I’m tabling with my sorry ol’ comics and my sorry ol’ ass and some sorry ol’ art prints at “AnaCon,” a totally FREE comics & science fiction event at the Anaheim Public Library. It’s happening this Saturday, March 16th, 11am-4pm. I am also moderating a panel on how comics & sci-fi can help engage reluctant readers. Featured panelists: Kelly Powers (AUHSD classified librarian), Emily Otis (APL), and Brianna Meli (APL). I have no idea how to moderate, having never done that before. At least, I don’t think I’ve done that before. At this point, I’ve done a lot of conventions and it all begins to blur. Will I do an okay job? Who knows? I hope so.

I’ve been to AnaCon before, and it’s a nice local event with plenty to see. People in costumes, if you’re into that. Sci-fi author Tim Powers will be there, and he’s great. One of my favorite sci-fi authors, in fact!

WONDERCON 2014 : Queer Directions panel

     Ed Luce (co-panelist) was kind enough to post a link to this article on Facebook, in which the journalist paraphrases our gay panel. Some of it is a little not-exactly-correct, but it's close enough and they said some very nice stuff about the panel overall. Too bad the photos weren't taken from a higher angle, and too bad they didn't use special flattering lighting on me, and maybe a wind machine. And vaseline on the lens.


The innocuous front side of the nameplate
     Just finished 2 days at WonderCon 2014 in Anaheim. Love having it in our hometown.
     Prism Comics asked me to be on a panel discussion called "We're Here, We're Queer, Now What? New Directions in LGBTQ Comics," or something to that effect.
     I've been on numerous panels at comics conventions since I started doing comics back in 1999, but this is the first time I've seen a warning on the back of my nameplate. Well, not just mine, everybody's had this on the back:

     The moderator had mentioned the "18 Warning," or else I might not have noticed it. I think it was on the back of ALL the nameplates for the entire convention, I don't think it was just for the GAY panels. But it's stupid, right? It doesn't even specify what it's supposed to mean. It doesn't say don't cuss, or don't show dirty images, it just says " AWARE that many members of your audience may be under 18 years of age." Well, no shit. I'm aware. So fucking what?
     But because of that stupid warning and my "awareness" of it, I was saying something in response to the moderator's question, and instead of saying, "fucking" like I had intended, I stammered out the awkward, "effing." Which I hate. Hate it when people puss out and substitute that. It's not like anybody of any age is going to be unaware that it stands for the real F word.
     Sigh. Whatever. I think I said "shit," and maybe even blurted out an entire "fuck" during the panel. I just thought it was funny more than anything, having that impotent little warning staring at us, begging us to think of the children.
     The other 3 creators on the panel were talking about graphic lesbian sex, gay "bear" culture, bisexualism and various other things some people might find taboo. But we were all "aware." ;)
     I don't think we should shelter kids from the idea of free speech, right?
     After my brain has settled a little, I might post more details and thoughts on the convention. It was really fun, especially since we hadn't been to a comics convention in a few years.

     In case you're wondering, I was on the panel with the following creators:
Josh Trujillo
Ed Luce
Shayna Why
Roger Klorese (moderator)


     I'll be at WonderCon with my comics/graphic novels/Glitter Gaybies/Smells Like Library!
     On Saturday I'll be signing at the Prism Comics booth from 1pm-2pm. (Also probably on Sunday after the panel discussion)
     On Sunday I'll be on a panel discussion, and here are the details:
We're Here, We're Queer, Now What? - New Direction in LGBTQ Comics
Sunday, 4/20/14, 11:30a.m. - 12:30p.m.
Room: 210A
More lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender characters are making their mark on all corners of the comics world than ever before.   How do LGBTQ comics creators push the boundaries in a world where acceptance is more the norm?  Join creators Tommy Kovac (Skelebunnies, The Royal Historian of Oz), Ed Luce (Wuvable Oaf), Josh Trujillo (Love Machines, Anything That Loves), Shayna Why (Overshare Party) and others to be announced as they explore new directions and neglected subjects in LGBTQ-themed comics, how technology is changing the way people relate to each other and new methods of publishing comics.  Presented by Prism Comics and moderated by Roger Klorese (Board Member, Prism Comics).

     Spoiler alert: I have no idea what the new direction is for LGBTQ comics. North?

IN THE DREAMHOUSE : Teacups with George and Rene

Not quite what it looked like in my dream, but actually cooler. This is the Teacup ride at Disneyland Paris, and doesn't it look awesome?!

     I had a dream that I was riding the Teacups with George C. Scott and Rene Auberjonois, and some girl from Ohio.
     It was kind of an anxiety dream, because at the time I was riding the teacups I really should have been packing back at a hotel Anthony and I were staying in. I've stayed at that hotel before in my dreams, it seems to be a consistent part of my mind's dream geography.
     We were there for some sort of comic book convention. It was the last day, and we were going to just get up and drive home, but I slept through my alarm and woke up at 3pm, totally missing checkout time, which was at noon. For some reason, we were staying in separate rooms, and of course MY room was a shocking mess of trash and clutter. Food wrappers, coffee filters with loose grounds lying all over the floor, photographs, bags of comic books and toys I'd been buying at the convention all over, bags upended and contents strewn. Clothes lying all over the room in heaps and tangles. I stared at my mess in despair, then began frantically trying to get it all cleaned up and packed.
     When I first woke up and realized the situation, I couldn't remember Anthony's cell number, and was panicking because I needed to call him and wake him up, too. I had a new cell phone and couldn't figure out how to use the contacts/address book, I just kept pushing buttons and trying to find Anthony's info in the stupid phone. Don't know why it didn't occur to me that I could just walk down the hall and bang on his door. Then I realized that the key to my room also fit his door, and it was in my pocket the whole time.
     In the way dreams work, despite the panic and anxiety about getting packed and leaving, and getting Anthony up and moving, I ended up wandering off to the Teacups, which were not affiliated with Disneyland, and were instead part of a themepark/carnival connected to the hotel.
     A friend of ours from Ohio was getting onto the ride with George C. Scott and Rene Auberjonois, and I just had to say goodbye to her, since Anthony and I were having to rush off.
     I jumped into their teacup, excusing myself for the interruption, but explaining how we'd woken up late, missed checkout, and needed to get the hell out of Dodge and on our way home. George and Rene were very nice about it.
     The girl from Ohio was excited because she was planning to move out to California where all the cool stuff is, and then we'd get to hang out more. I acted excited about that prospect, but was thinking that she would probably be annoying in longer doses.
     Before I could finish saying my goodbyes to the girl from Ohio, the ride started. George and Rene didn't seem to want to spin the wheel and make us go faster. I offered to do the spinning, but they hemmed and hawed. They're pretty old, you know.
     I woke up before the ride was over.