Monsters are Halloween and EVERY DAY…
There’s really just entirely too much to talk about this week, even for me.
Yeah, I’m serious. “The Walking Dead” premiered as a series on AMC, the Undead Nightmare expansion came out for Red Dead Redemption, and then of course there was Long Beach Comic Con. I could probably do a whole blog on any one of those topics… for now I’ll just chime in with most everyone else on The Walking Dead pilot being really, really good (including some LGZ goodness right up front!), I’ll state that Undead Nightmare is insidiously fun, and then let me move right along and talk LBCC.
If I told you the Convention was a huge money maker for us, I’d be lying. I’d also be lying to say that we had a lot of traffic at our table all weekend. What we did have, though, might best be exemplified in a picture like this:
That’s me, the meat in an Amanda Conner/Jimmy Palmiotti sandwich. She provided the clothespin as part of her whole Skunk costume motif. The knife is mine, and fills up with blood if you hold it point down… I never imagined so many people would be so fascinated by something that cost me $8 at the local seasonal Halloween store, and that includes Jimmy and Amanda.
Anyhow, it’s one thing to get your picture taken with these guys, and another to get your picture taken after closing time on Sunday when you’ve been their table neighbors all weekend. We managed some quality time, even though Amanda had a sketch/autograph line pretty much from bell to bell all three days she was there… hell, we apparently made a good enough impression that she asked if we’d stow and look after her bags while she did a panel, and if you’d told me a year ago that would happen, I’d have called you overly optimistic, if not a damn liar. Miz Conner, if you happen to be reading this, I swear we didn’t lick anything.
Jimmy was great, too, inviting me to pull up a chair and go through his latest Jonah Hex issue and ask him questions on how he scripted it. I repaid him with an unintentional videobomb of his ComicVine interview (shown on this page) when you see Dawn applying my Zombie Ranch brand tattoo about 3/4ths of the way through. People probably are wondering if that dude in the Batman shirt has a fever. I suppose I could have turned towards the camera and gotten the tattoo on film, but I was being a good boy.
But anyhow, I’m finally starting to feel like we might belong amongst all these established people, especially if we keep working at what we’re doing. We didn’t sell a lot of our print comics, but we did sell more than one to people I’d never met, some of whom had never even run across the comic until the convention, but after a look felt like it was worth shelling out $5 of their hard earned cash for. That was very, very encouraging to us. Similarly, our panel had what I considered to be a damn decent crowd for a Sunday afternoon, especially since the amount of faces I didn’t know outnumbered those I did. All the audio-visual stuff worked fine and we gave out a lot of information I hope was useful to people… and there were lots of nods and note takings and even a couple folk who came by our table after to ask more questions, so I’m guessing that indicates a yes.
I didn’t even mention yet how well treated we were by the organizers. Martha Donato (the head organatrix) came by on Friday to personally introduce herself and chat with us, then the head of programming came by and gave me a guided tour of the panel area at my request. Small things, I guess, but it made me feel important. A convention where they have people like Amanda Conner and Mark Waid on the floor, and they’re bothering to talk to us and show me around? Niiice. San Diego had best approve our Small Press application this time around, so that I can be humbled into buglike insignificance again. Then again if they deny us that should serve the same purpose… but we won’t be chained to a table the whole time.
So while from an economic and promotional standpoint LBCC wasn’t stratospheric for us, from a confidence and connections standpoint Dawn and I were on Cloud 9. It was great to start seeing some familiar fan faces from prior appearances, as well as a couple of new ones. I went walkabout with my forehead brand, which was quite the conversation piece–most people were wondering if it was the ‘OZ’ logo, but that just gave me opportunity to explain the true significance… and a couple of times that I did that, the response was “Oh! Zombie Ranch! That’s you?” Loved that. In reciprocation of that recognition, I particularly would like to mention Shane and Chris Houghton, the brothers responsible for Reed Gunther, and Rick Marson, the mad Dr. Frankenstein of handmade stitchery behind the ZOMs. Rick had a very flashy (literally!) zombie costume for Halloween, which actually ended up winning Image’s Walking Dead promo contest, but let’s get back to the ZOMs. Rick has somehow managed to make zombies cuddly. This shows he is very talented, and on top of that he’s also a treat to “talk shop” with in regards to the undead.
I’m sure I’m forgetting things, but like I said, just too much to talk about. Maybe I’ll get to Red Dead Redemption and The Walking Dead next week. For now, I wanted to share the impetus for the title of this blog… I personally wasn’t there this time so I only have Dawn’s word for what happened, but apparently we had another adorable little girl incident (the first was documented in my blog from LBCC ’09). This time around, though, the girl was far from silent as she declared her enthusiasm for all things monsterly. She ended up haranguing her dad into buying a Cthulhu that Dawn sketched, dismissing her father’s attempt to guide her towards the sketch of a witch instead. According to Dawn, the exchange was more or less as follows:
“Don’t you want the witch? It’s Halloween…”
“Pfft. Witches are Halloween. Monsters are Halloween and EVERY DAY!”
You just can’t argue with logic like that.