This past weekend I had the great honor and pleasure of being one of a handful of guests at the 2nd Annual Mississippi SouthernFriedComicCon held in Jackson, Mississippi. I had a great time. I got to see some old friends, meet some new ones, sat on a few panels, promoted my new work and even sold and signed some of it.
This was one of those shows that word-of-mouth got to me immediately after last years. Jackson has had a wide variety of comic and sci-fi shows through the years. My first knowledge of them, of course, begins in the 80s. I will admit that as a teenager and student in my 20s, the shows were fantastic. They offered competition for the local store (which was run by a not-so-nice clerk) on both a volume and price level.
Looking back, however, I realize that the shows were often very poorly attended and must have been depressing for any of the exhibitors. I do remember setting up in the early 90s as a guest and wondering where all the attendees were.
SouthernFriedCC is run by a group of folks who not only want to see the show succeed, but have a genuine interest and love for the medium (we can discuss all the pros and cons of THAT later! Ha) and want to share it with others. SFCC makes a concentrated effort to maintain a family friendly atmosphere, something that not all sci-fi and comic shows do. I applaud that effort and hope that others will do the same.
I went down to Jackson a day early and spent some time with my former roommates Ashley Koostra and Steven Butler. Ash has been in Jackson, I think, just about since the time we graduated way back when. Steven’s still down in south Mississippi. It’s odd how when we get together, it sometimes seems so little time has passed when we talk about the “old days.” Gee, I’m beginning to sound more and more like my parents every day.
Steven was obviously at SFCC, but so was Mitch Byrd, the other artist that “broke in” to the comic industry same time as me and Steven. I hadn’t seen Mitch since early 90s. Like most of us, he looked the same…a little heavier and a little greyer.
Of course, the promotion machine Andy Childress was there. I give Andy credit for a resurgence in comic arts in Mississippi…okay, maybe not for the resurgence, but for the promotion. Andy, who does bubbaworldcomix.com, is quick to contact every single Mississippi artist and comic creator he knows and let them know about any event in the state. If it were up to him, every one of us would be there at every single event.
Kevin, Shane, and Chuck (me with Chuck Jett pictured above at SFCC) and a whole host of others were also there.
The folks from Imagicopter were there in full force. I should blog about them sometime…cool idea. If I didn’t see you there, then you missed out on a fun time!
I’ll be doing a signing and reading at Davis-Kidd Booksellers in Memphis on July 6. Be there!