ComiCON-versation #9: Be our guest…

by Mike Scigliano

— A guest list and the expenses associated with it, like everything else involved in producing a comicon, come out of your overall budget.  You’ve got to balance the books to make the show work.  Hotel rooms and airfare add up quickly and spending all your cash on guests but next to nothing on marketing or programming needs, for instance, could lead to a train wreck pretty quickly.

Column: Building The Con–A Different Take

If you’ve been reading Mike Scigliano’s Comic-Conversations columns you get some really good insights on what’s involved in producing a major comic con. Thanks to an invite from Heidi, I get to share the experience of a different kind of con.

When it comes to making the decision to produce a con, this is not something for the weak at heart more like it’s a challenge for the mildly insane…and worth every ounce of effort.

ComiCON-versation #5: It's all about the experience

There’s a point in every comicon production process where things get real. The utter insanity of what you have undertaken becomes concrete. Booking your first exhibitor is a great high. Each subsequent booking continues that awesome feeling of things going well. That is until you get your first email or phone call from an attendee. Once that happens there is NO going back. The cat’s out of the bag so to speak. It’s at that point that you come to the realization that what you’ve been working so hard on for the last few months is now out there for public consumption. It was a very surreal moment for Martha, Phil and I for sure.

ComiCON-versation #4: How do you pitch your show to exhibitors?

By now you’ve gone through all the hard work involved with the pre-production of your comicon. You have a venue and dates for your show. You’ve got a floor plan design that you feel happy about AND was approved by the fire marshal. The next step in the process is to begin to promote and pitch your show to potential exhibitors.

By “exhibitors,” I mean publishers, small press publishers, retailers, artist alley creators (artists, writers, inkers, colorists, painters, etc) and whoever else you feel might be a fit or want to exhibit at your comicon. For Long Beach Comic & Horror Con we place a specific emphasis on comics and their creators in our Artist Alley. That emphasis varies from comicon to comicon, of course, but for us it was a must.

ComiCON-versation Part 1: Meet the Show Manager

[With the comics convention/show scene exploding all around us, we thought it would be interesting to get a behind the scenes on how a show is put together. Over the next few weeks, The Long Beach Comic & Horror Con’s Show Manager Mike Scigliano will be explaining what goes into putting a con together, from floor plans to guest lists. Hopefully, it will give us all a little insight into the what is rapidly becoming most visible aspect of the comics world.] — Welcome to the 2012 convention season. Great shows like Amazing Arizona Comic Con, MegaCon, WonderCon and Emerald City Comic Con and C2E2 have already come and gone and we have a full calendar of fantastic shows still to come. Heroes Con, SDCC, Fan Expo, Baltimore Comic Con, New York Comic Con and Long Beach Comic & Horror Con. I’m the Show Manager for Long Beach Comic & Horror Con and we’re looking to close the season out with a bang.