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The Silent Majority/Minority? 
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Guru

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In the dim and distant past before there was the internet and sites like comicsuk there were an awful lot of collectors who only ever seemed to surface when they were buying something. They collected but didn't seem to want to add to the collective consciousness that others were expanding upon in their particular subject areas in magazines like Golden Fun, British Comic World and The Comic Journal and it always seemed a rather 'British' trait to me to want to collect without any fuss.
Writing to, or for, a comics magazine may well have been too much of a fuss to indulge in for many but I would presume that the internet and its constant accessibility
has lessened that sense of fuss to a marked degree. So I do wonder if the silent majority/minority are now an endangered species and that virtually everyone has emerged from the comic closet and that all that is left in the closet now are the comics themselves.
It would be interesting to know when fellow members here first took the plunge with regard to posting messages or writing letters and articles in relation to when they started collecting. For me it was four years.


Thu Jul 20, 2017 5:01 pm
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Guru

Joined: Thu Mar 27, 2008 9:15 pm
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Kashgar wrote:
It would be interesting to know when fellow members here first took the plunge with regard to posting messages or writing letters and articles in relation to when they started collecting. For me it was four years.
For me it was 1989. This was many years after I had started to collect the Big Four titles from DCT. I had taken a stall at a secondhand book fair at Pudsey Civic Hall in Yorkshire. I was selling books and comics that I had bought selectively from a whole series of local car boot sales. At some point another stallholder called Bryon Whitworth, having noticed that like him I was selling comics, wandered over for a chat. To cut a fairly long story short he eventually asked me if I would write an article about DCT's output for a magazine called The Comic Journal that he had just bought from Alan Cadwallender along with the rest of his business and good will. My illustrated article The D.C. Thomson Big 4 (1946-1955) - A Preamble was the result. It was printed in issue 19, the first one published by Bryon, over eight pages.


Thu Jul 20, 2017 7:51 pm
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I had a bad start. Around the age of 10 my sister and I both crafted letters to our favourite comics of the day. She wrote a letter about her pet goldfish which DC Thomson kindly published in their Emma comic with a large picture of my sister. I wrote an incoherent letter to Marvel UK about the history of Marvel reprints in the UK that they sensibly declined to bore their readers with.

Earl.


Thu Jul 20, 2017 9:23 pm
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Kashgar wrote:
It would be interesting to know when fellow members here first took the plunge with regard to posting messages or writing letters and articles in relation to when they started collecting. For me it was four years.


I've been reading comics since 1964, collecting / saving them since 1967, and became more seriously interested in the history of comics in 1971 when I had The Penguin Book of Comics as a Christmas present.

I sent a letter to Fantastic in 1968 when I was 9 but it was just before the comic was cancelled so it had no chance of being published. Years later, in 1976, I discovered comics fanzines (thanks to an ad in the Marvel UK weeklies) and a few months later started sending letters to various 'zines regularly. Published my first fanzine in late 1978, and wrote my first article for another 'zine (BEM) in '78 or '79. (An article on Power Comics, full of errors and suppositions I'm ashamed to admit.) Turned pro in 1983.

In short, I suppose I was never really one of the silent majority once I discovered fanzines.

I didn't have a computer until 1998 or 1999 so didn't post anything online until after that time.

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Thu Jul 20, 2017 9:42 pm
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I was one of those silent minority when I started collecting comics in 1977 - starting with 2000AD. Originally it was just keeping comics I had regular orders for. Then I discovered Norman Shaw and what a treasure trove he had (I still miss not being able to visit and see all those comics first hand).

Once Norman had gone, I went back to collecting just my regulars (though I bought a ton of Lions and Valiants for a song in a shop in Greenwich). It was with the event of the internet and the introduction of eBay did my hobby take off again.

However, I only lost my silent status when I joined this site a few years back. :D

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Thu Jul 20, 2017 10:23 pm
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Guru

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Earl wrote:
She wrote a letter about her pet goldfish which DC Thomson kindly published in their Emma comic with a large picture of my sister.
Does she still have it? If not, I should be able to supply a scan of the article as I have the full run of Emma apart from issue 28.


Thu Jul 20, 2017 10:40 pm
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When I discovered comics fanzines in the early 1970s my first contributions tended to take the form of artwork rather than articles. In some ways I think the internet has failed to provide a comparable venue for aspiring fan artists: back in the day there was nothing more exciting than seeing my own interpretations of Spider-Man, Batman, Rip Hunter, Noggin the Nog, etc. in print for the first time!


Fri Jul 21, 2017 1:22 am
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Phoenix wrote:
Earl wrote:
She wrote a letter about her pet goldfish which DC Thomson kindly published in their Emma comic with a large picture of my sister.
Does she still have it? If not, I should be able to supply a scan of the article as I have the full run of Emma apart from issue 28.


That's a kind offer but she does still have it and I was able to get it as well in more recent years off ebay. I have a small collection of Emma comics myself. I like the short run Thomson series like Emma, Buddy and Spike and I like most girls comics in general.

Earl.


Fri Jul 21, 2017 9:57 am
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Kashgar wrote:
In the dim and distant past before there was the internet and sites like comicsuk there were an awful lot of collectors who only ever seemed to surface when they were buying something. They collected but didn't seem to want to add to the collective consciousness that others were expanding upon in their particular subject areas in magazines like Golden Fun, British Comic World and The Comic Journal and it always seemed a rather 'British' trait to me to want to collect without any fuss.
Writing to, or for, a comics magazine may well have been too much of a fuss to indulge in for many but I would presume that the internet and its constant accessibility
has lessened that sense of fuss to a marked degree. So I do wonder if the silent majority/minority are now an endangered species and that virtually everyone has emerged from the comic closet and that all that is left in the closet now are the comics themselves.
It would be interesting to know when fellow members here first took the plunge with regard to posting messages or writing letters and articles in relation to when they started collecting. For me it was four years.



For me, it was here and only a couple of years ago.


Fri Jul 21, 2017 11:20 am
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Mr Valeera
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For me, it was starting on this site and 26pigs. Then I got a few articles published in Crikey! Then it was a couple of articles for Down The Tubes and now I run my wee blog and try to add to the comics knowledge out there.

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Fri Jul 21, 2017 2:58 pm
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I started reading comics around mid '50's, so a long career on the word balloon front. I had no clue about comic fandom till I attended the first Glasgow comic con/mart in the '80's. Even then, I met fellow fans and all we did was chat amongst ourselves, read and swap comics. Finally a group of us got together in a pub in Glasgow, but we still only chatted amongst ourselves. I didn't know there was a " collective consciousness". This is well before the availability of the internet to the hordes. But when a friend declared he was going to publish a fanzine, that started me and some others in writing about comics. It was also an excuse to chuck my opinions and biases at our poor readers. That was aka. I wrote articles and editorials for the 'zine and edited a couple of issues, but editing was much harder than running off reviews and shouting opinions at the reader.
I branched out a bit and wrote a couple of articles for convention mags, was part of a tv panel discussing Batman - this was at the time of Return of The Dark Night - gave talks to libraries and various groups. But when my wife and I finally decided to embrace technology and buy a computer, that's when I found the big world of fandom and joined some sites and blogs, CB+; DCM; a Phantom site, obviously; this site and others and was able to foist my opinions, and occasionally, knowledge onto an unsuspecting world.
With the advent of the internet and all its fan sites and hosting platforms, I'm not sure that even the comics ares till in the closet :D


Fri Jul 21, 2017 8:28 pm
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I started reading comic in the early eighties, and soon found after primary school that not many read comics after that age, certainly where I live in rural Ireland. Older comics were very hard to come by so the discovery of Norman Shaw and Conquistador mail order was a godsend. Norman had a very trusting and unusual way of processing his orders. I remember saying that Id like some of the original Eagles, (I was probably 10 of 11) and he sent them without payment, and I would then send payment by a Bank Draft.

Speakeasy was next and then Comic International, to which I sent a few letters.
The article's in Warrior and the Marvel UK weeklies sparked my interest in the 'behind the scenes' workings of comics, but it wasn't until Eagle Flies Again that I found that there were people with similar interests, mainly 70's and 80's IPC adventure comic's. I helped Titan with some research, and with the demise of EFA I though I'd have a go and so far have published three Comic Archives, featuring articles and interviews about my favourite comics.
I have another very nearly ready and two in the planning stage.

BTW Phoenix, do you have any idea of where any back issues of The Comic Journal can be sourced? I'd love to have a read.

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Fri Jul 21, 2017 9:34 pm
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Guru

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David McDonald wrote:
BTW Phoenix, do you have any idea of where any back issues of The Comic Journal can be sourced? I'd love to have a read.
I'm afraid not, David, sorry. Bryon Whitworth and I lost touch when he sold his business and bought a property in France. He then went over with his wife Winifred to settle there. He does trade on eBay from time to time but offhand I can't recall his username. Maybe some other member will be more helpful. In the meantime you could try an eBay search for The Comic Journal, and if the search doesn't pan out just save the search. That way if any come up in the future you will be alerted to that fact. Another thing occurs to me. Richard S was looking for issues a while back if memory serves. I have met him, and he is a genuinely nice guy. If I were you I would PM him and let him know what you are looking for. He might just have some useful suggestions to make.


Sat Jul 22, 2017 12:48 am
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David, and anyone else who is interested, CB+ has 6 issues of The Illustrated Comic Journal, if that is what you're looking for. Here
http://comicbookplus.com/?cid=2278

Check the uploader's name.


Sat Jul 22, 2017 7:41 am
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Guru

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Phoenix wrote:
Bryon Whitworth and I lost touch when he sold his business
For what it's worth I don't believe that David Mirfin, who bought Bryon Whitworth's business from him, had any interest in producing more issues of The Illustrated Comic Journal after issue 39, the final one produced by Bryon (the word Illustrated had been added by Bryon with issue 29). In the letter with which he introduced himself and his partner, Evelyne Ladusch, to subscribers, David announced that the price per issue would rise immediately from £6 to £15 from issue 40. He went on to offer a monochrome version of 40 for £6. It was just words because issue 40 never appeared. I don't think it even got to a rough draft stage because had it done so Steve Holland and I, as Technical Advisers, would presumably have been sent that to be corrected. In my opinion David had just wanted the rights to the books that Bryon had been publishing. The list included The Comet Collectors Guide, Thriller Picture Library Index, Dandy Monster Index, Girls Own Guide, Classics Illustrated Collector(s) Guide, The Topper Index, The Fleetway Companion, and I.D. Guide To D.C. Thomson Annuals. Fill in your own apostrophes. I haven't checked to see whether these volumes are still available from David, or indeed from anybody else. Perhaps some other member could find out for us as I haven't had my breakfast yet.


Sat Jul 22, 2017 10:22 am
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