This weekend I heard lots of people say the same thing: TCAF is so full of amazing creators that the experience is almost overwhelming. At every turn you find wonderful things that you want to own, and you hardly know how to spend your money! You want to read it all. My husband told me on the first day that he’d already blown through his budget and he hadn’t even left the second floor atrium. (Though we somehow found some money for the second day, for some of the other wonderful books we wanted. Here’s a link to a photo the hubby took of our haul. I think we need a whole new bookshelf for all this!) So, yes. It really was a great show.
This year the atrium had a middle aisle of tables, which TCAF organizer Chris Butcher told me was at the request of the folks running the library, who wanted the area to seem more “full.” I’d say they got their wish! From about 11:00am onwards the second floor was quite crowded, and I’m told the first floor was equally packed. At most shows I have slow times when I can sit down and work on some sketches—not at this show! Typically at a comic con I’ll get lots of folks who zoom right on by my table with barely a glance, either because they aren’t there to buy comics or they have specific interests that don’t overlap with what I do. Not at TCAF. Here, the majority of passers-by, even the ones that didn’t buy anything, seemed to linger long enough to really take in each table’s offerings. There didn’t seem to be that reluctance I often find at other shows to pick up and flip through a book. The people coming by were here because they were looking for something to read. It was… nice.
Sunday was, as you might suppose, more laid back than Saturday, so I was able to go around a little and hunt down some creators I’d been looking forward to meeting, and say hello to a few familiar faces. I was delighted to finally get to meet Dylan Meconis, who was as lovely a person as I’d imagined. I picked up a copy of her new book, volume 1 of Family Man. I love the webcomic, and I know I’ll enjoy it all over again reading it on paper. I was also pleased to meet Barry Deutsch, who created the comic with what has to be the best tagline ever: “Yet another Troll-fighting 11-Year-Old Orthodox Jewish Girl Comic.” Hereville: How Mirka Got Her Sword. I thought this was just going to be a collected version of the webcomic, but it turns out that the whole story has been expanded and there’s lots of new material! Woo hoo! I only had a far-too-brief chat with Angela Melick of the webcomic Wasted Talent (I am totally digging her book– why didn’t I go over to her table when I had the chance???), but I did find time to bring my daughter—who is a huge fan of comic strips like Garfield and Calvin and Hobbes, not to mention nuts about dogs—over to meet Dave Kellett and get a copy of his book Pugs signed to her (she brought it with her to school today). I bought his Drive collection for me, and burbled on about how much I love listening to the Webcomics Weekly podcast.
A bit more name-dropping here, mainly in the interest of sharing more books that you should check out: Jim Ottaviani had with him copies of his imminent book on Feynman (yay!), and my son was grinning from ear to ear when he showed me the copy he’d won of the also-not-quite-released book Astronaut Academy by Dave Roman. I was so glad that Crystal Yates of Earthsong and Stef of Sarah Zero stopped by– their respective webcomics are about as different as you can get, but each is amazing in its own way. And old pal Mike White—whom I haven’t seem in over a decade!—had the table next to mine, and he had with him copies of his new book from SLG, Amity Blamity. He drew incredibly cute sketches inside of every book—every one!—he sold: Chester the pig high-fiving a little cartoon-version of the person who just bought the book. Awwww!
Galaxion Book 2 did manage to arrive in time, so TCAF saw the debut of my second graphic novel! I packed what I thought would be way more books than I would sell, but out of a whole case of books I only brought home two. And that’s not even taking into account the other things I had for sale. What a weekend!
Thank you to everyone who stopped by to say they’ve enjoyed my comic, and to all who bought some stuff. You made this the best convention ever. And I know I say that a lot, but it really was!