So this weekend I popped my comic con cherry and attended my first convention. Luckily enough for me there was one just on my door step in the form of the Cardiff International Comic Expo (CICE) which was held at the Mercure Holland House Hotel.
And what a day I had. After being greeted at the door by Darth Vader and Stormtroopers from the 501 UK Garrison, we were efficiently and quickly herded through the registration tables and then on to the con floor itself which was held in a bright and airy room to the side of the hotel. After a quick tour of the floor and parting with some of my con budget, there some real bargains to be had, I managed to get a copy of Andi Ewington’s 45 for a fiver (it was a second but I can honestly see nothing wrong with it even after it was pointed out by Andi himself) we headed up stairs for the first panel of the day which was the Sidekickcast’s live version of Secrets and Lies which seemed to go down well with both the audience and the panel alike and I managed to win a Scooby Doo comic from Paul Cornel, I know how cool is that. After a quick tea break it was back to the floor for another trip around where I picked up a Dredd commission from the brilliant Dylan Teague and then we headed out for a quick bite of lunch.
After some light refreshments it was back to the panels with Fallen Heroes Rising to the Challenge. The panel was hosted by Gavin and Dan from the Sidekickcast and it gave a brilliant insight into self publication with guests Barry Nugent (Geek Syndicate) and artist Steve Penfold giving us a run down of the highs and lows of adapting Barry’s novel Fallen Heroes into a self published comic both in paper and digital form. You can see the panel here which was filmed by the Sidekickcast’s official camera man Matt Pease.
After another tour around the con floor and spending the last of my con budget I’d set aside it was high time to hit the pub.
So congratulations to all involved with con, with a special shout out to the tiara wearing queen of organising Iz McAuliffe, it was a brilliant day and as my first con it was a great experience.
But as great as CICE was there is something that over shadowed the con and that was actually getting out and meeting my fellow geeks. Now Twitter, Face Book and the forums are funny old things you meet people on there you chat to them everyday, follow their lives and consider them to be friends and you may very well never get to meet them in real life. That’s were things change with a comic con you actually get to meet some of you’re cyber friends and I am happy to report that everybody I met this weekend without exception were absolutely brilliant and lovely.
We met, we laughed, we drank beer and we bonded over our shared love of comics and everything geeky. So I just wanted to take this opportunity to give a big shout out to everybody I met at the weekend, you all made a great day even better so thank you to each and everyone of you.
So I’ve popped my con cherry and it was very good for me. Would I do it again? Hell yes plans are being hatched as we speak for Thought Bubble so roll on November 2011.