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© 2020 Monsterwax
Collecting Tracts: It's cheap, easy, & definitely different!
Collecting Chick tracts is not only fun, it's pretty easy and inexpensive (depending one how expansive you want your collection to be).
If you just want the current (in print) titles, that's very cheap and easy! If you also want all the regular out-of-print titles, that's still very doable without breaking the bank. If you want all the titles including the super rare promo tracts, that will take a lot more time and money. If you want all those plus the different variations, that's giant task that you'll probably never really finish-- but you'll have a lifetime of fun pursuing it!
Most people set out to get all the different titles. The very first thing you should do is order the all-assortment pack of tracts from Chick Publications. That will give you over half of Chick's tracts for only 16 cents each. That's over 130 tracts for around $22... What a steal!
Next, you'll want a checklist to see what out of print titles you still need. You can print out that information for free here, or you can get a detailed checklist from the Chick Tract Club with your $14 membership. You'll probably want to join the club anyway, because it provides other fun items at no extra charge, including exclusive reprints of the super rate promo tracts that would otherwise cost thousands of dollars to acquire. (Your purchase also helps maintain this website.)
Equipped with a checklist, you'll know what titles to look for. You can often find the missing tracts for sale on eBay. There's a wide span of pricing, from $1 to $5 each (typical) to $10 and $15 bucks each. Some are a lot more, but if you wait and watch, you'll usually find them cheaper with different sellers or in bigger lots of tracts. And keep this in mind: It is not uncommon for Chick to reprint old, out of print titles, allowing you pick up previously cost prohibitive tracts for just 16 cents! These tracts often have some minor changes (or variations) from the original, (so it's more cool to have the originals) but it still fills those more expensive gaps in your collection for next-to-nothing cost wise. (All it requires is patience.) How many other hobbies offer that?
If you want the more pricey out-of-print original tracts, especially the handful of permanently discontinued titles, you may want to invest in the Chick tract price guide. It's $30 postage paid, but you can save that much by not overpaying on just a few tracts. Besides, that guide also contains EVERYTHING we know about Chick tracts, including information on the full color comics, Battlecry, more humorous reviews of his tracts (not found on this site) and the backstory to various conspiracy gurus who influenced the more inflamatory tracts. It's a fun read, too.
Besides eBay, you should also check out any Christian book stores you happen to encounter. If you don't see Chick tracts, ask for them. If they don't carry them, ask them too. If they claim they are controversial or divisive, remind them that they can pick and chose what titles to carry, and that vast majority of Chick tracts are standard Gospel messages that the PC police will ignore. (Even secular collectors have a vested interest in preserving freedom of speech alive. Letting a vocal minority shut down Chick Publications by blacklisting them would be detrimental to our hobby AND our Bill of Rights.)
Also, keep a look out in public places for tracts left by evangelists. Some really great titles can be found that way, even the out of print ones. You can multiply your effectiveness by asking your friends know to watch for them and pick them up for you as well.
Lastly, you may want to organize your collection in large 3" wide, 3 ring binders with four pocket plastic sleeves. You can house a lot of tracts in very little space this way. (It's just another advantage to collecting Chick tracts compared to other collectibles.) You don't really need plastic sleeves, many people stash them in small piles or boxes, but they display well this way and are easier to organize laid out in such a manner.
Lastly, you may want to join the Chick Tract Fan Facebook page, so you get notifications about Chick related news and hear from other collectors.
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