Here’s the thing about New York Comic Con – it’s BIG. Everyone had told me that before, but it’s hard to really wrap your brain around what 100,000 people all converging on one space really means. That’s about eight times the size of the town I live in – and it’s HUGE. I tried to go to the bathroom at the convention once. Then I saw the line and decided to hold it. Just trying to go up an escalator is a challenge – you’re moving through just a sea of humanity, with different currents all around you. And on top of that, every three steps you see something so amazing that you want to stop and check it out – usually along the lines of some incredible cosplay – so there are constant traffic jams while everyone admires a costume or takes a picture.
That’s just the entryway – then there’s the showroom, which has SO MUCH stuff – every time I went through it, I saw a new booth with incredible stuff. I think my favorite discovery was when Django Wexler and I were trying to find the popcorn booth (om nom) and bumped into the Geek Chic That was some of the most amazing furniture I’d ever seen, and I now sincerely covet one of their customized gaming tables. I also now know what Django’s first purchase will probably be if his Forbidden Library series becomes the next Harry Potter. (which it really ought to, because I love it)
Then there was Artist’s Alley, which was packed with amazing talent, beautiful artwork, and more hordes of people. (I bought one amazing poster from Sara Richard for my home office – guess which one?) There were also the panels, which filled up really fast, so if you wanted to go to one (and these weren’t the TV ones, either) you had to line up about half an hour early. Plus there was the autographing section, which honestly terrified me. So while I really would’ve liked to meet Felicia Day, the line scared me off.
Then there’s the best part of the con – meeting people! I got to meet up with lots of people who I’d already met at other cons, plus lots of new people! It was fantastic. The first thing I got to do was at the Penguin booth, where Myke Cole, Benedict Jacka, and I were signing copies of our books. Now, I thought that this meant that we’d be kind of hand-selling a little, maybe meeting some people who had brought their copies. Oh no – that’s not how Penguin rolls. The first hundred people who lined up at the booth got free copies of each of our books, that we would then sign. It was SO COOL.
It was a lot of fun meeting so many excited readers, and all of whom now had shiny copies of Generation V for me to sign! Hopefully people really enjoyed reading it, and also will then post reviews to Amazon and Goodreads. (hint. hint.)
This is what it looked like to be on the author side of the booth – lots of people, and Myke Cole’s derriere, preserved for posterity.
I was going to lunch with Django right afterwards, so here’s a picture of all of us – and Myke couldn’t resist pretending to write on Benedict’s face. (probably: “For incredible British cheekbones, see above”) You can also see Django making sure that his model Swarmer from The Forbidden Library made it into the photo.
But Benedict ended up going to lunch with us, so all was forgiven. He also did me a huge solid late that night of helping me navigate the subway back to Forest Hills, where I was staying with family. Now, if you’re a New Yorker, you might be saying to yourself – “Manhattan to Forest Hills? That’s stupid-easy – get on either the E or the F and it takes you straight there.” And, valid point. Except for the part where my powers of navigation are so horrendous that I routinely (routinely!) get lost in parking garages. And just to find my car again in parking garages, I usually draw a little pirate map for myself. It takes me a long time to orient myself to areas enough to just find my way along a regular route comfortably, and as for making logical variations on that route? Such as, “Well, if I’ve been getting on the E train at 34th Street, why not just pick it up further down the line?” – yeah, that takes a while. (my navigation was so insanely shitty the second night that Django Wexler actually asked how much I’d had to drink – three sodas. Epic fail.)
The next day was the Geek Geek Revolution panel – very fun! It was me, Django, Myke, Anton Strout, Andrea Cremer aka A. D. Robertson, and Alex London. (Mia Garcia did a fantastic job as moderator, but I unfortunately don’t have a picture of her)
Other highlights include an absolutely delightful author dinner where Diana Rowland made me laugh so hard I nearly fell out of my chair. So a really fun convention! I’m bummed that I won’t be able to attend NYCC next year, but one of my best friends has decided to get married that weekend, and since I’m in the bridal party, I’ll be somewhat busy. This was my last con of 2013, and I really had such an amazing time at all three that I attended. I’m putting together my list of cons that I’m hoping to attend in 2014 – mostly drivable within the New England/Tri-State area, but I’ll probably do one travel con. I’m giving serious consideration to DragonCon, so I’ll post my con schedule when I have it.
In other news – this is the release day of my friend Matthew Quinn Martin’s debut urban fantasy/horror novel, Nightlife! So definitely go check it out! Fun fact, Matthew and I used to teach at the same college, and we shared office space. We got very little actual work done, but we did have a fantastic time talking about writing and constructing monsters. I have it on excellent authority that Matthew’s take on vampires is nightmare-worthy.