about being a collector and just enjoy your comics.