This last weekend I was in Seattle for the Emerald City Comic-Con and I wanted to share some of the amazing highlights of the trip. This convention was by far, the best and most surreal convention experience I have had. Let me explain.
It all started with a crazy road trip for 20+ hours to pick up my brother in Oregon and make it just in time to set up in a city I’ve never been before with just a few hours to check into my hotel and take a shower before the show started. That in itself was crazy. But we made it and set up the booth. Mike Yamada and his wife Victoria Ying shared a corner booth with us too. If you haven’t seen their work you really should check it out. They are both amazingly talented.
The show opened and the self doubt hit me like a ton of bricks. Especially when the first 30 minutes we had no interested candidates to purchase anything at my booth. I started to really sweat because I dragged my brother all the way here and paid lots of money to be in an unfamiliar audience who didn’t seem to be interested. You could probably see it on my face but then suddenly a fan ran up to the booth in excitement and we talked for about 15 minutes. In that time two other fans approached and complimented me on my book. This really helped calm my nerves but I still wasn’t selling anythi– oh wait, a random attendee just came up out of the blue while I was talking to fans and throw down some cold hard cash. I’m in.
What was once crickets became a continuous stream of interest for my book and prints. About 2 hours in I turned to my brother realizing that this was probably the easiest crowd that I have ever sold to. By the end of the day we had it down and were averaging a book sold every 15 minutes mixed with lots of other little sales and conversation.
The first day was finished and as we walked out into the lobby I was greeted by Royden Lepp the talented writer and artist behind the Archaia book titled Rust. (order from this link and I get a small cut) We ended up going out to dinner with him and his wife and we had a blast. I’m so glad I got a chance to get to know them because they are such great people. Check out his book if you have a chance. It’s one of the few graphic novels that I’ve purchased in the last few years and I love it.
Saturday morning we rolled into the con and I picked up some amazing crepes from a little crepe shop on the street. Talk about the most yummy crepes I’ve ever eaten. That’s a whole post in itself. :)
The convention opened to shouts as attendees ran past to get into autograph lines. We sat back and waited for the first 30 minutes this time instead of worrying about selling books. Soon the customers started wondering by and my brother and I ended up selling 45 copies of reMIND that day alone. It was the most books I ever sold in one day at a con.
In the middle of the day Mleiv stopped by to say hi and gave me some delicious muffins! She does an amazing webcomic called The Locked Maze that you really should see. I think I was in a daze when she came by and I didn’t quite realize it was her until towards the end of our conversation. So, thanks Mleiv for the yummy muffins! Now everyone go and check out her amazing looking comic!
Travis Hanson of The Bean had set up a panel to talk about Kickstarter and he invited me to be part of it. I had no idea what to expect but I wanted to do a panel eventually so I jumped on the opportunity. I was crazy nervous. I was even more nervous when I saw the massive line stretching the length of the convention to get into the panel. The doors opened and we went into a huge room that quickly filled with over 140 people. It reached the room limit and they turned away everyone else. Gulp.
Travis lead the show and we had a fun time discussing what makes a good Kickstarter for about an hour. Thanks Trav, for letting me be a part of your amazing panel! I didn’t get any pictures so if anyone has one that they want to share then I’d love to post it here.
Go check out Trav’s webcomic, The Bean now!
After the panel was finished, I went back to my booth and my brother had sold out of all my signed copies of reMIND that I left for him. He also had two people waiting there for me. And that’s when Ed showed up…
This is Ed.
On Friday, he came by my booth wearing an “I’ve seen the Lizard Man” shirt, which was cool enough to make me snap a picture. But then he showed me his new tattoo.
Yep, that is a brand new tattoo of Victuals on his arm. I might have to mark Ed down as my biggest fan now. We talked for quite a bit and he’s a super nice guy with a big laugh. Thanks Ed, for making this show unforgettable!
The day finished great and we ended up eating dinner with Jeremy Barlow (who edited reMIND) and his friends (who I don’t know their websites or their full names) (and now I feel like a total looser because of) (Help Jeremy!) (awkward pause)
One of the other highlights of the show was meeting Shari Chankhamma who helped me color several pages of Volume 2. I love her art and now I know that she is also a very nice person as well. :) She brought me a bunch of cool gifts and stopped by several times just to hang out. Go check out here work here and follow her on twitter here
@sharihes. Here is one of her drawings.
I meet tons of other cool people and publishers and friends. I talked with printers, publishers and producers interested in reMIND. I was part of another cool panel on Small Press with a bunch of other cool people. Here’s a picture that Drew Pocza took of the panel. He was on the panel too.
The panel was hosted by Corrosive Comics: Shawn Cruz, AnnMore Grove and Micah Baker
Also on the panel were:
The rest of the show went great and I sold 99 copies of reMIND, all the plushes that I brought, all my prints and lots of other random things. We packed up and drove back to my brothers house that night. Then the next day I drove back home to Los Angeles. Exhausted.
I already paid for a booth for next year because this was such a great experience. Thank you to everyone who came out to see me and the fun conversations! See you there next year!