Category: Profile

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Comic-Con Heroes: The Vendor

Serialization of my ebook Comic-Con Heroes: The Fans Who Make The Greatest Show On Earth rapidly winds down. With today’s installment, three remain, before I release the 2013 tome into the public domain, on July 8, 2015, when my current commitment with Amazon KDP Select ends. The other profiles, in order of appearance: The Dark Knight, The Fighter, The Collectors, The AcademicThe Nerd Culturist, The Writer,The Bicyclists, The Heroine, The Time Lord, and The Volunteer.

I interviewed the last two Comic-Con 2013 attendees on the final day, for which tickets cost a little less and when San Diegan families flow into the conventions center. You can only really appreciate what the Con represents, as a cultural phenomenon, by mingling with the last-day crowds. 

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Comic-Con Heroes: The Volunteer

Three more profiles, and the conclusion, remain before I release my ebook Comic-Con Heroes: The Fans Who Make The Greatest Show On Earth into the public domain, on July 8, 2015, after my current commitment with Amazon KDP Select ends. To recap: The tome features 12 attendees from the 2013 San Diego convention. This year marks my seventh, but I am a paying participant; for reasons I don’t understand, my press credentials weren’t recertified.

So far we have met, in order of appearance: The Dark Knight, The Fighter, The Collectors, The AcademicThe Nerd Culturist, The Writer,The Bicyclists, The Heroine, and The Time Lord. They represent a surprising cross-section of Comic-Con attendees, ranging from a toy anthropologist to a hopeful future storyteller. They’re all worth your attention. Place look back.

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Comic-Con Heroes: The Time Lord

San Diego Comic-Con 2013 was a great venue for Dr. Who. The 50th-year celebration was underway, and there was tremendous excitement about the new Doctor. The program is always popular at the Con, but there was special aura—and were attendees in costumes and garb of all kinds everywhere.

The Time Lord is topic of today’s installment from my ebook Comic-Con Heroes: The Fans Who Make The Greatest Show On Earth, which goes into the public domain on July 8, 2015, after my current commitment with Amazon KDP Select ends. Previously posted in order of appearance: The Dark Knight, The Fighter, The Collectors, The AcademicThe Nerd Culturist, The Writer, The Bicyclists, and The Heroine (Ericka Quesada). 

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Comic-Con Heroes: The Heroine

It’s Saturday, and that means another excerpt from my ebook Comic-Con Heroes: The Fans Who Make The Greatest Show On Earth, which profiles one-dozen attendees from SDCC 2013. One week ago, the Con held Open Registration, where participating for the first time I was fortunate enough to obtain passes for all four days and the Preview Night. From 2009-2014, accredited press status assured access.

Without press accreditation, I expect San Diego Comic-Con 2015 to be my last, as obtaining passes one year is no guarantee of getting them the next. Judging from social network responses to last week’s 59-minute ticket sales, many people who attended last year couldn’t purchase passes for the next one. Attendance is capped at 130,000. 

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Comic-Con Heroes: The Bicyclists

I am quite reflective about San Diego Comic-Con on this fine Saturday. An hour from now, thousands of people will begin the registration process that, from 9 a.m. PST, will let them into the online waiting room where they might be chosen to purchase tickets. I will be among them, for the first time since moving to San Diego in October 2007. My attendance was always guaranteed, for being a news reporter.

But SDCC has yet to re-certify my press status, and as time drags on the likelihood diminishes. Earlier this week, I received email indicating eligibility to participate in Open Registration, for which I am hugely appreciative. I worried about my uncertain status locking me out from purchasing tickets. Press get free admission, which is a benefit I can take or leave; paying is no problem. It is the assured admission that matters to me. 

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Comic-Con Heroes: The Writer

Among the 12 profiles that are the core of my book Comic-Con Heroes: The Fans Who Make the Greatest Show on Earth, the one that follows offers the most interesting content for science fiction fans. The convention isn’t just about superheroes. Sci-fi is part of the core culture dating back to the very start during the 1970s, and it’s even stronger in the 2010s. Because what was niche more than 40 years ago is mainstream, and more, today.

This profile also introduces some valuable historical insight—if 10 years can be considered old, and measured by Internet time it most certainly is. Fans’response to a new sci-fi television show, and their torrenting it, kicked the pebbles eventually unleashing an avalanche of legitimately-available streamed TV programming. So-called video pirates of 2005 are indirectly responsible for there being Hulu, Netflix streaming, and Google’s purchase of newbie service YouTube. 

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Comic-Con Heroes: The Collectors

Two weeks ago, I started serializing my ebook Comic-Con Heroes: The Fans Who Make the Greatest Show on Earth. Welcome to the third of 13 installments before the book releases into the public domain, on July 8, 2015, after my current commitment for Amazon KDP Select ends. In the first segment we met The Dark Knight, and in the second a Medieval, Scandinavian fighter.

The third profile gets more to the core Con—not people who attend to dress up and be someone else for a day or few—but those who are there to collect. Comic book and toy collecting are undercurrents that keep the event vital. Hollywood productions may get more media attention, and for sure lots of people line up for television show and movie star-studded panels. But the show’s lifeforce are the artists, their fans, and people who look for rare comics or limited-edition items. 

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Comic-Con Heroes: The Dark Knight

For San Diego Comic-Con 2015, I am required to reverify my press status—the second time since starting to attend as news media in 2009. I submitted the required documents and story links in early December 2014 and now anxiously await my SDCC fate. If denied, I will unlikely attend this year’s Con, having missed other opportunities to register. If that happens, the world won’t end. Life will go forward. But my birthday, which occurs during the July 9-12 dates, will be somewhat sorrowful this year.

I love Comic-Con for what it represents: Storytelling and attendees being or associating with the people they wish they could be. I laid out my thoughts on the latter concept in July 2010 post “The Roles We Play“, which I adapted as the introduction to my 2013 event project: Comic-Con Heroes: The Fans Who Make the Greatest Show on Earth. I had much hope for the ebook, when published about 18 months ago. But sales were never good—and as distance grows greater from the events told, time diminishes the content’s value. 

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Rolling Stone's 'The Bomber' hits target

Last night I came home from San Diego Comic-Con Day 1 to find the newest Rolling Stone open, facedown on the living room carpet; the controversial cover, with Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, stared up like Jim Morrison. I had heard about the controversy over the photo, and accusations that the magazine somehow glorified the bomb suspect, for days. So had my wife, who finished Janet Reitman’s riveting account, soon as we both settled in for the evening.

Anne never reads Rolling Stone. But the cover caught her attention enough that she consumed this one article, neglecting the New Yorker, which also arrived in the mail yesterday, coincidentally containing a smart editorial defending RS editors. She doesn’t approve of the cover, and yet it clearly was effective enough. As an editor, I must commend Rolling Stone for doing with a picture what tabloids like the New York Post or online aggregator Huffington Post does with snarky headlines: Get people to read the story.

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Look to ‘The Loop’ for Good Branding Ideas

IDG laid off my buddy Jim Dalrymple about the time I got the boot from eWEEK. Jim wasted no time starting a new enterprise, and at the right place: The brand. Jim brilliantly rebranded himself, and what he did should be lesson to any person or company looking to launch a new product or service.

It’s easy to dismiss Jim, because of “the beard.” You wouldn’t think he’s all that bright, because of the shag, which gets more in your face than his. Jim is so small town he doesn’t live in Halifax, Nova Scotia, but just outside the city. Most Americans would respond “Where?” if asked about Halifax. Hehe, that could be a “Jeopardy” answer. But greater Halifax, the largest city north of Boston and east of Montreal, is home to about 360,000 people.