Bennett's Blog

Phoenix Comicon 2015

Bennett R. Coles | June 8, 2015

Last week I attended my first Comicon. It was everything I imagined it would be, and more.

Four days of crowds, costumes, cat-calls, conference rooms, celebrity sightings and, apparently, comics. All in the desert heat of Phoenix.

I was privileged to attend as an author, and my publisher Titan Books made my new novel, Virtues of War, available at the Comicon bookstore a full one month prior to the official launch on June 30th. The salesman in me couldn't help but tell everyone that this was a "world premier exclusive" for Phoenix Comicon, even if my life really isn't that grandiose...

I was on five author panels, and meeting my fellow SF authors was no doubt one of the best experiences of the whole trip. It was great fun to compare techniques and experiences, and my summer reading list is suddenly a whole lot longer. But most of all, it was good to connect with other folk who do what I do. Writing is a solitary profession, and most of us aren't that sociable to begin with, so getting thrown together en masse and told to be nice to each other was a breath of fresh air from the daily, solitary seeking of my muse.

The cosplay throughout the Con was amazing, of course, and it demonstrated to me just how much schtuff is out there in the speculative fiction world. I certainly recognized many Star Wars characters, as well as various iterations of Doctor Who, and I'm pretty sure I know what Sailor Moon looks like now. But then there was all the other costumes - who on Earth were they? Sitting at an author signing, I discussed with delightful fellow author M.L. Brennan the need for an app where you can take a photo of a cosplayer and then your phone will tell you, based on, say, colours and silhouette of the costume, exactly who it is this cosplayer is dressed as. Somebody needs to make the app, please.

Wandering around the vast exhibition hall helped me to understand exactly what kind of geek I am. Everything for everyone was on offer, but I consistently found myself drawn to booths offering two kinds of things: Star Wars (of course) and little models of ships. My kids and their toys have been providing my Star Wars fix, but clearly I need more little starships in my life. Who knew?

All in all, an exhausting but very fun event. Highly recommend. Five stars. I'll be going next year.

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