So today starts the seventh New York Comic Con.  Unlike San Diego, it’s still not too difficult for a company to rent a booth on the show floor.  (When the show map app went live a week ago, there were about an aisle’s worth of empty booths available.)

The My Show Planner is quite an amazing tool…you can search by exhibitors (companies and artists), tag the name, and the app automatically highlights the location!  So I methodically searched through the alphabet, and discovered some interesting exhibitors not usually seen at Comic Con.  Such as…

The Doctor Who Store, at booth 140.  (Wouldn’t it be cool if they had a pop-up store which moved from booth to booth each day?  Maybe one day it’s not in the hall at all, but on the concourse, or a parking lot!)

There’s a lot of mainstream publishers at this show, which isn’t too surprising, as:

  • Most publishers have their offices in New York City
  • Most publishers exhibit at BookExpo America each year, which is held at Javits and run by Reed Exhibitions, which is a corporate cousin to Reed Pop.  (Lance Fensterman used to run that show.)
  • Most have been here multiple times.

But there are some newbies.

Zondervan, over at booth 825, is an evangelical Christian publisher owned by HarperCollins (which is also here, at booth 1004/1005).  They do publish graphic novels, so they’ll probably feature those.  Perhaps also some fantasy and science fiction.

Taschen is a well-known publisher of art books on a variety of topics, many of them counter-cultural.  Located at booth 949, they’ll have some interesting books.  Benedikt Taschen, the founder, got his start in the business running a comics shop in Cologne, Germany, when he was 18, in 1979.  They’re known for their luscious historical books, like the new James Bond Archive.  Perhaps they’ll tease the new, affordable editions of  75 Years of DC Comics. The Art of Modern Mythmaking.

Andrews McMeel has been at NYCC before, but comic strip publishers tend not to appear at comic cons.  (Does the riff stem from the testimony given at the juvenile delinquency hearings in the 1950s, when the National Cartoonist Society disassociated themselves from comic books?  There’s no comic strip award at the Eisners…)  Anyway, I’m a fan of all comics, so I’m featuring them here!  They’ve got some great autographings scheduled at booth 821, and publish lots of books sure to appeal to fans of all ages.

Barnes & Noble?  Up front at Booth 1112?  Wow.  No idea what they’re promoting, but it’s probably to do with the nook tablets and e-readers which are the focus of corporate strategy.  (Sorry, I’m under “Fight Club” rules.  I don’t know nothing.)

Back when Tokyopop exhibited at NYCC, Borders partnered with them to run the retail component of their mega-booth.  I’ve also seen Borders appear at various science fiction conventions, which is great outreach… you sell some books by the featured guests, you advertise your store to locals who are active bibliophiles, and all you need is some event staff.  Eight hours a day for the show… easy to handle.

For Barnes & Noble, what would be awesome would be for them to set up a pop-up bookstore at the show.  A mini-cafe (serving Starbucks coffee!), free wi-fi, author events, kids events… basically everything offered at the regular stores.  You advertise the store, you advertise the website, you advertise the brand.  It could easily fit inside a truck trailer, maybe use two if you plan on selling lots of books.  Place it over in that big empty space by the 1E escalators.  They’d make a profit just by serving the journos!

Crafsman is over at booth 2046, between the computer geeks at Microsoft, and the comics geeks at Marvel.  They’re doing a promotion with DC Comics, creating a new character named The Technician.  According to that website, there will also be a photo booth.

And finally… Delta Airlines?  Hmm… they were placed at Booth 3138, but the planner now shows that to be empty.  Delta is the official airline of New York Comic Con, so NYCC probably gave them a complimentary booth, but Delta had no idea how to promote the company, or didn’t feel the cost of exhibiting was worth the reward.  I’ve got nothing against Delta, but I’ve been a fan of Southwest ever since 1995.

Heidi already discovered a press-on nails exhibitor, but I can’t find them on the planner.  What unusual exhibitors and hucksters did you see at Nerd Homecoming?


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