Tales from the Comic Box - Rookie Adventures in Buying/Selling/Cons
6 6

809 posts in this topic

3,914 posts
3 hours ago, n2wdw said:

I follow your journal with a lot of interest.  It's fascinating to read about life on your side of the table.  Can you tell us what the set up and break down is like?  For example, how do you get all your stuff to the con?  From the con to your space?  How long it takes to set up, and then break down?  If it's a multiday con, how does the con staff make sure everyone's stuff is secure (I understand you might not want to answer this last question for security purposes).

I have yet to do a 'big'con...These have just been smaller local shows, antiques and other stuff. No  travel, overnight stays or anything like that. The one this weekend, is a 5 minute drive from my house.  The next show I do will require my first "out of town" travel so next report might be a bit more interesting.

Currently, I keep most of my stock stored at my parents as they have the space and are cool with it. Not ideal as they are half an hour away, it is a bit of a pain come show time or when I want to grab stuff for ebay auctions, etc., but it is free and no storage fees or security concerns. My next house will need to have space for a pure comic work play/work room.

  • I keep my personal collection at home though.

I pack most of my stuff up into the pick up truck with a tonal cover so it keeps out the elements and as I am not "out of town"and I don't have to worry about any overnight issues. Other items my wife takes in our SUV. 

Set up, with help, takes about two hours max from arrival to finish. This includes re-configuring tables if need be, setting up the tablecloth, putting banner up, lugging the comic boxes, arranging other items, etc. Breakdown, is a bit faster. I also have very little travel to do from parking lot to show floor for this one. 

  • One "trick" I discovered after my very first show was to label the lids of the comic boxes to correspond with the proper boxes...Some were not the same size as they were different brand or whatever so not all of them fit every box...That took extra time to sort out that first year lol

The second last local show I did was a two day show.  So, for overnight the show hired security - Students from the justice program at the local college.  At the suggestion of others, I placed the lids back on and covered the tops with sheets and chairs. The pricier stuff I just took home.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3,914 posts

Show Report:

I went a little early to help with set up, glad I did as due to unintentional planning error, would have been short a table. Was resolved quickly with no problem.

My brother was nice and showed up to help me unload the truck and even brought Timmies.   As always, my wife helped with cash and receipts.  I went with a "standard" set up again but added some extra display shelves to put up more wares.  See pics for reference.

At first I was a little concerned, seemed to be fewer of my "regulars" but day turned around quite nicely thanks to new customers. Sales Report:

First Sale: Two Wonder Woman books to a young girl who were with her parents (other vendors). I gave her a few extra freebies.

Slabs:  For those following, I have never sold a slab at one of these local shows, lots of lookers but never any buyers and I usually only bring modern "affordable" slabs. Today I sold TWO! Pretty stoked about that. Maybe I am finally educating the masses about CGC.

Sets: Set sales were down. Way down. And I brought like 6 long boxes full. This was surprising as they usually did very well.

$2 boxes:  I only had three $2 bins (or 3 for $5) and while some sold, not a lot of action. I am not sure if I should continue to build more or not. Or build more and drop them down to like a buck a book.

Treasuries:  I sold two, Captain America and a Spider-Man one.

Other:  Toys, digests and other items, while made for a good backdrop, did not sell at all this time. That was also a little surprising. Normally there is always someone who picks up one trinket or two.

Titles: People, this time, seemed to really want to DIG through the various title boxes of titles and pick out what they liked and a few raw semi and minor keys. I would have to go through receipts (too tired) to see what reigned supreme overall, but the individual comics from the various title boxes sold the most consistently and were, by far the most bang for my buck, real estate wise.  

Surprise Sales:  The old, low key Dell and Gold Key did better than expected.  A few older folks asking for other books I had but did not bring (like the Gold Key TV show based titles) and the low grade stuff was priced to move and it did. While it was not a huge % of sold items, enough of it did that I will be bringing more of this stuff to the October show.

Overall Sales Update:  I did very well for a show this size. $911.00 total in sales - Definitely worth my time, at least by my standards. My costs are pretty much the cost of the space, $125 as I live 5 min away. Organizers report about 450 people came through the show doors.

Also, I was interviewed by local paper...Not sure how that will go...The reporter seemed to think that the "Elvis vs Beatles" mag I had up was "quirky" and therefore 'noteworthy' (yes, please ignore the actual good stuff I have lol)

...I also bought a few books from a middle aged gentleman...He was passing through town but heard a "comic guy' would be at the show, so he stopped in (I did not know beforehand), so that is what is next...

 

Spring 2017 A.jpg

Spring 2017 B.jpg

Spring 2017 C.jpg

Edited by Wall-Crawler
new content

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3,914 posts

So around mid-day, a middle-aged gentleman approached the booth. Said he didn't have long but had some comics in his car, wondered if I would be interested. I said I am always interested. Now, like you, I was 99% sure it was going to be 90's drek.  To my surprise, it was most certainly NOT 90's drek...

 

First up...Some Western Pulps, Range Riders Western from May 1948 and July 1948

Western 2.jpg

Western 1.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3,914 posts

Coverless Batman #44 (there were some other roached books)...

 

Batman 44.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3,914 posts

Captain Marvel Jr. #58 1948 and Marvel Family #21 1948

 

 

 

Cap Marvel Jr..jpg

Marvel Family.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3,914 posts

Now here is where things get a little more interesting as I am sure that these are all Canadian editions...

new funnies.jpg

Kerry Drake.jpg

Superboy 126.jpg

Superman 52.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3,914 posts

Well, decided to put a book up on Comic Link Spring Featured Auction...This will only be the second book I put on auction with them...I was pleased with the results of the first one I did, so here we are...This one was a very cool one to own but I decided time to release it into wild...Now a nervous month and a half wait! 

http://www.comiclink.com/auctions/item.asp?back=%2Fauctions%2Fpreview.asp%3Fcode%3D2017may%26pg%3D3%23Item_1180674&id=1180674#detail

BandV 320 CDN.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1,784 posts

good luck! -

any idea how the Canada edition performs vs standard???

I am actually thinking of putting up my ASM 3 in that auction.... - financing more buys!!!!!!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3,914 posts
1 hour ago, W16227 said:

good luck! -

any idea how the Canada edition performs vs standard???

I am actually thinking of putting up my ASM 3 in that auction.... - financing more buys!!!!!!

The CDN edition is scarcer than the US edition and as such, tends to sell for more.  This is the 2nd highest graded copy.  

The highest graded CDN edition (CGC 9.0) recorded sale in GPA in October 2014  sold for $750.  For comparison a US CGC 9.0 sold for $316 in April 2016 .

The US edition in CGC 9.6 last sold for $1,099. No CGC 9.6 CDN sale in GPA.

Little nervous about the auction treatment as not a lot of data on the book to go by. It is very nice in hand though and I think an Archie, CDN price variant hunter or even scarce book collector would be pleased to own it ;)

Edited by Wall-Crawler

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1,784 posts

Here's hoping you have at least TWO hunters looking for it............

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3,914 posts
3 hours ago, W16227 said:

Here's hoping you have at least TWO hunters looking for it............

 

 

:wishluck::wishluck:

 

So, on another note, I sent in my payment for my booth for Sudbury Graphic Con and while I was a little disappointed to only get a smaller vendor area (I applied for a premium area but they are limited spots available), I am looking forward to doing my first show that I consider closer to a "comic con".

Also, the movie theatre in Sudbury is bigger than the one in my home town so tentative plans to take in Wonder Woman the night before :) going to make a bit of a "weekend" out of it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
27,393 posts
23 hours ago, Wall-Crawler said:

:wishluck::wishluck:

 

So, on another note, I sent in my payment for my booth for Sudbury Graphic Con and while I was a little disappointed to only get a smaller vendor area (I applied for a premium area but they are limited spots available), I am looking forward to doing my first show that I consider closer to a "comic con".

Also, the movie theatre in Sudbury is bigger than the one in my home town so tentative plans to take in Wonder Woman the night before :) going to make a bit of a "weekend" out of it.

Good luck with the Sudbury Con.  I'm assuming it's a small one day show?
 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3,914 posts
2 hours ago, thehumantorch said:

Good luck with the Sudbury Con.  I'm assuming it's a small one day show?
 

Hi Torch! Yes, it is a small one day show, Saturday June 10th.

The show is non-profit and organized by the Sudbury Library.  So far, the two ladies I have been dealing with, super pleasant and professional.  My space cost was $80 for a 10 x 10 booth area. I would have liked a premium booth (basically double the space and cost) but as it is my first show with them and spots are limited, I can understand why I got the regular booth size.

Last year I think they had 3,000 people come through the door.  My little local shows have just under 500.  Interested to see how it will go, I just wish I could bring more product.

Here is a link to the show:

http://graphiccon.com/

Here is a newspaper article on the show from last year:

http://www.thesudburystar.com/2016/06/11/graphic-con-bigger-and-better

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
27,393 posts
56 minutes ago, Wall-Crawler said:

Hi Torch! Yes, it is a small one day show, Saturday June 10th.

The show is non-profit and organized by the Sudbury Library.  So far, the two ladies I have been dealing with, super pleasant and professional.  My space cost was $80 for a 10 x 10 booth area. I would have liked a premium booth (basically double the space and cost) but as it is my first show with them and spots are limited, I can understand why I got the regular booth size.

Last year I think they had 3,000 people come through the door.  My little local shows have just under 500.  Interested to see how it will go, I just wish I could bring more product.

Here is a link to the show:

http://graphiccon.com/

Here is a newspaper article on the show from last year:

http://www.thesudburystar.com/2016/06/11/graphic-con-bigger-and-better

 

Interesting, never seen a library organizing a show before, very creative.

An organizer can only give you what's available so take the single booth this year and if you like the show tell them at the end of the show you want a double booth for next year.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3,914 posts

I went to a local Maple Syrup Festival yesterday with my wife.  

There was live music, lots of vendors set up along the main street mostly selling craft, food and of course, local maple syrup products. It was a nice Spring day so it was great to day to be outside and get some sun.

The kind of cool thing is that I ran into several customers that buy from me at the local show at a few different spots and we chatted. They asked me when next show was, what I had seen yet at the festival, etc., etc. So it was nice to be "recognized" outside of the show environment and for them to come up and just chit chat with my wife and I.

The other funny thing, was as we were walking out, I noticed a guy selling comic books...Yes, comic books at a Maple Syrup Festival...He was also selling dinky cars out of a big bin and a few other things. I decided to rummage.

I was curious as to why this guy would be selling comics at this venue.  The guy informed me he was from about 3 hours away and that it was his first time here. Apparently he has a booth at a flea market in his home town. He asked me if there were any other local shows and I told him yes, we have a few festivals coming up and what they were. I told him there is a antique show in October.  

What was really perplexing to me is that I just can't see how driving 3.5 hours north to sell comic books and a few other trinkets at a one day Maple Syrup Festival would be worth it.  The festival draws a good size crowd and yes there were kids there with their parents but they are going to the petting zoo and pony rides and bouncy castle...This is not billed as a "collectible show" in any shape or form and why I did not even consider setting up here.

I just can't see how the guy made enough money to be even remotely worthwhile.  6+ total hours drive time + gas + food...It is not like he was selling anything expensive...He would have to do a TON of volume in my mind for it to be worth it...Oh well, to each their own.  I did manage to pick up a few things pretty cheap but nothing earth shattering...The Toxin is the entire set, #1 - #6.

Deadpool 1.jpg

Deadpool 2.jpg

Deadpool 3.jpg

Deadpool 4.jpg

Toxin 1.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3,914 posts
16 hours ago, thehumantorch said:

Interesting, never seen a library organizing a show before, very creative.

An organizer can only give you what's available so take the single booth this year and if you like the show tell them at the end of the show you want a double booth for next year.

I completely agree. If I do ok at the show I am going to try to put the bug in their ear that I would like a premium booth for the following year but I think they might even be 'reserved' now for larger retailers, people with actual brick and mortar stores, but I will definitely ask.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
11,706 posts
On 4/21/2017 at 1:53 PM, Wall-Crawler said:

The CDN edition is scarcer than the US edition and as such, tends to sell for more.  This is the 2nd highest graded copy.  

The highest graded CDN edition (CGC 9.0) recorded sale in GPA in October 2014  sold for $750.  For comparison a US CGC 9.0 sold for $316 in April 2016 .

The US edition in CGC 9.6 last sold for $1,099. No CGC 9.6 CDN sale in GPA.

Little nervous about the auction treatment as not a lot of data on the book to go by. It is very nice in hand though and I think an Archie, CDN price variant hunter or even scarce book collector would be pleased to own it ;)

FYI, there is currently a Canadian version in 9.6 for sale right now on Comiclink with an outstanding bid. Hard to say but I would not like to list a book for auction with that book out there as the current bid price may be a ceiling for your book. (shrug)

http://www.comiclink.com/itemdetail.asp?back=%2Fsearch.asp%3Fwhere%3Dsell%26title%3Darchie%27s%2Bgirls%26GO%3DGO%26ItemType%3DCB&id=1022291

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
6 6