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San Diego – Saturday and Sunday

It’s like running a marathon. Really. Complete with the blisters and incredible muscle pain the following morning.

Saturday. Started with a meeting. Headed to the con floor and Oni Press for the first signing of the day. Met up with Southworth at the booth, gave out the 8-page Stumptown story in both large and small editions (I lack pictures; the large version was 8 1/2 x 11, folded; small version was…very small, came in an evidence envelope with a little magnifying glass so you could actually read it). Gave out many posters. Signed many items. Had a very nice time.

Went to the DC signing, sat with JG Jones and Grant on one side, and Cranky Old Fart Keith Giffen on the other. Keith was trying to eat his lunch while signing. He was cranky and funny and, after the fourteenth time someone asked me for a sketch of Your-Favorite-Character-Here, made me a sign that said, “Can’t Draw. Can Barely Write.” I’m getting him back, though. Apparently, he has a pathological fear of eating hot dogs in public, so I’m telling everyone about it. Met Keith’s wife, who’s fantastic, and clearly long-suffering. He rolls over like a puppy for her. It’s cute.

Departed the signing to run upstairs for the DC Universe Panel. Of the three DC panels I participated in this con, this was the most sedate of them, to the point of being, almost, aimless. Was asked about projects I’m still not allowed to talk about. Sat between the Old Coot Keith and Brad Meltzer. Learned the new answer to any question about the death of a DCU character is, “need more Black Lanterns.”

Went to lunch following with Geoff, DiDio, Jann Jones, and Ian Satler. Discussed The Future and the Projects to go with it. Was offered two titles. One of them I’m intrigued by; the other I passed on. Tromped back to the convention hall and missed a scheduled meeting with James Robinson, but managed another impromptu one with Michael Siglain, where we further discussed another of the projects I’m not allowed to talk about. Back to Oni Press, where Southworth and I did a fairly long interview with the folks from iFanboy. No idea when it’ll run, but the substance was almost entirely Stumptown related.

Missed the Oni Press panel in order to reach the Gays in Comics panel on time. Hands down the best panel experience I had of the convention (though the Final Crisis panel ran a close second). Got to see Axel Alonso, who I haven’t actually spoken with in person for years, as well as Ariel Schrag, who beats out Axel in that I haven’t spoken with her for literally a decade (and that should tell you how long I’ve been coming to this con). Great audience, great questions, and Andy Mangels did his usual fantastic job of running the panel. Only regret was that I didn’t actually get to talk to Patty Jeres after, as I had to duck out to make it to dinner.

Attended dinner with a flock of writers, staggered back to the hotel to see my wife for the first time that day around 11ish. Met up with Jen, Andrew, and Xtie, then went down to the bar in search of my brother; failed, found him via text messaging, and spent an hour actually sitting down and talking, which was my only real opportunity to spend time with him the entire show. Collapsed around two in the morning.

Sunday.

Saw Jen off to Fresno in search of our children, then headed to DC for a signing. Sat with Philip Tan and Nicola (Happy Birthday!) Scott, and again explained to people that I didn’t do sketches, not because I was an asshole, but rather because my ability to do so is nonexistent.

Philip Tan, by the way, is still fresh enough at this whole convention-signing thing that each and every person who asked got a sketch from him. Not just a headshot, either, but full body sketches. The guy is, possibly, one of the sweetest, hardest working artists I’ve ever met.

Left DC for Oni to check in with the crew, then back to DC for an interview with a French publication I never got the name of. Interview lasted about 45 minutes, and covered a lot of ground. Managed to make my way through it without having to use any of my very poor French. The interview was filmed, so I imagine it’ll surface online somewhere, someday.

Went from the interview to the Abrams booth, where I met up with Charlie Kochman. Charlie used to be at DC, back when I first started there, and he was my editor on the Batman: No Man’s Land novel. He is a great, great guy, and it was great to be able to catch up, finally.

Found Andrew and Xtie, walked with them back to the Hyatt, where we parted company so they could return to LA, and I could return to my room and nurse my wounds.

Officially, for me, the convention is over. Tonight I’ve got the annual Eddie Berganza End of the Convention dinner, and that is the extent of my plans.

Well, that and sleeping.

Heading home tomorrow.

19 Responses to San Diego – Saturday and Sunday

  1. signifier

    Wow. You deserve the sleep, all right!

    BTW: mysterious artwork for some kinda mysterious project at the Naked Fat Rave table looked PHENOMENAL. But you knew that.

  2. admin

    I have no idea what you’re talking about.

  3. gregmce

    Actually, as someone who runs marathons, I think it is actually worse than running a marathon. When I used to be the head of the Small Press Expo I compared the two with SPX being the tougher of the two, and based on schedules like yours, I think you were in the same boat.

    If nothing else, four hours (or so) later you’re done with a marathon. Not four days later! Oof.

    I think all comic creators should book themselves an hour-long massage upon returning home from San Diego.

  4. edkaye

    That definitely sounds like it was a whirlwind weekend. Keith Giffen sounds like he would be hilarious to meet in person. Snarky, but funny :) I just picked up the first issue of Ambush Bug today, so I am looking forward to reading that.

    I didn’t know there was a “gays in comics” panel. No one seems to have reported on that, which is a shame really.

    I hope you are able to relax a bit before you have to start frantically hitting deadlines again :)

    Edward Kaye

  5. parakkum

    There was even a “50 Years of Gay Legion of Super-Heroes Fandom” panel. If I hadn’t had a conflict, I would have attended that one just to figure out what, in particular, makes the Legion more amenable to gay fandom than any other long-running comics title.

  6. edkaye

    Well, one would assume that it is because the legion has always been about acceptance. Nationality, race, sexuality etc. everyone is equal

    Maybe I am just reading to much into it :)

  7. stolenfuton

    I, too, went on the goose hunt for the mysterious artwork for the mysterious project at Naked Fat Rave, but he didn’t have it with him at the time. :(

  8. lithera

    So sorry you couldn’t talk about your projects but I was very happy to see that you saw the lady dressed up as Batwoman. I’m also sorry that I didn’t end up running into you again but was happy to say I got a chance to say hello.

    Black Lanterns. Man. Between that and Neil Gaiman writing Batman, I’m all a-flutter.

  9. crisper

    Sorry I never quite managed to make schedules work such that I could cross paths with you at anything scheduled, nor bump into you on the floor. (Same thing happened with Geoff as well, first time I haven’t had a chance to talk to him at Con in years.) (Patty Jeres, too, for that matter! *sniff* Would have liked to seen her.)

  10. admin

    I’m curious about this. I’ll have to ask where it had gone off too.

    Saw your post about Worst Day Ever. Very much hoping that things will turn around.

  11. admin

    Suddenly I see a marathon or two in my (distant) future.

  12. admin

    Keith is amazing. Very funny, very smart, and, sincerely, a dear friend. He and I keep circling projects, looking for something to do together. Hopefully we’ll find something in the next year.

  13. admin

    I didn’t even know you were at the show! Which, I suppose, says everything about what that show has become.

    Maybe next time — it’d be great to sit down and chat in person.

  14. admin

    There are some good reasons for holding off on the announcements. They will come. Some day.

  15. lithera

    *chuckles*

    I’m sure that there are plenty of great reasons but that doesn’t always make it less frustrating.

  16. edkaye

    I kept meaning to reply to this, but… you know how it is.

    I love Keith’s irreverent attitude at panels. A lot of his writing seems to have that wonderful sense of humour, and the style of parody, that you find in stories by Pat Mills, John Wagner and Alan Grant in 2000 A.D. Which I have been buying since I was about 8, and is still great to this day.

    In fact, I loved when he and Alan Grant teamed up to write Lobo. You just don’t seem to get American comics like Lobo anymore. The world needs more Lobo, I tells ya!

  17. snagvictim

    Dude, I am going to teach you a drawing. I don’t know what it will be yet, but the day will come when someone asks you for a drawing, and you will go whf whf whf and hand their book back to them, and they’ll be all wide-eyed and grateful like the kid in the Mean Joe Green Coca Cola commercial. I promise: this will happen.

  18. jthuconn

    Stumptown

    Greg- Been trolling eBay watching and waiting for the Stumptown preview to pop up and not a one since SDCC. Any chance there’s some extras floating around? I’ve been really looking forward to checking it out and after seeing that poster, MAN.

  19. nbs_totg

    Johns hosts a class? I knew Slott did, but not johns.

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