Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Chicago Comic Con - A Fish Outta Water

This past weekend I was fortunate enough to be able to go to the Chicago Comic Con. If you know me, you know I'm a nerd, but not a comics nerd. I had ulterior motives. Gregg Hurwitz was appearing at the convention!

I introduce Gregg to everyone as a thriller writer, which he most definitely is. But did you also know he's a comic book author as well? He's written several comic book characters now and has some work coming up with The Penguin. You can see information about that work here.

I had intended to arrive at the convention on Saturday morning for Gregg's 11:00 panel on writing; however, no one informed my GPS or Google Maps about the Comic Con traffic delays! I missed the 11:00 panel, but was able to see Gregg at his signing after.

On the convention floor I felt like a fish out of water. I was constantly asking Ruth Jordan, Dana Kaye and Jon Jordan who people were supposed to be dressed as. I could identify the ones everyone knows: Ghostbusters (yes, there were Ghostbuster people), Superman, Wonder Woman, Batman, the Joker. And I even recognized Lou Ferrigno when he walked by us before breakfast on Sunday. But I discovered Steam Punk, which I thought were very cool.  There was a man with a furry yellow costume; that was weird. And I reaffirmed the fact that there are far more daring people in this world than I - holy moly, did your mother see you before you left the house looking like that? The little kids were quite cute. One who couldn't have been more than about 2 1/2 feet tall corrected his father (grandfather?) when he identified the wrong character on a t-shirt. Too funny! I didn't take any pictures on the convention floor because there was part of me that simply didn't know how to react. I was definitely a fish out of water.

Gregg moderated a panel later on Saturday, which I was able to attend. The panel consisted of two artists and a comic book writer. Essentially their discussion boiled down to something very similar to novel-writing: being successful requires high levels of talent, work ethic and luck. The talent has to come first, but there are many talented people out there. Luck does play a significant role in the comic book industry.

The other very significant part of this past weekend is the drug Jon Jordan hooked me on. She goes by the name of Jill Thompson. I have met Jill prior to this weekend, but on Saturday Jon handed me a copy of SCARY GODMOTHER, which you will all hear about later this week. Essentially all I had to do was open the front cover, and now I'm scouring about trying to find other children's comics that she's done. I. LOVE. HER. WORK!

That was my wonderful first experience with the Chicago Comic Con. While I don't think I'll be headed out to San Diego any time too soon, this was a fun experience and I'm sure it won't be my last. How about you all? Anyone been to a comic convention? Fun anecdotes to share? I'd love to hear them.

In the mean time, happy reading!


Beth F August 17, 2011 at 7:13 AM  

It does sound fun. I'm not a big enough fan or maybe it's just that I'm not knowledgeable enough to justify a trip to a Comic Con.

le0pard13 August 17, 2011 at 9:48 AM  

How very cool, Jen! I haven't seen Gregg in awhile so it was good hear about this. Thanks.

Harvee August 18, 2011 at 10:12 PM  

By the way, Jen, congrats on being a finalist for Best Crime Blog for the Anthony Awards at Boucheron this year! Wishing you the best of luck!

Jen August 20, 2011 at 8:17 PM  

Michael, you will see Gregg at Bcon! I can't wait to see YOU!!

Beth, I wouldn't have gone to a comic convention had it not been for Gregg being there, but I'm so glad I went! I'd do it again. :-)

Harvee, you are wonderful! Thank you so much. It's flattering to be on that list with websites I admire. Will you be at Bouchercon?

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