Chicken Showers and Cursmudgeons: Boston Comic Con 2016 Wrap Party / by tonymcmillen

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This was my 3rd Boston Comic Con and I did the worst I’ve ever done at this show.

I also had a fabulous time.

To explain: At cons I get a table, table costs money, most shows I make my “table money” back selling my books and prints and whatnot. Last year at Boston Comic Con I actually sold out of my book and made a nice stash of extra cash. I enjoyed this. This year I did just okay, made maybe 2/3rds of my table back but still, I had a good time.

I went home with ink stained fingers (a result of putting artsy smudges over my art) and still hating humanity but only as much as I love it.

Mostly I had a good time because I go to these things not just to sell my stuff and make my table money back at least (that is nice though) I go to get out of my fucking cave and see what my work does to people when they see it.

To see someone freak out over one of my prints, to watch them paw through my portfolio of originals and see the expression on their face change, to see it light up when they turn the page; to watch them read the back synopsis of Nefarious Twit and tell me, “This sounds great.” that’s the stuff I’ll go to conventions for.

I also go to talk to the rest of the folks who are busy practicing alchemy in their own caves. All my friends at Bad Kid Press who I share convention space with, all the talented creators who I’ve gotten to know in the Boston scene, all the pros who I get to talk shop or watch create on the spot; I learn something from everybody. And we find common ground.

Highlights this year for me:

Erik Larsen

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I’ve been reading Savage Dragon by Erik Larsen since it came out 20 years ago, met him once before in New York City, and this weekend my friend Jeff told me his line was finally gone at the end of the last day of the con so I frantically tried to draw my version of The Dragon for Erik to have but I kept screwing up the fin! So I went for one of my personal favorites from The Dragon’s rogues gallery (and an easy one to draw) and drew up Mr. Glum and me and Jeff walked over to Erik’s table and I gave him my scribbles. Larsen’s a totally nice guy, thanked me for it and asked me what pens I use and then talked to us about his own tools of the trade; even showed Jeff and I some of his pages and where he used his different tools.

This is a man who drew some of the first Spider-Man comics I ever read.

That’s why I go to cons.

Chicken Showers

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It was a very hot and sticky con this year, it was 95 degrees outside on Saturday in Boston, and we at Bad Kids Press might have had the hottest corner of the con (air conditioner was deader than disco hanging above us) so by the end of the day on Saturday I was a sweaty, hungry husk of a comic book creator. I take the train and then a bus to get home from the convention center so it’s about an hour and some change until I get back to where I live. I packed a nice little lunch for the con but didn’t have dinner at all so when I got home I immediately dropped all my art supplies, threw off my sweat-soaked clothes, tore open the fridge and grabbed a piece of chicken I cooked the night before and promptly took it with me into the shower and there, with no shame whatsoever, devoured it like some sort of feral, loofah using king.

Chicken showers are glorious; do try them if you have the chance.

This whole ordeal, this was a highlight.

Baby Groot is my Homie

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Guess what else was, I know a baby who’s become internet famous. My friends Dave and Tracie have a baby named Charlie and these cruel caregivers are constantly dressing up this little crumbsnatcher in various outlandish garbs. The child is too young to walk or voice his protest so he could not stop his folks from dressing him as Baby Groot from Guardians of the Galaxy. Photos were taken at the con and now Charlie’s beautiful mug has taken over the internet and has been featured on Entertainment Weekly and whatnot. Oh, and the director of the movie himself tweeted the pic of Charlie as a reveal of how Groot will appear in the sequel.

That, that is why I go to con.

Also, I was 5 feet away from Gillian Anderson as she walked past me.

That is why I do anything.

So I can tell my 14 year-old self, “Dude, you’re never gonna guess what happened.”

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