Today was the first day of Dublin Comic Con 2015 and my first time going to a convention full stop as a person selling stuff to the convention population. I wasn't really sure what to expect if I am being honest. I've been to cons in the past, game ones mainly, and last year attended Dublin Comic Con. So I at least knew about the costumes and the people with personalities buzzing with energy.
But as a person selling stuff: no idea.
As it happens I learned a few things at the con today.
So, as the lady friend will attest to, I am not the biggest believer in my own work. I don't know what it is and I have spoken about it before on The Bauble, but basically I am my own worst critic. This means that when it came to ordering stock for the con I was a glass half-empty kinda guy. "Nobody is going to buy my crap!" I declared to the lady friend after she suggested I get an order of one hundred books, fifty of each, for the con. After some conversations back and forth we agreed that maybe twenty five of each book would be better, safer even.
Turns out I should have gone with the first number. I walked into the convention centre today with fifty books to sell. At the end of the day I had seven to sell. With another day of the con to sit through. I mean...how daft was that. Turns out people will buy books from a nobody if they like the sound of the book. It turns out that if you have a good deal on the day, people will purchase it.
It turns out people actually do want to read stories about a fairy detective solving magical crime.
Lesson is over order the damn books for next year. What doesn't get sold can be stored for the next con.
Through a bunch of events I was solo at the stall today. Not that this was a huge deal for me, I generally can handle being on my onesie without any bother. Plus the years doing standup comedy have allowed me to develop a "talk to the wall" ability, handy when you need to take with a stranger or twenty.
But when I was going into the centre today I figured that having buddies with the other stall runners around me wouldn't be the dumbest thing in the world to do. Just turns out that the person beside me had the exact same idea. We hit it off fairly handy, joking back and forth. Sharing some tips on our various wares. Watching the gear and what not. To be honest it really did make the day go a lot quicker. During those moments of nobody standing at our table we just had some banter. If anyone reading this ever ends up running a stall at a convention of any sort, make buddies with the stall runners near you.
Great friendships have been forged over less.
Con Stall Rules
This isn't something set in stone, but it bears mention. The guy beside me had been at five conventions before today and over that time had come up with a list of rules. Now, these rules are more like the rules out of "Wedding Crashers", i.e. a random number was assigned to a sweeping statement. However the rules made a lot of sense. They were hilarious, sure, but still there was a nugget of logic behind each of them.
Erik Larsen is a gentleman
Last year there was only one person that I was bothered getting a John Hancock from. This year it was the same. It just turned out that the person I wanted to get something signed was sitting directly behind me. Without any bother to him at all he turned around and signed my comic, even though there was a line of people at his stall at the time. Then when he came back from lunch he stopped to talk with me and see how my day was going. This is a guy who founded Image Comics, talking to a ginger lad from Lucan.
I was interviewed twice during the day. The first time was for the radio and if you listen to Newstalk on Monday at around nine in the morning you might hear my Dublin tones infect your ears. The second time was by these people who are making a documentary about comic conventions in Ireland. What did I learn from these two events?
I need to get my shit together.
I waffled like it was going out of fashion. I have stood on stage in crowded pubs with strangers and rattled off jokes no bother. Yet when I am asked about a subject that I am a bloody subject master on, being that I invented the subject of Filthy Henry, I sound like a drunk who has learned English by accident. Next time I am going to have flash cards and just read off them.
Easier that way.
Overall though, as a first con selling my books, it couldn't have gone better. True I have only seven books to sell tomorrow but sure if I didn't then some of this entry wouldn't have been as entertaining to read .
Harly | Sun, 09 Aug 15 11:21:11 +0100
Haha Very cool! Nice reading!
Haha Very cool! Nice reading!