When building up my collection, the hardest thing for me was trying to figure out what I already have! When put under pressure in shop thinking “Shall I get it? It looks familiar, but what if I leave it and I don’t have it?” I’d end up just buying it and then go home to find that I have it about 3 or 4 times. That’s the worst!
I’m keeping tabs on my collection as the GWR (Guinness World Record’s) would – any set counts as ONE individual item, and if you have it more than once, it still only counts as one item. In total I probably have over 1000 items – because I have them twice or more. I tend to keep everything in it’s box or packaging and then open anything I have twice. To document everything I have I take photos of it and have a whole OneDrive account dedicated to it. I upload the photos and give them a brief description, so that when I find myself looking for a new Superman mug, I can search for it and see the images of the selection of mugs I already have. But when your searching for comics, it gets tricky.
I’d say 60% of my collection are comic books or graphic novels and it is so hard to remember the covers and issues…Until now. I saw a post on Instagram from a fellow Superman fan about an app that allows your to sort your comics and graphic novels – CLZ Comics.
There is a free option, so you can get a feel of what it does and decide if it works for you, but you are limited to adding 100 comics to the database (and if your anything like me… that just isn’t enough!). You basically create an account for a database, where you can also sign into online from any device, not just the app, which is always good! You do still get full usage of the app itself, you are just limited to the number of comics in your database.
Then for those die hard comic collections – like moi – there is the paid version of the app. This is a one off payment of £14.99, and hell its worth it! You have an unlimited number of entries to the database, so you can continue to collect….forever. After sifting through and adding my comic collection to the database, I found I had over 20-30 duplicate comics. And now whenever I’m buying comics – in a comic store, on eBay, carboot, wherever, I can search for the comic or scan the barcode in and it will basically tell me whether I have it or not. Not only that but it will also tell me how many series of comics I have, for example; Superman Vol 1, Superman Vol 2, The Adventures of Superman, etc. Below are a few screenshots of the app itself and how you go about adding the comics and series to the database.
1 – Your Database
This is what your database will look like, you can also change the colours – I think the default is black, but I like the blue. It will automatically break it down by series in A-Z order, but you can change the way that looks if you click the three dots on the top right corner. To add a comic, click the plus symbol in the bottom right corner, see step 2.
2 – Scanning a barcode
As mentioned you can also scan the barcode of a comic to add it to your database. This works really well, unless for whatever reason there isn’t a barcode or there is a sticker over it. I’ve also found that some barcodes work for different comics, so I’d be scanning one comic and a different one would be added to the database. So when using this be sure to double check your entries, I tend to stick to the title search where I can. Also barcode designs can be different, you will see the (+5), (+0) and (+2), this is basically asking you how many numbers are at the end of the barcode. When it recognises the barcode it will turn red.
3 – Adding by title
When adding by title you can enter bits of information, it doesn’t have to be the whole comic title – which is always handy – you can enter the first word, superhero name etc. Then click whichever one you need. There have been a few that I haven’t found, so try a few different variations and if you can’t find it that way, you can always add a new entry which may help others in the future when they are trying to find their own comics.
4 – Select the comic for your database
Once you’ve found the comic series, click it and it will bring up all of the issue numbers, find the one your after and tick the box. You can either do it individually by clicking the title or add multiples so if have issue 2, 3 and 4 you can tick those and then select add to collection. Or you can add it to your wish list, I haven’t used this feature too much at the moment, but I’m sure it will come in handy for some people. I’ve found some comics with no issue numbers on, so the picture in the icons are a lifesaver! And wallah!
Just for reference the black comic listings are those that aren’t in your collection and those in blue are the comics you have.
Let me know if you use this app, any features I’m missing out on, or what you think about it.
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