Convention Report: Wizard World Chicago 2016 (Part 1 of 4)
Wizard World Chicago (also sometimes called Chicago Comic Con) is a local show at Rosemont, Il, and one of the first comic cons I attended as an exhibitor. It’s undergone a lot of changes over the years, and continued to grow during that time. This year they invited me out as a guest to promote my comics, do some panels, and have a great weekend with them. It’s a four-day show, so let’s jump right into the events of the weekend. Check it out!
I took a half day from the office to show up for preview night, which started around 3pm. My buddy Russell Lissau (The Batman Strikes, Old Wounds) picked me up, and we headed over the con to set up our tables. We were in the same row, with me bringing up the corner, and our friend Steve arriving later that night to bridge the gap between us.
All set up and ready to sell comics in my amazing corner booth!
Sales on Preview Night were surprisingly good – about half of my daily average. Not bad for only a few hours of being open. Foot traffic was mostly light, but that could have been misleading because 1) there were three halls being used for the show, one for celebrities, one for artists and dealers, and a third for the online guests and photo ops; and 2) because the halls are so large.
We saw some of the regulars, like:
— James O’Barr (The Crow) who stopped by to chat about the con and some of the dealers in the hall (he was across from an animal sanctuary, which had an actual monkey!)
— David Mack (Kabuki), who was set up behind us and was putting up his piles of books and gorgeous art. One of the nicest guys working in comics
— Dean Haspiel (The Red Hook), a good buddy of mine and an all around amazing dude who has worked for Marvel and DC in the past, and now does creator-owned work that is extraordinary
— And many more!
Some friends from work stopped by the table with their families, and I talked to various fans (of my work from comics, as well as from Nostalgia Critic). Good times and good sales were had by all.
After the floor closed, Russell and I headed to The Ram – our nearby favorite pub / restaurant – and grabbed burgers and unwound after the first partial day of the con. Then Russell dropped me off back at the hotel and I went to bed, in anticipation of the excitement to follow.
Delicious dinner at The Ram