Busy as a bee

I am finishing up a bit of editing here at the Fortress, then heading into Brooklyn to hit a few book stores, check out a venue for a party, meet a friend for a drink, then come back home and get back to work.

In the past few days, I've spoken to several people who have contributed to the BOMC S. King Desk Calendar, that I'm working on this year, and their enthusiasm is inspiring. I can't wait for their essays to start coming in. This is a really exciting project to be working on.

I'd like to send a special shout out to good friend, Matt, who was the first to send in his essay. Nice job man! [That's Matt and yours truly].

Alright, it's back to the trenches for me. Until next time...


A Bloody Valentine.

Since my lady is out of the country at a family wedding, it looks like today after several hours spent with a rather large manuscript and red pencil [see - Valentine theme active], I will head over to the Isle of Staten and have dinner [translation = great outer borough pizza] with birth mother and female sibling.

Then after brainstorming & discussing details of the King calendar I'm working on with my greatest resource [said sister and absolute horror fan] we're off to see the newest Friday the 13th movie. We're just that kind of sick family. We want to spend this special day... with Jason.

Nightmares to come.

Sadly, some of the ad agency freelance work I had lined up dissipated. But that's quite alright as I have LOTS of reading to catch up on, essays to assign and write, and comics to pick up.

Happy bloody Valentine's Day to one and all!


No Empire Lasts Forever

The PublishersLunch daily email reported today that major changes occurred at HarperCollins, and it seems change continues to be in the air, reminding me once again the delightful reprieve of Comic Con is over. For more details see the link.

Also Reed [the company responsible for both NY and San Diego Comic Con] announced that BEA [Book Expo America - the annual trade expo for the publishing industry] will be in New York through at least 2011. It will be shorter as well, with the floor open for two full days with preliminary special events and various conferences the day before the floor opens.

To some this may not be good news, but for this independent professional, that makes it a bit easier attend as well as find "patronage" for a weekend badge in exchange for some of my services or assistance. I realize this is little comfort for those smallish publishers who struggle affording a booth in the Javits Center. But New York is the publishing capital of the world and I've attended whenever it's been here.

It remains to be seen how this news will be received.


NYCC 2009 is over. What a ride.

What a show. The con has come and gone and man, did it feel like it flew by. In years past I had the luxury of randomly wandering conventions, be it SDCC, Book Expo America or London Book Fair as a book club editor (i.e. - no booth), it was kind of like Kane in Kung-Fu. I'd walk around and get into adventures.

But as I learned last year while attending BEA in L.A. with Osprey and again this weekend helping out at the Titan Books booth... working a convention booth is a lot of work. And a lot of standing, incidentally. It's great to have a home base, a place for your bag of goodies and your coat, but working the booth, the boxes of books, the customers, etc. really wears you down.

Overall, the buzz I've been reading is the show was a success. Retailers reported in good sales which is uplifting to hear (because who can take the nightly news anymore, it's so depressing).

And today - Kid's Day - seemed full of little Spider-Mans and other assorted costumed mini-mates grabbing swag and books and just about whatever they could get their hands on.

I worked the early shift and when I left the Titan Booth, Dave Gibbons was about to start a signing of his Watching the Watchmen book. The line criss-crossed in front of the booth 3 times. I wanted to stay and help, but I was there at 9 a.m. man, my feeble feet needed a break.

I left the con with some great advance reading copies of books like Jackie Kessler and Caitlin Kittredge's new superhero novel, Black and White (which I can't wait to read and will review here!) as well as a few others which I'll write about as soon as I get into them.

My pal Peter V. Brett's signing went great (I've posted most of my con pictures on facebook) so here's a big HAPPY BIRTHDAY PEAT! His, The Warded Man, publishes in less than a month now - sweet!

I was happy and sad to help out for a bit on Saturday at the Comic Foundry booth (last issue out on February 18th...tears). But they've been great. I wish Tim and Laura the very best of luck with everything.

I wrapped up Sunday grabbing a few superhero gifts for the nieces and nephews... and okay, a few Revoltech toys for myself (come on, it is comic con). And in these hard times, if I can't share a little love with my friends with some comics, books, and toys - then what am I in this business for anyway?

Party on! And don't forget... the Watchmen are coming. 3.6.09


NYCC - Friday, mini-post and recap.

Yesterday was a blast at NYCC. It was great to see the place booming with activity in light of a stressed out economy. With Saturday passes and weekend passes sold out, that is a real sign that the comics industry is hanging in there.

Activity at the Titan Books booth was intense all morning during the professionals-only hours, then grew when the con opened to the general public. An early highlight for me was that I met George Perez, just a quick handshake but I'm a big fan. George is a legendary comics artist for anyone not in the know - and a really nice guy.

One thing that was surprisingly cool, aside from all the interest in Titan's various Watchmen books was the response to their Cream of Tank Girl book - released in October of 2008, some fans hadn't yet seen this and it's been flying off the table. I'm sure we'll be out of stock by the end of the show. I've captured a few fans as they purchased books [sorry gals, I didn't get any names but thanks for the photos]. Fotini and I are huge fans as well, & it's a beautiful book.

More to come tonight or tomorrow, I need to get ready for today at the show.


NYCC - Thursday, set up day

Yesterday was set up day for the exhibitors at NYCC. I arrived early and helped turn a few small palates of boxes and a dull looking booth...

- Into a great looking booth. The vinyl wall poster Titan brought over was awesome with images from all of their big recent & upcoming books.

Here is a photo of Steve Saffel and Tim Whale from Titan Books. I'm working with them, and set up with these convention veterans went well. We were like the A-Team, I even heard the theme song somewhere off in the distance.

Well, that's it for now, just a quick couple of snapshots [including this one of a giant-sized He-Man Faker statue... only at Comic Con]. As I have to get ready for opening day of the show.

I'll be sure to check in again after a full day. Stay tuned.


New York Comic Con this weekend

Set up for New York Comic Con starts tomorrow, and although it doesn't open to the public until Friday at 1 pm (open to anyone with a Professional badge early in the day Friday), I'll be there tomorrow to help set up and also working each day at the convention in addition to geeking out and checking out all the events, booths, books & toys that I can.

I've volunteered to work with my friends and former colleagues at Titan Books. Back when I was an SFBC editor, I used to buy some of the great books coming from Titan and I'll be glad to helping at their booth this year. Titan has some exciting books right now. Red hot stuff like the awesome, WATCHING THE WATCHMEN.

I'll be at booth #1514 each day until about 2 pm, if you're stopping by the con be sure to stop by and say hello. I'll be the slightly bearded fellow, in his element, with a big grin on his face. It is comic con after all.
They'll be so many cool events, panels, and signings going on all weekend. For a quick round up of highlights, check out Heidi's updates at The Beat (as always, she's got it covered).

Also, I must mention my good friend, and Del Rey's newest author, Peter V. Brett will be signing copies of his debut novel, The Warded Man, which publishes next month, at the Del Rey booth on Saturday at 4 pm. And if you're lucky, you may snag a convention badge promoting The Painted Man as Del Rey is promoting on the badges this year (see Pete's blog for more on this).

[All photos in this post are actually from the 2005 San Diego Comic Con, just trying to get into character].

DEAR CYBORGS by Eugene Lim, a little review

I had read a great little article on LitHub.com about this new novel from Eugene Lim and went to seek it out. Soon after I had acquired...