Blog No. 108
Last weekend was Windsor’s Christmas Comic Con. It was both my first time ever at a con and the first time I was at a table at any event (other than for work I suppose). No, that’s a lie. I did help my brother’s band once at a music festival in St. Catharines, but I was a small part of a larger team then. Last weekend I was helping Christian with his table (but really I think he just wanted me to help him carry things). It was the two of us, his book (which you should buy if you haven’t yet) and some of his personal collection of comics and horror movies. The main goal was to sell as many copies of his book as we could. The comics and movies were bait and fodder to help pay for the cost of the table. They helped, but it turned out they weren’t necessary. With the large number of connoisseurs, and my shilling skills, he made enough with books sales to cover the costs. I didn’t read the fine print though. My cut is a coffee.
It was a long day, but the time passed quickly. The event probably wasn’t the scale of con that you’ve seen before. Some, like New York and San Diego, can fill entire convention centers and spill out to surrounding buildings. Windsor’s filled a large room at the Cleary (St Clair Center for the Performing Arts) and spilled out into the foyer. It was packed with tables, displays, a stage and screen, and people, though. I couldn’t guess at the number (I’ve never been good at estimation) but it started around 11am and didn’t slow down until after 4pm. Some of the costumes were amazing and everyone from the elderly (though fewer) to children (also fewer) was represented. We saw people multiple times (I think they were waiting for the costume contest) and ran into a few people we know (a few from Writers on Windsor and Drink and Draw). So the people watching was excellent. I would have probably been busy and content on my own, but getting to share the duties with Christian (and chat for most of the day) was a nice bonus.
The worst part of the day was that I had nothing to offer. I helped, sold a few books, but I didn’t have a book of my own to sell. I can’t fault Christian for it. He had the stories and he was eager to get them published. He is working hard to sell them too. He deserves the attention and the credit. It would have been really nice to have my first book at the table too. I’m working on it, and the day was another kick in the ass (I’ll take as many as I can get). Christian and I are diligently working on our collection and I’m still kicking around a book of my own. In the new year we are going to try to do novels again. There is a lot on the horizon, but it’s going to take lots of work too.
Next Con I hope we’ll have an Adventure Worlds table. We learned a lot from some of the tables around us. We weren’t ready to invest too much in the first even where the only book was Christians first. Next time we’ll have signs, loot, new cards, and more books. From what I saw at the Christmas Con, our prospects fit right in the middle. Some people had huge displays with dozens of products, shelves, racks, huge signs, and monitors. Others just set up a table and some stuff. I think there has to be a balance between lugging everything in (and taking up so much space) and having a presence. I’m excited to get started and find what works for us. It’s going to cost something, but from the one event I’ve been a part of, it seems like it’ll be worth it. Plus it’s cool to have a nice setup and to find some new readers. I think we’ll be at the next one.