Wizard World Austin 2012 Wrap Up Part 2

Believe it or not, the day I could have slept in because it was quiet was the day that I had to be up the earliest! I’m telling you, I lead one glamorous life. Typical con day routine : Get up, get around, check email, check Facebook, head to the convention. I wasn’t honestly feeling breakfast so I decided to skip that and head right down to the convention center. It might have had something to do with my excitement about finally meeting Shawn and his wife, Sun (see the bakery post for more information about her) for the first time in person.

So, it was off to the convention center. Since I was anxious combined with oh crud, Saturday parking is always miserable, I actually ended up at the convention about 45 minutes before the VIPs and Press could access the show floor. Oops! That’s ok though because it gave me time to check out some of the costumed folks standing in line and chat with people.

I love that comic conventions give all of us grown ups a chance to safely play dress up. It’s something that a lot of us never outgrew and other than Halloween, we don’t really get a chance to indulge in. It’s something that I honestly want to do but haven’t gotten comfortable enough, plus, is it really professional? Oh the dilemmas! However, on Saturday, there were some fantastic costumes spanning ever genre and comic book imaginable. A lot of them I recognized and there were quite a few that I didn’t. No matter though. Everyone seemed to be having a great time and the volunteers were keeping everyone’s energy levels up while we waited to get inside.

Once inside, I headed over to see someone that was drawing free pictures based upon any one question he asked you. Unfortunately, he chose to arrive late so a lot of people didn’t even realize he was there or what he was doing. Tip to vendors..be there and ready to go when the doors open. Otherwise you give off an unprofessional vibe to those who walk by early in the day. After I received my drawing (which I will try to scan and post another day), I headed back to Artist Alley.

The one thing that I didn’t love about this convention was the odd L shaped layout*. It made it more difficult for me to remember where I had been and where I hadn’t. I have a tendency to be pretty straightforward in how I handle the vendor floor. I start in the front and work my way up and down each aisle until I get to Artist Alley and then I do that section separately. The L shape totally threw me off.

That didn’t stop me much though! I managed to get through a decent sized chunk of “the alley” before it was time to go out and meet Shawn and Sun to say hi and to pick up my baked goods. Since I wasn’t 100% sure how long it would take them to get to the convention center and park, I found a chair and relaxed while watching everyone walk by. Again, people watching at comicons is a fantastic way to waste an hour or two if you have it to waste.

There were some amazing costumes. I especially loved the girl dressed as a weeping angel. She stayed in character for ages while people took photo after photo. Sadly, the one that I took of her earlier in the day just didn’t come out good enough for me to share with you, but I can say that anyone willing to stay in character for photos is dedicated to their character and a real hit with the convention attendees.

When Shawn and Sun arrived, they were also dolled up in fun Weird West costumes. Sadly, I didn’t get to snap a picture because Sun rushed right off. I’m not sure where she headed to, but she was in a hurry to get there. Luckily, I got to talk to Shawn for a few minutes, snag a hug (and those bakery boxes) before we were both off to do our own things at the convention. For me, it was to drop off a couple of bakery boxes before heading up to the Zenescope panel.

True to form, this was the only panel that I managed to attend all weekend. One of these days, I’m going to manage to actually attend two or more. Until that day comes, Zenescope panels will always be top of my list. In this panel, Stephen and Pat filled us in on what Zenescope is up to and what we can expect. Here’s just a bit of what they shared:

• Robyn Hood issue #1, written by Pat Shand, is the 2nd highest selling issue for them, not only this year but ever.
• Wonderland will continue in 2013 with Madness of Wonderland (written by Dan Wickline). Watch for that in February or March.
• Mark Miller will be continuing work on Jungle Book.
• Pat and Raven Gregory are in the process of pitching a book with 2 male leads.
• The pilot for the Animated Series is now complete and they were in the process of pitching it to various networks.
• Zenescope works with a multitude of online sites, including Geek-o-Rama..yes, he said us out loud to the crowd!
• This was Pat’s first ever panel and he mentioned that he’d brought 20 Pat Packs* with him in the hopes of selling out at this convention.

After the panel, I walked back downstairs with Pat while Raven talked a mile a minute in his ear (via cell phone technology). If you’ve never been the 3rd party while someone is talking to Raven on the phone, I highly encourage it. I had to stop myself from laughing out loud a couple of times. Raven’s enthusiasm can be heard, for sure.

Sadly, by this point in the day, I was feeling tired and a little run down, so instead of getting back to work, I decided to finish handing out my baked goods. The folks loved getting those pretty pink boxes and it was a lot of fun to surprise them. I’m thinking that this is something we should work on continuing at other conventions. I’d love to work with small, local companies to get their name and product out there and to treat our site friends with a yummy treat.

Once I finished that, I managed to meet back up with Walter and the kids..Did I mention that they were there too? Crud, I bet I didn’t! Well, they were and the kids were full of energy and having a great time. There’s something magical about 5 and 6 year olds and their enthusiasm for life and all things magical and mysterious. We made our dinner plans and then they were off to a fantastic time at a local museum. I wish I’d gone with them. It sounded like so much fun!

For me though, there was more convention. I had to meet up with Shawn again so that I could give him his prize pack for the giveaway. With the handing off of the baked goods and running to the panel, I had completely forgotten to earlier. Luckily, he managed to spot me in the crowds and so I got another hug and he let me take this picture of him. I confess that I was having trouble with the lighting at that point, but I did want to show off how Geek-o-Rama contributors have fun too! Sadly, Sun wasn’t with him so I couldn’t get a photo of the two of them together. They made a great looking couple in their costumes.

After we parted ways again, I decided that I was worn out enough that I could safely sneak back to the hotel and relax before I met up with Walter and the kids for dinner. Turns out, I was wrong. I stopped by a few tables on the way out just to say see you tomorrow and yet again got sucked into the Zenescope table. Pat and I stood talking for a while, I sold more of their books for them and actually had someone come to the table looking for me so that they could get more information about the site. It was the first time something like that had happened and honestly, I felt a bit like a celebrity for a minute there. I can’t imagine how someone like Pat feels every time someone comes up and asks him to sign their books for them. I’m wondering though if I shouldn’t spend more time pimping other people’s books at conventions since people seem to know that the best chance of finding me is at that table…

So, my plan of leaving early was a total bust, but it did mean meeting some more awesome folks so it was worth hanging around a bit longer. From there, it was back to the hotel where I plugged my poor dead phone in and relaxed until it was time to meet up with Walter and the kids. We had a fantastic dinner together, where Ohana and I totally beat Walter and Turk at the word search (or maybe it was a tie because we all started cheating..). The kids zonked out and we ended up carrying them to the car but I hope that they had fun too.

Once back in the hotel, I glanced at the clock and groaned. Morning was going to come far too early but another good con day is always worth the lack of sleep that may come with it. Come back tomorrow for the Sunday wrap up and general summary!




* Did you find the answers to yesterday’s prize giveaway? If not, they were:

• The L Shaped Layout
• Zenescope’s list
• 20 Pat Packs
• Me (no, I didn’t say this but c’mon…that one was a gimme)

Since nobody answered any of these, this book will return to the giveaway vault for another day.

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