"Sometimes, they're in a basement and they get kind of dungeon-y..."

That's David Petersen, author of Mouse Guard, explaining how some cons are better than others and, in the process, giving his stamp of approval to C2E2. He was just one of the several creators I got to meet and speak to over the course of my first con experience (which, incidentally, Petersen congratulated me on) and one of the people who made my convention great.

Before I get to the bulk of the convention, though, let's get the most important things out of the way first: I want to thank Peter Coogan, ICS and, most importantly, my co-panelist Mervi Miettinen (whose presentation on superheroes and the state of exception was, quite honestly, out of this world), for making my first experience at a comic studies conference great. I look forward to working with Peter again in the future, I hope to begin trading ideas with some of the other comics academics I met over the course of the weekend and I eagerly await seeing more bits of Mervi's dissertation. The conference itself was fantastic and, despite the small audience, it was clear that the people who were presenting were passionate about what they do and were willing to defend their work and, as an aspiring comics academic, it was heartening to see.

As for the rest of the convention, well, it occurs to me that replicating my whole con experience would be a little tedious and boring for the rest of you, and perhaps a bit ejaculatory for me- so I'm just going to give you a summary:

Creators Met: Brian Azzarello (who had been given a badge with the incorrect name and, apparently, had some trouble getting into con), Danielle Corsetto, Evan Dahm, Jeph Jacques, Lucy Knisley, David Mack, David Maliki!, Gordon McAlpin, Randy Milholland, David Petersen, Fred Van Lente, and, as mentioned the other day, Erika Moen.

Things Purchased: Two buttons (one Iron Fist, one Captain America, in addition to all the free ones DC was giving out), a whole bunch of comic books (including some just bizarre and awesome looking stuff), Lucy Knisley's French Milk, the first two volumes of Evan Dahm's Order of Tales, Comic Book Comics #4 (signed by Van Lente), Joe Kubert and Brian Azzarello's Sgt. Rock: Between Hell and A Hard Place (from the CBLDF, signed by Kubert and then I got Azzarello to sign it too) and a Captain America hoodie (which, although I won't share the story, was the most complicated clothing purchase I have ever made).

Free Stuff: Lots, including two posters for Clare. Archaia was giving away everything but the kitchen sink, it seemed like.

For my first con experience, it was pretty great- I hope to do it again, although I think spending two days there may have been too much.

See you next year, C2E2.

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