After the “what are my comics worth” question is asked, the second question I hear asked by new collectors is, “what should I collect”? My answer is always, collect what you like! There seems to be a misconception that comics are just spandex wearing Super Heroes and that they are just for kids. No way that is true. You have Super Heroes, Zombies, Vampires, Adult books, Drama, Comedy, Horror, as well as tons of others. A lot of people do not realize that a lot of they’re favorite T.V shows are based on comics. The Walking Dead, I Zombie, Riverdale, The Strain, Preacher and my favorite, Lucifer are all based on comics.
Personally, I collect first appearances of characters. Cameos and full appearances. I collect anything Deadpool and Harley Quinn. I also enjoy older sets, Mark Jeweler Variants and DC Survey Variants. All of these I will go into more details about at a later time. Some people I have met look for special dates in their lives. Like books released on the same month and year as the birth of their children, grandchildren, wives, etc.
Some collectors are completest. If they collect, for example, the original Avengers series one. They will add every book including all variants and reprints to complete the entire set. While other collectors collect the basic set, 1-whatever. I have met collectors who only collect, Golden Age books or Silver Aged books. The Bronze Age brought us the Direct editions or Newsstand editions dilemma. (Newsstand Editions are quit hot at the moment).
You may like a certain artist or writer and only collect books these creators are working on or have worked on. Maybe a particular character, or autographed books. Your interest may be in a certain run or a complete set. You may decide you want only raw books or only graded books in your collection.
Beware of the Variant cover hype. I feel compelled to warn you that a lot of people and shops will push Variant covers on you. Unless you really enjoy the Artist or the cover of a book. Do not get caught up in the hype. These are some of the most over priced books you will ever run into. Be careful.