Oh hey, it's almost the first Saturday in May again, and you know what that means: it's Free Comic Book Day. This annual celebration is exactly what it sounds like: comic book stores celebrate their love of the genre by sharing some of the best books of the year totally for free. Stores across the U.S. and beyond are joining in on Saturday May 7 — so whether you're a comic book super-fan or a first-time comic book reader, you should head to your local indie comic book store this weekend.
But which comic books can you get for free? You can't just grab any old comic from the rack: there's an official list of free books that will be available. This year, the selection ranges from Bob's Burgers to Doctor Who to Suicide Squad — so whatever type of reader you are, you're bound to find a comic book that you love. But how are you supposed to choose just one?
Each store will have their own policy on how many comic books you're allowed — and of course, it depends on how busy the store has been that day, too. Some stores may let you take a few, but there are no guarantees. But don't panic, comic book lovers, there are ways to get your hands on a whole selection — you've just gotta plan ahead.
Plan your route
Check out the Free Comic Book Day store locator to double check which stores are participating. If you plan your route carefully, you can hit a bunch of stores all in one day — getting a different free comic book at each one.
Get the details
Call up your local comic book store and ask what their policy is. It's good to know which stores are planning to hand out extra comic books, so you can make sure to hit those ones first.
Set that morning alarm
All good things come to an end, and all supplies of comic books eventually run out. If you're going to do this thing properly, you've got to get yourself out of bed and get in line.
Hitting a ton of stores on Free Comic Book Day can involve a lot of waiting in line. Hosting a mini-picnic will make all that standing around way more fun.
Charge your phone — and get social
Free Comic Book Day has its own Facebook page, as well as hashtags on Twitter and Instagram (#FCBD2016). Keep refreshing that timeline; if one store runs out, you're going to want to update your schedule.
I also recommend wearing a comic book-inspired T-shirt, too. That might not increase your chances of getting extra free comic books — but doesn't it make the whole day even more fun?!