After exhibiting at a good handful of conventions, even a successful comic con can start to feel a little… vanilla. Most have the same basic structure, the same folks who exhibiting attracting the same crowds. They all begin to blur together. So, from a business standpoint for a WEBcomic creator, it’s good to exert yourself once in a while and say….
“Now for a little something different”….
And that’s exactly what Intervention Con, founded by Onezumi Hartstein and James Harknell, is supposed to be all about. Bringing the fun stuff form the internet to one location for fans, readers, and enthusiasts to connect face-to-face with, for once. The biggest difference, for the webcomic creators, is the empowering feeling of standing on our own and not being shoved to the side by the big names in the comic book industry. The assortment of vendors and artists are so widely vast, the playing field is level…. every man, woman and cosplay character for themselves!
Okay, Yadda Yadda, Let’s Get to the Recap!
I shared a table with my con-buddy TL Collins of Bullfinch, however the tables were 8′ and not 6′ so we each had a decent 4′ space to spread out in. The staff and everyone in general was pleasant and helpful, and we got the feeling this convention was more about making the creators feel welcome– little things like a flyer with humorously written reviews of local restaurants and bars, and lots of events and parties geared towards the creators no matter their readership size or talent level, go a long way! Onezumi herself even stopped by my table to say hello and thank me for coming! On Sunday all of artist alley got to try the yummy-yet-health-conscious “Pop Chips” that were passed around for free. Good friend Liz Staley of Adrastus even had a wonderful story to share; she tweeted early one morning that she had a tremendous headache, and Onezumi immediately sent over a staff member armed with asprin! Now that’s how you make creators feel welcome…. even catered to!
Now for the downside. I struggle to even write this as Onezumi and Harknell are wonderful people who are very ambitious and excited about the success Intervention DID have in its first and second years, but I should be honest for those reading as well. I did not earn much in the way of profits. To put it bluntly, I have earned more at a 1-day convention than all 3 days combined at Intervention Con. All this shows is that Zorphbert and Fred and my kids book series did not sell well at an Internet-themed convention. From what I could tell, the most interest I saw was at the small toy/plush/crochet/trinket tables, such as the one across from me with adorable crochet pop culture icons like yoda and harry potter. It could just be the fact that buying a little toy may be cheaper than shelling out for a $15-20 book of comics that could *ahem* be found online for free. And, the economy lately makes spending anything a hard decision. Throw any excuse you want at it, this convention was not profitable for me to return next year, as of writing this.
Combine that in with the fact that I had JUST caught a bad cold and was suffering congestion, migraines, coughing spats and general cold-medicine-haze, and desperately trying to combat that with more red bulls than I had ever drank in my life, the weekend could have been a total dismal failure.
However, the upside made up for everything. I had a blast chatting with fellow creators like Chris of Capes and Babes, Will & Kate of Binary Souls / Other Dimensions, Eric and Brittany of Snow by Night, Travis and Jennifer of Hainted Holler, Carolyn of Curls (among other things), Jennie Breeden of Devil’s Panties, Chris & Ben of A Dog’s Life, plus many more I am failing to list (sorry!). The comradery at a dinner for 16 or so at a nearby brewery with excellent food (pretzels were fantastic) no doubt raised spirits and eased cold symptoms. Point being, the con experience is what you make it, whether an attendee or an exhibitor. Remember: these are your people. Do not be afraid to stop at someone’s table, introduce yourself and make a new connection. You maybe surprised just how easy it is to network and revel in what we do online.
And, from what I could tell, that’s exactly the attitude Onezumi and Hartnell are trying to cultivate with Intervention Con.
Almost Like Actually Being There!
Check out this great video tour of the floor by Tony DiGerolamo of Super Frat! Includes interview with creators (Such as ME!), after party events and lots more! Tony did a great job of piecing together the experience.
How ‘Bout Some Pics!