This thread will be about my journey to the million dollar comic and the struggles, failures and successes that come with it since many boardies requested it I will not longer post my transactions but try what revat said . I also have a bunch of inspirational people two of them being Walt Disney and Steve Jobs because I want to be the next rags to riches story not to the degree of Steve Jobs or Walt Disney but I want to make a million dollars buying and selling a comic and making enough money with this venture to never again say I can't afford something
Thoughts and plans
Sell my comics
Sell IH 180 CGC 5.0
Milestones I want to reach
Get my first four figure sale
To see old comments for this Journal entry, click here. New comments can be added below.
I finally completed my write-up for my newly acquired world class copy of Incredible Hulk #181 CGC 9.8 W for my CGC Registry Set entitled, "Enter Wolverine!" Just wanted to share with the larger CGC Comic Collecting Community! Enjoy!! -Professor Pecora
[AND NOW...THE WOLVERINE!]
Incredible Hulk #181 showcases the 1st full appearance of Wolverine and his 2nd overall appearance in the history of comics!
Moreover, there are only a handful of comic books that have literally stood the test of time and have reigned over any other book of its era; Incredible Hulk #181 is one of those exceptions!
If you were to think of a single comic book to represent the most sought-after, most valuable and most significant issue of an entire age, it would be Action Comics #1 of the Golden Age (1938-1955); Amazing Fantasy #15 of the Silver Age (1956-1969); and Incredible Hulk #181 of the Bronze Age (1970-1984). In other words, the 1st appearances of Superman, Spider-Man and Wolverine have superseded the importance of any other character of their respective time periods!
With that said, the world was introduced to the claw-slashing, berserker-raged mutant Wolverine, who made a long-lasting first impression during his debut in November of 1974, as he battled the most powerful character in the Marvel Universe—the Incredible Hulk! However, Wolverine wasn’t anything like the major superheroes before him; instead, he was ill-mannered, hot-tempered and walked the earth with a tortured soul, as he would later struggle with his origins and the purpose of his creation. He was a government experiment—the perfect weapon—Weapon X! As a direct result, the “anti-hero” was born!
Wolverine was originally created by writer Len Wein and designed by Marvel Art Director, John Romita, Sr. However, in October of 1974; it was the late Herb Trimpe (May 26, 1939 – April 13, 2015) who first drew the character for publication in a last panel cameo featured in the Incredible Hulk #180. The following month, Wolverine was depicted on the front cover lunging in midair and slashing through heavy chains to attack the Goliath Green Machine! In my personal opinion, this is by far the most badass 1st appearance entrance in the history of comics! Wolverine battled the most powerful being in the Marvel Universe head on, so the story title, “AND NOW…the WOLVERINE!” served as an impact statement as if to say, “move over Hulk…another badass is in town to take on all challengers!” With that being said, Herb Trimpe’s classic cover of Incredible Hulk #181 forever remains etched in the hearts and minds of all Wolverine fans and collectors, and is easily recognized and revered worldwide by any comic book collector or connoisseur!
Roughly 8 months later in the Summer of 1975, Wolverine made his 2nd “full” appearance in Giant-Size X-Men #1 and became a major addition to the new X-Men team. While Wolverine was kicking a** and talking trash in the process, he became increasingly popular with avid X-Men readers and became the most popular character on the X-Men roster! From this success, Marvel would later feature Wolverine in his 1st solo comic; in a classic four-part miniseries, which was published from September – December of 1982. Fast forward a little over six years ahead, and Marvel finally catapulted Wolverine into his own monthly series in November of 1988! Furthermore, in the 43 years of his existence, Wolverine has become the most popular character in the entire Marvel Universe, next to the franchise’s marquee character—the Amazing Spider-Man!
In the Marvel cinematic world, Wolverine has been characterized on the silver screen by famed actor Hugh Jackman for an astonishing 17 consecutive years in a total of 9 films! With the start of the new millennium in the year 2000 up until the year 2017, Hugh Jackman (as Wolverine) has been featured in the following Marvel films: X-Men (2000); X2: X-Men United (2003); X-Men: The Last Stand (2006); X-Men Origins: Wolverine (2009); X-Men: First Class (2011); The Wolverine (2013); X-Men: Days of Future Past (2014); X-Men: Apocalypse (2016); and Logan (2017).
To say that Hugh Jackman has had success towards making Wolverine and the X-Men a viable movie franchise would be a gross understatement! Rather, he has ventured into “legendary status,” with almost 2 decades of filmmaking and helping to contribute a Worldwide Box Office Total of OVER 5 BILLION DOLLARS! As a direct result, copies of Incredible Hulk #181 will only continue to appreciate and rise in value annually, making it not only the most coveted book of the Bronze Age to collect and showcase, but one of the most secure long-term investments!
According to the CGC Census Report as of December 12, 2017, out of an impressive total of 9,989 copies graded, only one (1) freak of nature was graded (WAY BACK in April of 2001) as a Universal MINT 9.9, which sold for $150,000 on Comic Link back in February of 2011! Furthermore, only one hundred four (104) copies (including my copy) were graded as a Universal 9.8 and only ten (10) copies were graded as a Signature Series 9.8. With these statistics in mind, the rarity factor for a CGC Universal IH #181 in 9.8 is only 1.04% of the total population! That’s extremely rare! Considering the vast number of copies that have already been professionally graded and the fact that many 9.8 copies are stashed away in private collections, it is going to become increasingly difficult to locate any 9.8 examples; raw or professionally graded!
On that note, this particular CGC 9.8 copy sports PERFECT COVER WRAP, PERFECT CENTERING, and PERFECT WHITE PAGE QUALITY along with being PERFECTLY cut! (okay, if you want to be a snob...99.9% perfect! ) The color saturation is deep and bright and the corners are razor sharp! Of MAJOR significance is the absolutely PERFECT CENTERING & REGISTRATION ALONG THE SPINE! It is extremely RARE even in the 9.8 grade to find a copy in this immaculate condition, which makes the Professor Pecora Copy of Incredible Hulk #181 one of the finest and most valuable copies in the world!
I purchased this PRISTINE GEM in March of 2017 from the same auction house where the single CGC 9.9 MINT copy last exchanged hands—Comic Link! I had to bid very aggressively in the final seconds of the auction to secure it, along with auctioning off the majority of my CGC 9.8 Bronze Age Marvel Key Collection in the Pedigree Comic’s April 2017 Grand Auction to pay for it, but at the end of the day...it was all WORTH IT!
In closing, I would like to thank Mr. Doug Schmell of Pedigree Comics for helping me to acquire this MEGA Bronze Age Key!
Original Art by Jerry deCaire
Jerry deCaire came to my school a couple weeks ago to do his presentation to the students about how mathematics applies to comic art. He also did a bunch of drawings for them. Being a big comic geek, I spent some time with him talking about the trade and expressed my interest in him doing a drawing for me to frame in my office. He took my ideas of a fight between Mr. Fixit and Wolverine with him and today, his artwork arrived. I am very pleased.
First they get me to buy the Death in Platinum now this?
I just purchasd a Bagged Adventures of Superman 500, Platinum Edition. looks similar to Superman 75 Platinum but w/o the bleeding symbol. I know when i got the 75 plat. cgc the inside was a silver embossed supes symbol compared to the gray flat inner cover. but does anyone know whats inside the 500? either way they got $100 from me. (Picture of superman 500).
Modern age books
So I have my third round of submissions packaged and ready to ship out tomorrow. I decided to save a little money and just send a few modern age books. They are as follows:
Amazing Spider-Man 238====9.2
Battle Chasers(Red Monika Variant)====9.4
Dark Horse Presents Annual 1998====9.6
Green Lantern 201(first Kilowog)====9.2
Incredible Hulk 340====9.4
Iron Man 282====9.8
New Mutants 98====9.4
All in all a nice set of good looking keys. There are not many graded copies of Green Lantern 201 and DHP Annual 1998. With the new GL movie coming I thought Kilowog's first app. may be more sought after. My Iron Man 282 is beautiful! Part of me really hopes that it would grade 9.9 because I really cannot see a single flaw in it. Not a stress or a tear even by the staples. Corners are so sharp they could cut you! The ASM 238 still has the tattoo inside, not that it matters. OPG says the tattoo no longer affects the grade because people were swapping it out with a similar one found in a FF issue from the same month. The Battle Chasers ish is just a guilty pleasure of mine. I love Joe Mad art and the cover is just plain sexy! My last round of submissions still has not even been graded. Once they have I will post the results along with my grades and see how they stack up! Thanks for reading and happy collecting!
To see old comments for this Journal entry, click here. New comments can be added below.
Amazing Fantasy #15 variant in Dallas Morning News Sunday August 20, 2006 added in with the normal Sunday coupons.
Amazing Fantasy #15 variant in Dallas Morning News Sunday August 20, 2006 added in with the normal Sunday coupons. I didn't realize that the newspapers would have a
Something to consider!
Once Dazzler #1 came out in March of 1981, there were countless 80's issues that have two versions of covers. Those with the barcode on the cover(news-stand editions) and those with an image in it's place(Direct editions). They also vary slightly in the spot where the issue number and price are.
A fellow collector, TNerb, recently wrote in a journal that he will pass up on any graded comic with the barcode on the cover. Personally, I agree with the choice on a purely cosmetic level. The direct editions are definitely prettier to look at, however, another thing to consider is the simple fact that if the comic was a news-stand edition, it was sitting on some metal rack in a convenience store or on a shelf in some regular bookstore.
That means that countless people (mainly kids) would handle them or flip through them causing damage of some sort in almost every case. As a result, there are nearly NONE of the news-stand editions that could EVER reach a 9.8 or better grade.
The art on the cover remains exactly the same between editions, so while I prefer the direct editions, I have no problem purchasing a news-stand edition since in my mind, it is actually A MUCH RARER THING TO POSSESS!
I would never presume to say that because of this, news-stand editions should be worth more registry points than direct editions. This will more than likely never happen due to the difficulty of updating all the comics involved in the registry, as well as the fact that not everyone will agree with me, but I think it's worth at least talking about.
So while my copies of New Mutants #17, Alpha Flight #10, Thor #374(in my Mutant Massacre set), and even my Star Wars #103 are news-stand copies, they are THE RARER copies of these issues in 9.8! I might get direct edition copies of some of these down the road, but a 9.8 is a 9.8 no matter which version it is.
Hopefully this gives you something to think about and gets your mind working considering the possibilities. I've loved comic collecting for most of my life, and having a chance to express my views in a community like this is fantastic.
Keep up the collecting everyone!
To see old comments for this Journal entry, click here. New comments can be added below.
For those who say they are switching to PGX. I will never buy those books. I will be forever in the CGC team. The expertise and quality are there, I will never settle for second best to save a few dollars ...
getting bit by the horror bug, must fight urges....
So far I have been able (largely thanks to my budget) to keep my collection to a relatively tight focus. Green Lantern (Original Hal era), Amazing Spider-Man (mostly 101-200 era), Star Wars and some Marvel Team-Ups constitute more than 75% of my newly forged collection. My raw to-be-submitted pile fall into the same categories, or my GA focus of Scifi (mostly Planet Comics).
But for the last few days my eye has wandered. Over on the boards there are plenty of Super Hero, Golden Age, and Sci-Fi collectors, but there are also those sub-groups that have not interested me... most notably War and Horror comics... and it is these horror comics that pull me strongest.
I am completely falling for the Lady in white; style covers from the DC 70s era. Now they are not all in white (and who knows if they are in fact ladies!) but they all have the same aesthetic appeal. They are not all in distress; though most are... Is this as far as my new found interest will spread into the horror genre? Will I find myself bidding crazy dollars on EC Tales from the Crypt this time next year? My wallet screams noooooooo! but who knows...
Update: The dam has broken, and I've bought my first lady in white Gothic horror book. Lord have mercy on my soul...
[disclaimer: the below images are not my books, just the images that are tempting me into buying them]
it sounds like the sky is falling...
While my position on the $5 per invoice fee hasn't changed; that is I am still upset about it and I still think it is a poor business decision as it weighs unfairly on the small collector that cannot afford to submit 30 books on an invoice; I am surprised by the passion that it has stirred in others.
In review, I submitted ten invoices this year - two coupon submissions, one signature series, on silver age, and six modern. I have no idea if the $5 charge will apply to coupon submissions or not and I'm not going to pop over an look in the middle of my journal, so I am going to assume, right or wrong, that it does/will apply to my next coupon submission - and I will have another. For when my membership expires next September, I will renew again. So let's consider the effect of the $50 I would have had to spend extra had my 2011 submission been submitted under the 2012 guidelines:
I would have had one less submission of modern books.
That's it. I would have spent that same money at CGC, not more, not much less - because I have a hard budget for comics, and a portion of that budget is for CGC - a specific hard budget, not a flexable one. And 2011 represents the year I sent in the most submissions - I think I did five or six in 2010, and only four in 2009...I just don't submit that much stuff myself.
As for the increase in actual grading and encapsulation costs: I guess I would have to had sent in two fewer books in those nine remaining submissions to cover that additional cost. All told - I would have ended up with seven fewer CGC graded books in my collection.
But - with an increase in all the grading costs - that 10% discount is worth more, right? See, there is a silver lining.
Would I like CGC to reconsider the idea of the $5 fee? Sure. Am I going to go away if they don't? No.
Are they going to get more money from me than they would anyway? No.
But are they going to do less work for the same money? Yeah, they are.
Oh, and Merry Christmas!
Here's another nugget of information.
I was just looking through the PGX website and pricing what it would cost to have my books graded and I was very happy with the outcome on behalf of PGX I say thank you for being so reasonable with your costs and not having a membership fee. So as of Dec 31 my footsteps will be heading to PGX along with my hard earned money. I also compared the slabbing of both Fee G Fee and PGX and the slabbing looks to be a bit better with PGX so on that note I wonder if you can hear the Fee G Fee door closing behind me as I walk in the PGX world.
Mandatory teaser? No thanks, I'm no bully and I kinda like you people.
So I have a batch of books I put in a December auction and the universe decided it was time for me to learn a lesson with the first 2 silver age books that just ended last night.
Sub-Mariner 1 CGC 9.4 ended at $304.55 (which is almost $100 below the 12 month average for this book at this grade according to GPAnalysis) and Daredevil 7 CGC 7.0 ended at $194.50 ( almost $60 below the annual GPA average for this book at this grade)
The lessons learned are:
1. Don't auction/consign books during the Holiday shopping season (I already had a feeling about this, but this was the last month of the NO SELLER FEES special that was being offered.) I guess the idea of focusing funds on buying gifts for others this time of year takes many potential bidders out the equation and less competition/bidders means less demand and equals lower realized prices on the books at auction. I saw this coming, but gambled anyway.
2. Maybe NO RESERVE auctions are not for me on my headlining books. Maybe my next batch of books I flip will have a reserve or a pre-set minimum bid for the bigger ticket items rather than starting at $1.
I barely made anything on these "flips" (more like flops this time) to the tune of only about 14% profit on these 2 books.
Here is to hoping the rest of my books in this auction do better and a big CONGRATULATIONS to the winners of these books that scored big time.
To see a list of my books in auction that end tonight you can head over to the CGC Forum on the message boards and look at the last board "Comics Market - Sales Advertising - Ebay, Dealers, etc." and you can find my thread titled "NoReserve! CGC Bronze/Copper Age X-Men, TMNT, Daredevil, Spidey, & more END SOON" there is a link to the auction pages.(The link is was trying to use kept getting corrupted)
Good luck and happy hunting!
I'm going to work now.
Thanks for the memories.
I totally agree with what Lee K wrote about in his journal about the $5 handling fee. It's an insult and an outrage to charge that when thats part of CGC's business in the first place is to handle our books with care, next they will tell us there is a $2.50 surcharge for rubber gloves when handling each book as well. Ive decided that enough is enough and the greed of every company including comic grading has gone too far. Also the turn around time is ridiculously too long and it makes me wonder what the hell am I paying these High prices for grading and that doesn't even include my shipping costs to and from CGC. Its time I look elsewhere for getting my books graded such as PGX who.grade their books faster with no membership fee, which I won't be renewing in 2012.
Marvel Sticker Album
Remember back in the mid-80's when different companies would come out with sticker sets and then have comic-shaped albums that you could stick them into in order to display your collection?
I don't specifically remember which franchises did this, but I DO remember seeing quite a number of them. None of them interested me until Marvel took notice of the phenomenon and decided to copy the trend.
The Official Marvel Series Sticker Set came out in 1986, along with (go figure) a comic book that you could stick them into.
There were 77 stickers in the set and they came in packs just like baseball cards or whatever. The organization of these packs was completely random. This was before Magic: the Gathering had ever come out. From what I understand, they made the same number of each sticker, but who knew what stickers would come in a pack?
Anyway, I DID manage to put together a whole set of all 77 stickers AND the Sticker Album to put them in. I went ahead and actually stuck each sticker into it's rightful place in the album, which by the way has other background artwork in it as well.
Below is a scan of the actual Album. I wonder if I sent it in to CGC, how would they handle it?
I KNOW it won't get a 9.8, but it might manage a respectable 9.2 or 9.4.
Would it get a Qualified Grade since items were added to it from it's original state? Would they put on the label that "All 77 stickers are included"?? Would they base the grade on the condition of each and every sticker? How would they do this, I wonder?
What do you guys think?
I added Marvel Two in One #64 signed by George Perez today. In the 80's I had owned the original art for the cover. I believe I paid $75 dollars for it at the time. I also owned some double slash pages from Ragman and Tarzan by Joe Kubert and Superman Swan pages. I sold them all with my first comic collection for $200 dollars because there wasn't a market for them in 1984. Probably the biggest mistake I ever made.
Submissions waiting to be graded over another weekend...
So I had two modern submissions and one economy submission at CGC this past month plus...
Yesterday was day 41 for the first modern submission and I received my books back.
Today is day 29 for the other modern submission and it is still 'verified'
Today is day 19 for the economy submission - and it is 'verified' as well.
Those are business days, not calendar days and they don't include national holidays...
really? aw man...
I called CGC today to get an update on where the graders are with modern submissions since I am still awaiting my signature series invoice from Long Beach Comic Con, and the last time the website was updated was on 11/07/11. Per Nicole, they are on 11/01/11, not the 10/18/11 that is posted on the site. So most likely Monday/Tuesday I'll at least know the grades. The bad news... that means the books will ship sometime next week and I used the office address, which will be closed 12/22/11 thru 01/03/12, which sometime inbetween is when central mail and documents will receive my package. I won't have these suckers in my possession until 2012! Great....
Happy Holidays everyone.
Iron Man #1, X-Men #12 (first appearance of Juggernaut), Tales of Suspense #81
After checking, rechecking, doublechecking and triplechecking every day for the past two weeks, my first order status has finally moved from 'verified' to 'graded.'
Quick history: I bought an Iron Man #1 labeled 'MINT!!!!' from a store several years ago, put all of my comics in storage and recently unearthed them to sell on eBay, etc. Of course it took 3 weeks to FIND the comics, and it they were in the absolute LAST box I unopened, but nonetheless I was pretty happy with the find.
First step was to take them to a local comic shop to get the owner's impression on any that might be of value. I figured the Iron Man #1 was close to mint, but as the owner pointed out, there were some minor imperfections and a glance of the side one could see the pages were no longer white. On the flip side, I also discovered that I had bought a beautiful copy of X-Men 12, probably at the same time that I bought #94,#95,#96, and #100 (which were not in the best shape). I also had a decent-looking Tales of Suspense #81.
After selling X-Men #94,#95,#96 and #100 as a lot on eBay for a decent price, probably about 85-90% to raw book value, I invested the some of the sale in a collectors society membership, and then waited for my coupon to show up in the mail. Within a couple of weeks I had shipped off Iron Man, X-Men #12 and TOS #81 to Florida for grading.
The comic shop owner figured each would fetch between a 6 or an 8 depending on who looked at the books. I was hopeful for 8 to 8.5, and perhaps a 7.5 on the TOS- which was again just a throw in.
Well, three weeks later my order status finally changed, and the results are as follows:
Iron Man #1 9.0 (off-white pages)
X-Men #12 9.2 (off-white pages)
TOS #81 8.5 (off-white pages)
Now I need to figure out if I'm going to try to flip these or hold on to them. Either way, the CGC book value on these jumped $2k over what I paid for them back in 1995.
Now I'm definitely going to have to submit another order before the year is out and the prices go up!
Can't wait to get these puppies back in my hands.
Time for flame wars.
Why are you here? what is the point of your flames? You have no sets, you only have two posts that enflame people, and while I didn't mind your first post, you obviously now have some kind of vendetta or insecurity.
Seriously. Answer me. Coward. Why are you even here?
*Revision starts here, and I'm going to start first by saying, forget about it. Don't answer my question:
If I don't like quilt knitting, I don't go out of my way to visit their knitting circles and call them names. Speaking of, your use of the word "person_having_a_hard_time_understanding_my_point", besides being insensitive, would guarantee I would never hire you... some of us, actually most of us, are just regular guys. I'm guessing you're either an 18 year old in his parents basement or some middle aged guy who has no outlet for aggression because your friends quite frankly don't care about your opinions. That's why you vent here.
The way I see it, you have two choices, shut up and slink away into the internet blackness, or keep going until you get booted. It's a matter of when, not if you get removed from here.
So either way, if we have to wait you out, that's fine, because after this posting I think we'll just put this issue of "you" in a shoebox and you'll be ignored here as you are in real life.
Have a nice day.
Waiting for the shoe to drop
So I checked on my 20 day submission coupons and saw it was scheduled for grading. Great, right? Then I looked in to the received details for the first time... my X-Men number 3 is an Apparent SA.
It wouldn't have mattered if I knew this 19 days ago, yesterday, whenever, but it looks like I've got another hack job book. I'm going to go through my ebay receipts and other receipts to track down the seller, but I think this may have been the copy I picked up at the Pittsburgh Comic Con this year... and if that's where it was from, I know the face of the guy who sold it and will give him a talking to next time I see him.
I find a lot of the early X-Men ungraded go for much much cheaper than the CGCs, but this is the risk you run. I keep a pocket blacklight for checking color touches, but some things I still can't detect well in person if someone did a good enough job.
Oh well. Look for a purple graded X-Men 3 up on ebay in a couple weeks at a deep discount... because no one's going to buy that... I wanted this for my permanent collection. Sigh.
If a $5 handling fee is what it takes to get you members to act; then great!
CGC is standing alone in this business of third party grading. They are in bed with all the major comic companies and dealers. Thy charge a $5 handling fee because they know as comic collectors we will pay it. Until a better company comes along CGC will continue to exploit the consumer to make more money. CGC's first business is to make money and they have proven that time and again. There are some of you who are brand loyal to them. It is understandable, given that no other third party grading company can compare to CGC. It is for that reason that CGC will keep nickel and diming us.
None can meet the standards set by CGC currently. I have talked with Daniel from PGX personally and I believe he is on the right track. He knows what needs to be done, but has yet to do it. As collectors we have everything to gain from PGX, and other third party grading companies, that meet the proper standards and challenge CGC. CGC does not have a definitive monopoly right now, but they essentially have one. When CGC is given equal competition we all stand to gain. CGC's business model is a reflection of what Americans are standing up against across the United States. Truly take a step back and look through an objective lens at the facts.
I am done with CGC. I will no longer be adding to my registry account and will no longer post. I am done with grading for now and will proverbially "put my money where my mouth is". I was up for renewal on 12/6 and refused to do it.
This journal is undoubtedly going to upset some of you. I hope so. For others I hope this journal is impetus enough to stand up and defend your hobby from injustice and greed. Make a stand; put what needs to be done above your own desires. Shake off any apathy you may carry. Be responsible. Be accountable. Just be something.
Just maybe it would be more appropriate for persons with no registered sets and who don't appear to have any participation in the registry to comment on the chat boards in Comics General and leave those of us who enjoy journaling with out the vituperative nastiness that accompanies any opinion on the chat boards alone.