Letters to Holly

Monday, May 23

Fanaticon 2: The Fanaticonning

But first this quick note: Some one found my cooking site by Googling "accursed reed richards." Vunderbar.

The convention is now two days behind me, and I'm still smiling. I'm exhausted and sore and reeling, but I'm tickled with the experience. It was much larger than last year, and I think my table location was better. I sold a ton of comics. I made a ton of money. I drew a lot of cards. And I saw lots of costumes. My Flickr set is here.

All the daunting elements were figments. They came and went and left me unscathed.  Loading was easy. Setting up was easy. Turns out that I didn't feel the need to pee until hour eight, and I held out until hour nine when the show was over. I was brought food by a volunteer (pizza and Catwoman respectively). I sold a card before the sho started, and I sold another right before it closed.

To my relief and glee, my sales pitch for eMMA proved irresistible: This is our female robot mixed cage fighter who inadvertently gets her fight league shut down, and she has to get the title back from a gold-medal winning Olympic werewolf wrestler. It got laughs, and it made sales.

Some details:
  • Three stores offered to carry my book in their stores, and that's a stunning option I hadn't fully considered. Of course I'll do it. 
  • One crazy woman asked me if I would help her do New Yorker-style artwork for a project. I call her crazy because she made a beeline for my open portfolio pages and said flatly "I don't care about comics" before explaining her desire to find an artists. I offered my card, but I'll tell you now there's no fucking way I'm gonna jump in that. She had crazy eyes, crazy hair, and I'm gonna guess crazy knees as well. 
  • Two acquaintances from an online forum stopped by.
  • People complained of the heat, but I was comfortable behind my table. 
  • Your Sister and sidekick visited very shortly as the crowd and heat wore them down.
  • Two different parties came up with e genius idea: Instead of drawing a character on a sketch card, why not draw them as heroes. I took pics with my camera and put masks on them. It makes for a good idea for next year. For almost all the cards, I explained that I would draw it up as they wandered a bit and returned a few minutes later. They accepted happily, except for the last customer who asked to sit and watch me draw. She did, and we chatted about Plastic Man as I drew him.
  • One of the volunteers brought me a cupcake as the convention wound down. She mentioned her store could carry my comics as I was walking out the door, boxes in my arms. We said bye, and she absent-mindedly told me her name was Emma. I set down the boxes, said "well, in that case ... ," and gave her a copy of eMMA. She was delighted. How better could my day have ended? What more could I ask? (The deputy slept all Saturday night. Flawless victory.)
I'm glad this was a one-day event. If I tried this at, say, Charlotte's three-day party, I'd be dead and gone. But I might consider sharing a table there next year. I might at that. I'm already writing the sequel comic, combining both hero books. It threatens to be huge.

I attended the museum party the night before and immediately regretted not wearing a proper costume. I had a Fantastic Four shirt, and my hair would suggest Mister Fantastic, but no one seemed to put it together. To costumed attendees the next day said they saw me there and identified my costume. I knew nobody and left a little after nine; I promised Your Sister I'd be home by ten. I don't know how the auction went. I'll call the museum later this week to check on my piece. If it didn't sell, do I get it back?

Pictures of the Day
From the Citizen-Times comes a picture of me selling sketch cards to the sons of a friend. The guy in the white shirt is about to buy the monster comic for his grandson. The crowd was that heavy at my table virtually all day.

You can see the convention layout below. My table pops up at 2:56.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

and thanks for your status updates throughout the day. I felt like I was hovering in the vacinity of the show rather than studying for the grander part of the day.