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I love comic cons.

More specifically, I love connecting with people through comic cons. If you haven’t read my blog article from last year, Wizard World: a Conversion Story,” you might want to check that out first to get some background. But suffice it to say, I wasn’t always a fan of these things. It took a little time, but I eventually learned to relax my single-minded agenda of selling books and networking (which I still do plenty of, by the way), and instead head to the cons with the idea of building new relationships with cool, passionate people. Like I said, there’s a whole backstory to this, which you can read by clicking here.

Brad will post tomorrow with his own thoughts on the C2E2 experience, but for now let me walk us through some of my favorite highlights from the show, and some of the awesome and amazing people I got to meet while I was there.

Let’s start with our panel …

CSC-1: Kickstarting Your Comics

Panel Crowd 1

Our panel was the very first day of the con, and it also kicked off the Comics Studies Conference at C2E2! We spoke to a packed out room of fellow creators and artists looking to break into comics through crowdfunding. It was great to hear about so many new projects waiting to go live on Kickstarter, and a really good feeling to know that sharing some of our success could help others get their comics out there.

Based on the feedback we’ve received, it seems like there’s a real need for clear, concrete, and practical advice on crowdfunding. Most of the questions we fielded were about constructing budgets, negotiating percentages for consignment sale, and creating more detailed timelines for illustrating, printing, and distributing your work once the Kickstarter is over. The entire panel was recorded and we’ll post up a link to the video as soon as its available, but what’s really cool is that the conversation has kept going long after the panel’s been over.

All weekend long folks dropped by our booth to ask us Kickstarter questions, share their portfolios, and talk with us some more—and we’re still getting e.mails, Facebook messages, and Tweets from our new friends and fans. Keep ’em coming!

Kevin, Patton, Felicia … and more!

Felicia and Wes

During my pre-C2E2 countdown, I listed Kevin Smith and Patton Oswalt among the headliners I was looking forward to see. Well, those guys didn’t disappoint. As we all expected, Kevin Smith was candid, charming, and hilarious. He has a very “How I Met Your Mother” way of telling a story—meaning he feels the need to fill you in on funny asides and anecdotes before he gets to answering the question directly. It’s a roundabout way of getting there, but he’s such a joy to listen to it really doesn’t matter.

And hey, if you made it to Patton Oswalt’s Q&A, you got a twofer when Brian Posehn snuck in and started tweeting insults, which were then read aloud. It all started when Brian asked Patton, “Why do these people like you?” and then quickly escalated to him asking if he planned to grow an extra foot to play Pip the Troll.

What I forgot to mention during the countdown is that Brad won a free autograph from Felicia Day at the Drink and Draw last month and graciously gave it to me. I’m a huge fan of Geek and Sundry and, as I told Felicia when we met, it was really inspirational to see her grow her company and brand herself while I was trying to do the same with Sun Bros Studios. As my way of saying thanks, I left Felicia with her own copies of Chinatown and Apocalypse Man … but I forgot to ask if we’re ever going to see any Pokemon on her Ark.

Cosplay on Parade

Wes and Chelsea

And last but certainly not least … the cosplay. True to form, C2E2 played host to some of the best, most original costuming I’ve ever seen. My two favorite cosplayers—Chelsea and Sidney—showed up in their finest and pulled out all the stops. Whether admiring Chelsea’s homemade Carnage alien symbiote or Sid’s incredibly slick and detailed Catwoman outfit, it was just incredible to see them both in their element and showing off their craftsmanship. Other honorable mentions go to the awesome guy dressed up as Starro and the cutest Wolverine I’ve ever seen. To see all the photos, check out our image gallery on Facebook!

Moving on …

Barely having enough time to catch our breath, we’ll be moving on to more and more shows, conventions, and appearances in the weeks to come. In just a few days we’re judging a 48-hour Graphic Novel Contest, after which we’ll be in Fort Wayne, IN for Appleseed Comic Con … and after that we’ll be speaking on a panel at Open Books!

Check back tomorrow for Brad’s post-C2E2 review and, if you haven’t had a chance yet, check out the preview of our brand-new webcomic … Apocalypse Man!!! Officially launching on Monday!

apoccoverClick here to read it for yourself.