I took my five floppies comic books and went and the reception of the crowd was very lukewarm. A lot of folks were asking me if my books are for kids, which was a first (I've sold this book at ~50 animecons and I've only had a handful of people ask me about the age range). Or wanted picture books.
I did get to meet a few people I admired from twitter but once I met my three people, it was mostly me meeting readers who waned to meet me. I didn't know who a lot of the authors there were, even the popular ones.
I don't entirely understand what the Ignatz award is. It was mentioned a lot but never quite explained, so I didn't quite get how to participate in it or if that was important. The people with tables are super into this award, but the crowd seemed mostly interested in finding books for people under 9 to me.
It was a book fest with comics where the crowd assumed that comics should be for kids, since the big two make comics that are primarily aimed at adults due to the violent content + lack of teen or child protagonists.
I could kind of understand why an event like this needs to exist in America, but it was not working in my favor. I spent a lot of time explaining what my book is about to people who wern't seeing the point of my comics. I couldn't convince them to care because they didn't know to care lol
I felt really silly, as though I was selling guitar picks at a famous oil painter's gallery opening. This crowd was certain that comics are Nancy and The Peanuts and not Naruto or Saint Tail, becuase those are manga, which in ther minds, isn't comics. It felt that way.
There wasn't a noticeable effort to ensure that more people would be receptive to comics that looked like mine. I know there's not a lot of us Asian Americans making comic books or books in general, but the crowd didn't see meaning in this.
lol yeah, so I am really happy for everybody who was there and having a goodtime and meeting all the people they haven't met in months or a year. But I thinkI'm going to need like one or two friends to show me around SPX if I go again. I did not have a good time being in the far back of the hall, being on a half table (people kept thinking we were one table), and few folks stopping to pick up the book to see the inside.
SPX is becoming an odd convnetion where people who can do every aspect of production to marketing assume everyone should be able to make a book and kickstarter it and market it themselves. I'm in the camp of: Self-publishing is one alternative to full-house publishing, but it is an alternative solution that doesn't work for the majority of people; Self-publishing is unusual.
Glad for people who can produce and kickstart and sell the comic book they made, but this should not have to be a requirement to put out a comic book. I feel like publishing companies came into existence for a good reason, and that comics cannot become independent of the publishing industry.
lol so many mixed feels because on one hand I recognize SPX is useful for people selling middle-grade comic books, but people's perception of what's a middle grade is "stuff that looks like a Disney" and "none of that anime looking stuff"