I'm back from La-La-Land.
Traveling to conventions, especially alone (as the case may be sometimes for me), is kind of like stepping into a giant blender... you wake up early one morning to catch a flight, and things start moving really fast.
You lug your luggage (loaded to bear with show supplies), check bags, make flights, catch cabs or shuttles, check into hotels, drag your luggage to the con hall, check in, find your space, set up, and get it all done in time for the show. All in the space of a few hours.
Some times there's connecting flights, sometimes there's lines at the con to get your credentials/etc, sometimes there's items shipped to your hotel to wrangle, rental cars, valets, cell phones to keep hold of, information to have handy...
the list goes on and on...
Then the show starts, bam!
You meet your neighbors, catch up with friends, network, fans start to trickle, or sometimes rush in, sales begin, questions, sketches, more networking, panels, more friends, lots of new friends, more networking, more fans, more sketches.
You get the picture.
This goes on for 1 to 5 days, with varying levels of speed and sound (man the PA was all kinds of f'd up in LA). Sometimes things come to a crashing halt, artist alley gets no traffic, your aisle placement may be at the back and get very few people for a while. It messes with your mind, you become almost bi-polar, riding high on the peaks, and ebbing low on the valleys.
Then it's over, time to pack up and make another flight, lug more luggage, wrangle more transportation, etc, etc
It's a 2 hour flight from LA to Portland, but it took over 6 hours to get home, just to give an example of all the drawn out steps.
It's a marathon... (speaking of marathons... how bout that LA marathon going by Wizard World on Sunday? Cool cool!!! Nothin' like holding a con at the center point of an event that shuts down the city!).
It's a marathon.
But you know what?
Sure it's a challenge of the body and spirit.
Sure it can be difficult, or frustrating at times, but it's ultimately exciting, and rewarding.
Meeting fans, making new fans, talking to fans about your book, doing sketches for them, meeting fellow creators (aspiring and pro alike), making friends, making contacts, meeting retailers, seeing celebrities (comic or Hollywood), and taking in the spectacle that is a comic book pop culture event (dj's spinning on 2 level booths, karate chicks performing, camera crews filming).
It's a blast!! A real fucking blast!
I love it!
Oh, and oftentimes, being a creator at a comic show is a lot like being locked in a candy store... you're surrounded by all of this stuff you love 24/7, only problem is, it's like you have diabetes! You can't take it all in, that's not why you're there. You've got a long list of things to accomplish, and checking out the con floor is last on the list. Damn!
The consensus on the floor for the 2006 Wizard World LA con was that it was generally underwhelming, not too heavily attended (did I mention the marathon?), and not too profitable. Lucky for me it was perhaps my best con yet! I debuted issue 2 at the show, and sold lots of copies (people seem to really like the Edward Pun variant!), and continued to sell many copies of the 2006 sketchbook (less than 10 remain, looks like I'll have to print up something new, just for SDCC) and issue number 1.
I had a great show, and want to thank every one who stopped by!
It was a pleasure meeting and talking with everyone who stopped by my table!!
And a big thanks to my pal Javier for helping me out on Saturday and taking me to little Tokyo. It was good times! (alas, the manga bookstore was already closed) How can you beat talking about the craft, industry, and love of comics into the early AM at a Japanese kareoke bar, after a kickin day at the show?! (El Muerto number 3 is looking really good btw! I got a peek at the in process pages over dinner. Check out the advance of it at APE Con next month!)
Whoops, and how can I forget the rain?!?
I've done WWLA 2 years in a row, and it's rained both times!
What's up with that?!
And let me just tell you, from all to real, all too funny experience, it's very true about Los Angelino's in the rain... Let me just say, HA!
Next year it better be sunny!
Now it's only 2 weeks to the big NW show, Emerald City Comic Con on April 1st and 2nd. This time, the wife and chihuahua are going, and we have a nice hotel with extra nights. So it should be a much more relaxing affair.
See you at the shows!!