Locust Moon, and NYCC this Weekend

I’m keeping pretty busy these days! This weekend I’ll make a brief appearance at the New York Comic Con. I’ll be signing copies of my book Drawing Comics Labs at the Quayside Publishing booth (# 2006) from 11:30-12:30 on Saturday. Stop by and say hi!

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Locust Moon offered it’s second annual comics festival on Saturday. I hadn’t heard much about this show, but a half table was pretty cheap ($50) and it’s a short trip from New York (a 2-hour bus ride, about $30 round trip). So I took the gamble, not expecting to make much money (which is how it turned out).

I was curious about the city, which I never properly visited. It turns out Philly has beauty and character in spades. Next time I’ll stay longer. I guess the trick is to think of these conventions not as money-making endeavors, but as vacations with a lot of busy work during the day. That busy work isn’t necessarily profitable, but it does leave you with a pile of cash at the end of the day, and that’s pretty convenient.

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The festival was held in the Rotunda, a beautiful (if somewhat haunting and decrepit) old church. I loved it! Unfortunately, it wasn’t air conditioned and the weather was downright balmy (in October, no less!) I saw a lot of sweaty customers and cartoonists. But everyone was friendly. Maybe Philadelphians are nice than New Yorkers.

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The amazing Sam Johns was my table helper. I never had a table helper before. Does this mean I’ve made it? I paid her in comics and SEPTA tokens. I may not be doing this right. Thanks, Sam!

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That’s me. On my left is my table neighbor, Vishavjit Singh and his wife of Sihktoons.

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My view of the ceiling.

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The scaffolding was a bit of an eyesore.

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Oh, hey, that’s Jim Steranko.

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Nice pipes.

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My obligatory photo of Box Brown.

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Farel Dalrymple. I think he’s Philadelphia’s native son. They sure do love him here!

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Will Lauren.

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Michael Kupperman.

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Pat Aulisio.

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Locust Moon Comics, the shop that put on the show. Pretty sharp!

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My haul.

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Philly Comic BBQ Recap

I didn’t do so well at the Ridgewood Market. It was basically a flea market in a community center basement, and my stuff just didn’t fit in. Live and  learn!

I had a much better time at the Philly Comic BBQ. Not that I sold any books, but I had a good time. It was more of a kegger than a convention, anyway.

I rode down with Matt Moses (Hic and Hoc Publications), Bill Kartalopoulos (Rebus Books), Dave Nuss (Revival  House Press) and Laura Knetzger (a talented young cartoonist who was just Published by Yeah Dude). It was great to get to know those guys (and gal) better. We bonded, and this is what I learned:

Matt used to be a professional record dealer, and I really like his taste in music.

Bill is a lot funnier than I realized, and he can do funny voices.

Dave used to live in Russia and he likes the Smashing Pumpkins.

Laura is from Seattle and she didn’t get much sleep the night before (she fell asleep a few times during the party).

I got to meet a lot of publishers and cartoonists at the BBQ, both good steps towards my goal of documenting the minicomic and micropress. For example, Frank Santoro backed up my theory that it was the early nineties (’92, ’93?) when the word “mini-comic” meant any self published comic, not just the new-wave quarter size ones. I need to remember to talk with him again if I ever get serious about writing a history.

So, here are the photos. These are just a few of the ones that will make it into my next big project: The  Micropress Yearbook.

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Pat Aulisio (he threw the shindig)

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Josh Bayer and Dave Nuss

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Terry LaBan

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Frank Santoro and a lady

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The party is heating up!

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Reading good stuff

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Bill Kartalopoulos and Frank Santoro

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The bathroom at Cha-Cha’Razzi, the studio space/performance venue that hosted the party

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Box Brown

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Matt Moses