Tag: Comic-Con

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The Heroes Are Us

Tomorrow night begins my seventh sojourn to the greatest geekfest and pop-culture event on the planet. Imitator shows are everywhere this Century, but none commands character and class like the original. San Diego Comic-Con is an amazing amalgamation of hopes and aspirations—and the grandest storytelling—where, for four days and a Preview Night, tens of thousands of people can be themselves—fit in, rather than feel oddball—or be whom they would want to be by dressing up as beloved superheroes or villains and by adoring the storytellers and actors behind them.

The first, full three-day event took place from Aug. 1-3, 1970, at the U.S. Grand Hotel, with about 300 attendees and sci-fi luminaries, including Ray Bradbury and A.E. van Vogt. This week, 130,000 attendees will storm San Diego Convention Center to enter an alternate reality, where the social rules binding them everyday no longer apply. 

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Comic-Con Heroes: The Departure

They say the end is only the beginning. Today’s installment ends serialization of my ebook Comic-Con Heroes: The Fans Who Make the Greatest Show on Earth. On July 8, 2015, after my current commitment with Amazon KDP Select ends, the tome’s release into the public domain begins—as promised. I plan to make copies available here, from Bunny Bows Press, and most likely Smashwords. I am still working out final logistics. Free also means removing the book from Amazon, which doesn’t permit the option. I am exploring a one-cent alternative.

A week ago, I posted the last of the dozen 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, The Volunteer, The Vendor, and The Millennial

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Comic-Con Heroes: The Millennial

Today’s excerpt from my 2013 ebook Comic-Con Heroes: The Fans Who Make the Greatest Show on Earth is the last of the dozen profiles, which I started serializing Saturdays more than two months ago. One more installment remains, posting in a week, after which, on July 8, 2015, when my current commitment with Amazon KDP Select ends, the book releases into the public domain.

To recap: “Comic-Con Heroes” is a collection of profiles. Twelve attendees. The people whom I believe are the real stars of the show. Not Hollywood, which presence feels larger every year. As I write in the book’s opening section: “While many Conners role-play fictional characters or superheroes, fans of every ilk play the most important role of all. They are Comic-Con. But no one tells their stories. I want to change that”. 

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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 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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Sometimes Reddit Comments are the Best Storytelling

What could be better Sunday reading than cats jumping into cars? I stumbled onto this Reddit post roundabout way from something that appeared in my social network. Stated simply: A “cat climbed into” Jonny_Bloodbeard‘s “work van in downtown Detroit to keep warm. They choose you right?” Nearly 500 comments later, I’m impressed by the civil discourse and some of the cat tails—er, tales.

Take a look at the screenshot and the story about the cat riding to church for attention and a couple other Redditers’ ribbing responses. I love it. This is what interaction should be among commenters, and their personal stories add so much to the original post. 

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SDCC 2015 Open Registration Success!

In theory, I will go to San Diego Comic-Con this year—as a paying customer. For that I am most grateful and for the ease of the Open Registration process. From 2009 to 2014, I attended as registered press, but for some reason my status wasn’t re-certified. There was no formal rejection, just no approval during the typical “within 6 weeks” period after verification document submission.

SDCC’s streamlined process is a grabbag of chance. If you have an active ID on the system (before a cut-off date) and attended the previous year, you receive a code to participate in the registration process. That means using the number and last name to enter the waiting room between 8 a.m. to 9 a.m. PST. Anyone in the room when sales commence at 9 o`clock can be randomly chosen to purchase passe(s). Chrome refreshed me to the buying queue about 20 minutes after sales started. 

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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 Nerd Culturist

Comic-Con’s contractual commitment to San Diego expires in 2016, and the event already entertains offers to move to another city. While conducting interviews during SDDC 2013 for Comic-Con Heroes: The Fans Who Make the Greatest Show on Earth, I asked numerous attendees about relocation. Among them: Tauri Miller, whose profile appears in the ebook.

For whatever it’s worth, I favor keeping the Con in San Diego. While the convention center limits the number of participants to about 130,000 over four days, the city already is a tourist destination with all the right amenities, which include hotels and the Gaslamp Quarter. Getting in out and around (including the airport) is much easier than Los Angeles, by contrast.