There’s a quote I run across every now and then, attributed to William Morris: “Have nothing in your house which you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful.” I like it a lot, because it’s a pretty solid guideline to use when decluttering or trying to choose what to acquire.
I applied it a few years ago to my tshirts (I have a tragically enormous collection of them, most of which I do not wear), but in a somewhat different form: “Buy only those tshirts which make you say holy shit that is amazing.”
Since then I’ve done the same with books (I did a purge of my to-read shelf and only kept books I actually still wanted to read, and I only buy books that make me say holy shit I want to read that right now).
And now I’m looking at expanding it to comics.
A couple years ago I walked into my local comic shop and asked if they had Chris Hastings’ Fear Itself title (Deadpool’s story in the huge Fear Itself crossover). They did, and soon they introduced me to a TON of other comics, and to the idea of having a subscription to a comic.
Well, now I have a SERIOUSLY long subscription list at my local shop, and it has come to my attention that I am not actively psyched about half the titles I’m buying. WTF, self?
So, new rule for comics: if seeing it in my stack of subscriptions isn’t holy shit I can’t wait to read this, I’m dropping it. Even if I feel kind of guilty or like a bad fan or whatever. It makes no sense to buy non-useful stuff I’m not excited about (I love comics, but they aren’t useful the way a can opener is. I don’t have to be psyched about a can opener to buy it, I just need to need a can opener).
On the bright side, every time I apply the “only things that make me say holy shit” rule, it improves the awesome:meh ratio of stuff in my immediate vicinity. That improves my general life experience as I live day to day, and that is awesome.
Holy shit is it awesome.