So this was my first trip to SPX, Spandexless’ second outing, and sweet sun demon it was a blast. We had interviews, we bought books, we met great people, and it was the first time most of the writing team could talk to each other in meatspace. Pretty awesome. I haven’t done a single interview in person since high school, though, so this weekend was a great crash course in journalism. Here’s some of my personal highlights from the expo:
- A panel on the British publishing scene, in which we learn about how its popularity has ebbed and flowed for the past few decades.
- Discovering American Barbarian.
- Free burritos.
- Free liquor.
- Super Art Fight!
- Interviewing Jamie Noguchi.
- Chatting with Harvey Pekar’s wife and best friend.
- Interviewing Tom Scioli and Stan Mack.
- Buying far more books and comics than I originally anticipated.
- Eating McDonald’s for the first time in over twelve years.
- Talking to Meredith Gran, Chris Hastings, KC Green and Nick Abadzis.
- Peanut butter Oreos. It’s been a while.
- Tipping a concierge and being rewarded with the handsomest smile. Always be a bro to the working class.
- Being saluted by a homeless man for wearing an Autobots T-shirt after I gave him some cash.
- A panel where I learned the absolute basics of drawing comics, producing a four panel page comic that drew directly from the bottom of my insane minds’ deep well.
- Ed Piskor talking about how to justify his work to editors using historical research.
- Stan Mack talking about his work in journalism and how that work relates to his own history projects.
- Free books!
- Ignatz awards.
There’s more, and I wish I could remember everything, because it was pretty amazing for a personal first outing. The staff I work with are awesome people and it was great meeting the other writers I didn’t already know off the net.
I do feel like kind of a jerk, in that I was critical of Nick Abadzis’ art style in Laika when I reviewed it–to me it seemed cramped and eye straining. Then he told me that the idea behind that choice was to reflect the time crunch the Soviets were under to complete the trails for the space program–my eyes were aching because the scientists had a time crunch the entire time. It’s genius. Then he complimented my intelligence for noticing a panel layout pattern similar to Russian Matryoshka dolls and I felt simultaneously elated and guilty. He’s definitely a cool guy and I enjoyed talking to him. I also picked up one of his works and you can expect a review from it soon, along with a ton of other titles.
So even though I’m still looking for gainful employment, you can bet that for the next week this is basically my full time job. You can expect some transcripts of interviews I did, book reviews and possibly even some amateur video of the Ignatz awards posted if we’re able to.
This is David signing off, thank you and sorry.