Tuesday, April 07, 2009

The comic book show

Several times a year we pack our toys and head out to do a show. Sometimes it's a one day show, sometimes it's a couple days. This past weekend it was the Emerald City ComicCon in Seattle. It's a BIG show and it lasts all weekend. Lots of artists come to talk to the fans and sell drawings and push their new comic books. Celebrities, like actors from Star Wars, Battlestar Galactica and Serenity come to sign autographs and pose for pictures. And dealers, like us, set up tables and sell goodies to the fans. A fun (and profitable) time is had by all!

It is a lot of work to pack up our stuff and haul it 300 miles away, set up displays, and haul it all home when it's over, but it's worth doing, and it's kind of fun too. We enjoy all the customers we get to meet face to face, since we are a mostly mail-order business. I particularly enjoy seeing the people who come in costume. It's a lot of effort to come up with even the simplest costume, and I admire folks who put out the effort. Some of them show up in incredible detailed outfits. They don't always pull it off perfectly, but if I can look at them and know what they were going for, I think they've done a good job! Oh and the T-shirts! It seems like every year I see about a dozen T-shirts I would LOVE to have, I always wonder where they find them. The net, of course. Here's my favorite from this year click here

The other cool thing about the comic book show is just being completely immersed in this group of people who are so diverse, yet all share common interests. You see every kind of person at these shows, from families toting kids around to old folks, from extreme geeks to punks with green hair. Lots of tatoos and piercings as you might expect with people who are so into art and fantasy. These things all seem to go together. Plus we can chit chat about stuff like who's going to be the new Doctor (Doctor Who) and we're all on the same page. I think they always wonder if we just sell the toys or if we're into it - we're into it.

So it was a crazy weekend. Drove to Lacey, WA, dropped off the RV at the campsite, drove the rest of the way to Seattle. When we set up the booth it seemed like the toys would never all fit, but a few hours later the toys were on display and the extras were tucked underneith the tables. Then we drove back to Lacey (stopping for dinner along the way), and spent the night in the trailer. Why do we camp in Lacey when the show is in Seattle? Because there's an Airstream club campground there that is only $18 a night, which is SO much cheaper than getting a hotel in Seattle, and we know the trailer is safe there all day while we're working the show.

We got up at the crack of dawn the next morning and drove back to Seattle. Ran the booth all day and it was crazy how much stuff we sold - people were shoveling money at me so fast sometimes I didn't even know what they were buying! Dave spent the day running around and restocking form the overstock we'd hidden under the table. By the end of the day the booth was picked clean of good stuff. So we headed back to Lacey, stopping for fast food along the way and eating on the road, picked up the trailer, and headed home. Got home about 11pm, dropped off the trailer, packed more toys for the show, got to bed about 1:30am and slept a few hours.

We got back up at 4, left the house by 5, back up to Seattle, loaded in the new toys, got everything displayed just in time for the doors to open. Ran the booth all day Sunday, not quite as busy as Saturday, but still busy all day long, I barely had a break to leave and go peek at the celebrities! Packed the van with the leftovers, and hit the road for home. Makes for a fun, profitable, but very busy weekend!

Many thanks to our friends who ran the retail store for us while we were gone, and our petsitter who takes care of the critters when we can't be there!

1 comment:

annaliese said...

wow! that's quite the weekend! my favorite comment in this post...'we're into it'. lol! I love that you are ~ :)