Monday, June 1, 2015

An Awesome End to Crazy May

My wife and I have been referring to May as "Crazy May." During the entire month, we didn't have a single day off, taking every weekend to do something from baby showers to our friends' wedding, and everything in between.  I ended "Crazy May" in an exhausting, but extremely awesome way, at AwesomeCon.

AwesomeCon is a sci-fi/fantasy/comic convention in Washington DC.  It's a relatively young con, only its sixth year or so, but was still very large.  The convention took over the entire convention center, with panels, a starship simulator, gaming rooms (both tabletop and video games) and more upstairs.  And then in the basement-like downstairs, there were hundreds of exhibitors and artists, including myself.

This is the view coming down the escalator of  my side of Artist's Alley.  There were celebrities to the right of the open area, mostly sci-fi/fantasy stars like William Shatner, George Takei, Sean Astin, and Arthur Darvill, just to name a few. To the left of Artist's Alley were the high-budget exhibitors with elaborate displays of merchandise, electronics, and more. Everything from Books-A-Million, Hollywood mask makers, to the Washington Nationals baseball team. There were hundreds of artists and exhibitors, although only four authors of books (non comic-books), including myself.

I had a helper come each day.  Above is my booth, before the con opened on Saturday. That's my cousin, who helped me that day.  The event was exhausting. Three days of promotion, talking to guests (the overwhelming majority of whom were in fantastic costumes), and doing my best to talk up the books. My helper on the final day was my wife Rachel. To make it even more stressful, Saturday was our first anniversary. I felt bad spending the day at the con, but we did go out for dinner and dessert following the event that night.

Overall I sold 50 books, and passed out promotional items including postcards, brochures and bookmarks to hundreds of others.  I had three art prints for sale, inspired by the novels, and many people commented that the prints helped them want to read the novels.  I was very happy with the event, and definitely plan to do more cons in the future.

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