Popping My Con Cherry...

So, that was Thought Bubble 2010, then.

I'll be honest here and say that I've tended to avoid cons for a number of reasons (mainly financial and my on and off relationship with comics in general), but with me gradually making in-roads into the world, I thought it was past time to get off my arse and actually make the effort to get to at least one con. Seeing as Leeds is only about an hour and a half by train, I decided to go for Thought Bubble.

First off, I have to say big, big thanks to Stacey Whittle and Alexi Conman for letting me tag along with them - even though I proved to be the worst "tagging along person" EVAR. Problems with the tickets at the train station meant that myself and my friend missed getting the train with Stacey and Alex, and had to make our own way down, running the risk of getting lost in Leeds.

One we got there, I did have a mini-geekout when I saw Bryan Talbot having a quick cigarette outside, although I didn't go up to him and gush about my love of his work on Nemesis The Warlock way back when. Inside, though, the place was packed to the gills, and I found myself wondering what I'd let myself in for...

A wander around the hall had me pretty much going "Ooo, there's Jamie McKelvie/John Romita Jr/Emma Vieceli/Kieron Gillen/Bryan Talbot/Richard Starkings/Paul Cornell/Doug Braithwaite/etc.", but - I admit - I was too scared to go up and talk to them. But the thing that really surprised me was the cross section of people there. Maybe I've been too sucked into that whole "comics are for geeks" thing that seems to permeate people's perceptions, but I was genuinely surprised at the gender balance. But, hey, the more people that read comics the better, right?

I finally managed to meet the FutureQuake team in the flesh, and editor extraordinaire Bolt-01 gave me these:


They're prints of the covers from Something Wicked and FutureQuake, where the art was based on strips that I'd written. Something Wicked #2 by Julia Bax was based on Gifts by myself and Dunk Nimmo, while FutureQuake #9 (art by Ed Traquino) was based on Mindfields by me and Bryan Coyle. You can read both strips here. Unfortunately, though, it seems I missed meeting Dunk Nimmo, which was a bit of a shame. Maybe next time, Dunk!

I also managed to catch up with Dave and Colin of Accent UK and had a wee chat about Chosen, and I managed to grab a wee chat with Andy Bloor to talk over a potential new project (but more on that later), and got me some signed copies of The Wolfmen books:


Also managed to chat to Steve Tanner of Time Bomb Comics fame and have a quick look at The Sleepless Phoenix anthology. Also managed to grab a quick natter with Stephen Downey, but I missed catching up with Dan Hill and a whole bunch of others, which is all kinds of disappointing. Maybe next time.

All in all, I enjoyed the day, but if I'm being honest, I wasn't sure what I wanted to get out of it. Was I going down there to pitch? To seek advice from pros? To just talk to people I've worked with? I don't know. I wasn't prepared enough for it, I think. I waffled at the people I met, largely out of sheer nervousness (it's so much easier to hide behind an e-mail address and a Twitter account), and, looking back at it, I really should've relaxed more. It's a lesson learned, though.

My biggest regret of the day, though? Not being That Guy and asking the Stormtrooper that was doing the rounds a question he would've been tired of being asked: "Aren't you a little short for a Stormtrooper?"

0 Comments:

Please, feel free to leave a comment...