1. Never buy your textbooks. Technically, this is true like 9/10 times. It would be more correct to say “never buy your textbooks at the campus bookstore.” Some books you may need for sequential classes, like A&P 1 and 2, for example. In that case, Amazon is a great place if you need to buy them (renting, too!). Prime shipping ($50 for college students) means you can get them, usually, in 2 days. Chegg is another place you can check out, but I’ve always found the prices to be cheapest on Amazon. You can also try BookFinder, TextSurf, or BigWords for comparisons on good deals.
2. Always go for the penultimate edition, when possible. Grab the 6th instead of the 7th. Cheaper, usually the same material. Sometimes, they’ll move things around or add in pictures. Maybe they clarified a few sentences. Generally, they don’t change and the textbooks companies are looking to get more money. You can also look up lists of what has changed between the editions with some creative Googling. Always ask your professor or instructor if the older edition is OK. Never hurts to be sorry! I would also advise getting a used copy whenever possible.
3. Grab the e-book when you can. 99% of the time these are cheaper, and you don’t have to carry a huge textbook, or multiple textbooks, to class! Slap them into your laptop, Kindle, iPad, tablet, or even your phone. Whatever you’ve got. I recommend Amazon again. Ask your professor about their technology policy and if e-books are OK. Most of the time, yes. I don’t think I have had any professors tell me they would not allow e-books.
4. If you have to buy, see if a classmate or friend will go 50/50 with you, or let you borrow their old copy. Friend (you have one or two, right?!) took the class last semester? Did they buy their book? Ask if you can “rent” or buy it from them! Maybe someone else in the class is having trouble paying for their books, too. Offer to pay for half the book and work out a schedule for when you both can use it. Or, if it comes with online access, one person can take the e-book and one person can take the physical book.
5. If you absolutely must buy a book by yourself, sell it as soon as you can. Textbook editions change from year to year (because the companies suck! and everyone wants your money). Think of it as a hot potato as soon as you’re finished with it. If the bookstore won’t buy it back - which happens when they have too many or it’s an old edition - try posting a flyer, dropping by old professors’ offices or classes, and even asking if they’ll see if any of their students are looking to buy the textbook at a reduced rate. Try Craigslist (be careful) or even Facebook groups for your area/school.
6. Finally, “magic!" I call this "magic.” Although I will not give you the exact means on where to find pirated books (because I don’t know where they are, and I don’t do that at all…of course not! ;) .) there are resources out there. This is the cheapest option, obviously. Sometimes there are problems, or so I’ve heard…“.PDFs suck, or there are no seeders. Or maybe an e-book just doesn’t exist (check Amazon if you’re looking to see if there is an e-book - they will most likely have it)."
Additionally: for the love of god, please wait until you have your first class before you go and rent/buy a textbook. Sometimes you won’t even need it, and, although the professor can’t or really shouldn’t tell you that (money-grubbing colleges don’t particularly like that, as I’m sure you can tell), they may hint to it. If they don’t explicitly state you need the textbook, you may be fine without it. Never hesitate to reach out to them if you are having financial trouble (unless they are total assholes!). They may have a solution or could let you borrow a book.
To give you an example of what these tips have done, I spent about $500 my first semester of college buying my books. For 4 classes. Never again. This semester, I paid a whopping $58 for a book that was not in e-book form. I could have gotten the 8th edition for cheaper, but "all the page numbers were different,” according to my professor. I figured I could spare the expense. ;)
By the way, I just sold back 2 of those books I bought - 1 from the first semester and 1 from another time when I had to get the book, for about $60 bucks on Amazon. At least I made something from it. If you have any textbooks sitting around your house, and they’re not too old, you may be able to sell them back to Amazon, provided they’re in good condition.
here is a short comic i drew for my sequential art class last week! the prompt was “a person emerges from a forest, climbs a hill, enters a building, and has an encounter” so i was like ok i like monster girls and i like badass little kids and i especially like those two things together, lets go
the bug-alien girl’s name is “portia”, the kid is called “scruff”
Class assignment having to do with a “missed connection” advert! We picked from a provided selection of real “missed connection” posts and made an illustration based on it. I did a 1-pg comic because of course I did.
This is for a perspective assignment in my Drawing for Sequential Art class. Urban perspective is absolutely grueling, but I somehow survived and am pleased with the results! I’ve never really tried this before.
It’s not as clean as it could be, but it’s not meant to be inked anyway so I wasn’t about to put in even more extra work for it.
My final for my Intro to Sequential class! A lot of blood, sweat, and tears (mostly sweat and tears) went into making this as it is originally conceived for print as a mini-comic! Which means a lot of fighting w/ Indesign and making sure I had enough copies to share w/ the class and just learning how to independently print for cons and stuff! There’s a couple more pages that are omitted here, (a dedication page and two pages of lil’ bios as well as a back-cover) but I’ll submit the last 3 separately!
The pages are really huge file-wise, so it may be a little weird to read if you open them up in separate tabs! Just a warning!