Magic City Comic Con 2015

An affiliate to Florida Supercon, Magic City Comic Con kicked off its inaugural events January 16th, 2015 at the Miami Airport Convention Center. Featured guest appearances included Karen Gillan (Dr. Who and Guardians of the Galaxy), Kevin Conroy (the voice of Batman in the Batman animated series), and the voice talents from the popular anime Attack on Titan, among many other wonderful celebrity guests. You can check out the full roster at the Magic City Comic Con site.

My boyfriend Nick and I attended the con on Friday especially to speak to some artists and writers but we also enjoyed seeing some other celebs and celebrity cosplayers (Colt Cabana, anyone?). Unfortunately, we didn’t take a lot of pictures. Continue reading

Have Fun at PalmCon

Going to PalmCon? Lucky you.  I won’t get to be there this year but I’ll be with you in spirit.
Going to a convention can be an overwhelming experience. There will be a lot of people and lots to do, so I’m going to give you some advice to make the most of your experience.

1. Take a Camera
PalmCon is going to have a costume contest and the ECTO-1 from Ghostbusters and the TARDIS from Doctor Who. Also there will probably be lots of cosplayers. In other words, lots of photo worthy stuff. Let us know what the coolest thing you’ve seen was, and I’ll put it up here.

2. Talk to the Comics Creators
PalmCon has a few really cool comic guests. One of my favorite artists, Ethan Van Sciver, will be there. Ask him if Cyberfrog is never coming back. I love talking to the golden age creators, like Allen Bellman, who will be there. They have great insight on the history of comics. Last but not least, the Indy guys! PalmCon is run by Cosmic Times, a local small publisher. Inverse Press and Creature Entertainment Studios will be there and a few more. These guys put so much work into their stuff. Check them out and give their books a chance.

3. Try Something New
If you’ve never been to the costume contest, go to that. Talk to the 501st or the South Florida Brown Coats, you may find a new side to fandom that you’ll love. Try a Roleplaying Game. There will be two tabletop roleplaying games ran there, DCC and Necessary Evil. They’re simple to learn, lots of fun and ran by two good guys I know.

But no matter what you do, just have fun and let me know how it went.

PalmCon and PBCLS: The Dynamic Duo

It’s that time of year again, time for PalmCon!  Palm Beach County’s annual comic book, anime, and sci-fi convention is back, and bigger than ever.  This year’s PalmCon will be held on Saturday, September 21st from 10am-6pm at the Palm Beach County Convention Center.  As always, your friendly neighborhood library system will be in attendance.  We’ll have goodies for the kids, including coloring pages featuring Super Dewey, a beanbag toss game, and more.  Stop by the Palm Beach County Library System’s booth dressed as your favorite character and show off your library pride.  We’ll be taking pictures throughout the day of attendees with their library cards.  Don’t have a PBCLS library card?  No worries, you can sign up for one right at our booth. Check out our PalmCon Facebook Event Page for all the details.  See you Saturday.  Excelsior!

So, You Didn’t Make it to Comic Con…

If you’re suffering from Comic Con envy this weekend, first, talk to a therapist before it gets out of hand.  Second, check out the thousands of great graphic novels, manga, and anime available at the Palm Beach County Library System.

If you need more San Diego Comic Con coverage, and who doesn’t, visit these great sites: comicbookresources.com, ign.com, or bleedingcool.com.

Also, don’t forget to check with your local comic shop to see if they’re having any SDCC related events this weekend.  Use the Comic Shop Locator to find your nearest shop.

 

Florida Supercon 2013

This weekend, while most of America celebrated its independence, a large section of South Florida descended on the eighth annual Florida Supercon.  From July 4th through July 7th thousands of comic book, anime, sci-fi, and even wrestling fans gathered for one of South Florida’s largest costume parties; oh, and also to meet some of their favorite creators and actors.  Throughout the weekend guests got to meet the stars of the original Mighty Morphing Power Rangers, the voices of Invader Zim and Gir, Kevin Smith and his Comic Book Men co-stars, and the voices of Finn and Princess Bubblegum from Adventure Time.  Notable comic book artist were also on hand, such as George Perez, Dave Gibbons, Paola Rivera and his father Joe Rivera, Nick Cardy, and Clay Mann.  Florida Supercon also allowed many local artists and vendors to showcase their work and reach a considerably wider audience.

I attended FSC on Friday with my wife and 8-year old stepdaughter.  We chose Friday because the three of us are avid Invader Zim fans, and on this particular day Richard Horvitz and Rikki Simons—the voices of Zim and Gir, respectfully—were holding a panel discussion.  Upon arriving, my stepdaughter (dressed in her Gir knit cap) and I sought out Gir himself, Rikki Simons.  After getting an autograph and picture, we were treated to a hilarious panel discussion that felt more like a sketch comedy routine.  When Richard Horvitz and Rikki Simons were done with their hour of silliness, it was time for the Power Rangers to take the stage.  Jason David Frank, the Green/White Ranger held his own panel discussion where he spoke about his early days with the Power Rangers, his love for his fans, and what it’s like to be the only original Power Ranger still donning the spandex.  Outside of the main hall other Power Rangers alumni were greeting fans and swapping stories.  FSC brought together Walter Jones (the Black Ranger), David Yost (the Blue Ranger), Barbara Goodson (Rita Repulsa), Robert Axelrod (Lord Zedd), and Richard Horvitz (Alpha 5).  As a kid I was always a fan of the Green and Black Rangers, so I was happy to finally have a chance to meet both of them.

The Florida Supercon also gave local artists a chance to shine.  The second floor of the Miami Airport Convention Center became Artist Alley, where artists of all kinds got to promote their works to a massive audience.  Two of my favorite local artists were Sugar Fueled and Cogs & Creatures, both of whom are Florida-based.  Sugar Fueled specializes in paintings featuring gothic figures surrounded by candy, while Cogs & Creatures creates adorable stuffed animals and pillows.  Though these two stood out to me, the entire Artist Alley was filled with incredibly talented people.

I also attended a small Q&A with comic book legend Nick Cardy.  Cardy was one of the original artists for Aquaman and the Teen Titans.  Cardy took questions and talked extensively about his service during World War II and which comics he enjoyed drawing the most.  While I met a comic book icon, my wife and stepdaughter were meeting the cast of Cartoon Network’s Adventure Time.  Jeremy Shada, the voice of Finn, and Hynden Walch, the voice of Princess Bubblegum, held a panel to discuss the show’s popularity and take questions from the legions of fans in attendance.  After addressing Jeremy Shada as “the guy in the orange shirt,” my stepdaughter (who is only 8 years younger than Jeremy) was told by the panel’s moderator that she could call him Mr. Shada.  My stepdaughter quickly said “no,” and went on with her question while everyone laughed at the short-lived prospect of a 16-year old Mr. Shada.

Before leaving the convention I got to meet Larry Kenney, the voice of Lion-O in the original ThunderCats.  He was there with his son, and the two of them were some of the nicest people in the world.  ThunderCats, along with Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, was the show that got me into cartoons and comic books.  As a child, my whole life revolved around ThunderCats: from action figures, to comic books, to bed sheets, you name it, I had the ThunderCats version.  On a day filled with nostalgic exuberance, this encounter stands as one of my favorite moments.

Overall, my day at the Florida Supercon was a blast.  Interacting with legends of the industry and fellow fans was delightful.  Perhaps the best thing about FSC is the sense of community it fosters.  Comic book fans young and old gather to discuss their favorite series, some of whom are even dressed as characters from various shows, comics, and video games.  The FSC is also a great place to discover new interests, from indie comic books to new anime shows.  Conventions like these are great for librarians, especially collection development librarians.  Librarians can see what people are interested in in order to build a collection that better represents today’s comic book fan.  Additionally, librarians can make contacts with local artists and performers for future library events.

If you were at this year’s Florida Supercon, please share your experience with us.  We’d love to hear what caught your eye, who you met, or what you were dressed as.

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Rikki Simons and a Young Gir

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The Black Ranger and me.

 

 

 

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Nick Cardy and Me

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Margaret Kerry, the real Tinkerbell

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The Ice King

Comic Convention Provides Exposure for a Library and Its Collection

From Library Journal, Sep 27, 2011

The people attending PalmCon: The Palm Beach County Comics Book and Collectibles Show held in Greenacres, FL, on September 17 had a chance to connect with the Palm Beach County Library.

The convention organizers had offered the library a free booth at the convention, and staff saw it as an excellent opportunity to expose the library’s collection to an audience that might not be aware of everything the library had to offer (such as ebooks).

“We were there to promote the library and give out information of what we provide, particularly our graphic novels, manga, and our anime club,” said Kelly Handy, a library associate, who was one of seven staff members who handled booth duties at the convention and circulated among the crowd of about 500 attendees.

Read more: Comic Convention Provides Exposure for a Library and Its Collection.

See our pics: PalmCon 2011

Mimi’s Fangirl Moment

 
Legends of the Dark Knight Panel
Legends of the Dark Knight from left to right: Brian Stelfreeze, Paul Dini, D. Clark, Neal Adams, and Tim Sale. Photo by Terry Bosky

 Greetings Toshokan readers. Long time no see! Last month, I went to Dragon-con. It was awesome, but by far, one of the coolest things I got to do was attend the Legends of the Dark Knight panel with great Batman creators: Neal Adams, Brian Stelfreeze, Tim Sale, and… Paul Dini! It was incredibly interesting. For example, did you know that Batman originally walked around in the daylight in his costume and no one thought anything of it until Neal Adams put him into The Brave and the Bold, effectively turning him into the Dark Knight that we know and love today? Did you know that Brian Stelfreeze’s original drawings for DC were rejected? Or that Terry is Batman? (Ahem, excuse me… Villains of Gotham, this is not the librarian you are looking for.) 

 But I digress, Paul Dini is the creator of Harley Quinn. If you read my bio, you’ll know that Harley Quinn is one of my all-time favorite villains!  I own every Harley Quinn comic ever written, plus the graphic novels. I even have a Harley t-shirt. Sadly, none of these made it up to the convention with me. Luckily, Terry gave me some lovely stickers with art by Mark dos Santos, and I got the autograph that I’ve been waiting for since Paul Dini spoke at ALA five years ago. 

 Also, I was dressed as Zatanna from Grant Morrison’s Seven Soldiers of Victory, and Paul Dini told me that he liked my costume!! He said that he was happy that Zatanna was gaining popularity because he’s got a Zatanna graphic novel coming out in March. I can’t wait to check it out…. And the coolness doesn’t stop there! Not standing two people behind me was Ted Naifeh of Courtney Crumrin and Polly and the Pirates. I totally clammed up from being surrounded by awesome. I turned to Terry and told him that I couldn’t visit Ted Naifeh’s booth in the Artist Alley because not only is he incredibly talented, he’s also incredibly gorgeous! 

Ted Naifeh: Author of Courtney Crumrin at Legends of the Dark Knight Panel

Ted Naifeh, left, at Legends of the Dark Knight Panel. Photo by: Terry Bosky

 

   Seriously, Naifeh is the author and artist of the Courtney Crumrin series—one of our Halloween picks. It’s a spooky series about a girl who goes to live with her eccentric uncle in the wealthy town of Hillsborough, but something supernatural is going on in the town and Courtney is determined to get to the bottom of it. Courtney Crumrin and the Coven of Mystics gave me nightmares about Rawhead and Bloody Bones, and my favorite character in the whole series is Wolfgang in Courtney Crumrin’s Monstrous Holiday.    

Then, there’s Polly and the Pirates. Polly and the Pirates is one of my favorite comics and with good reason. It’s set in a kind of steampunk London where everything is Victorian except the houses are all on boats and people travel by hot air balloon. It’s the story of privileged Polly Pringle who is kidnapped by pirates from her all-girls boarding school. The pirates believe that Polly is the daughter of pirate queen Meg Molloy and that she holds the key to finding Meg’s missing treasure. There’s only one volume in the series so far, but it’s a great read. I hope to see more!    

Naifeh paired up with Holly Black (one of my favorite young adult authors) to bring us Good Neighbors. I reviewed volume one a while back, and I wasn’t disappointed. We now have two volumes in the series. He also wrote Gloom Cookie with Serena Valentino. Gloom Cookie is a yummy collection of stories about goths: Lex, Max, Chrys, Sebastian, Isabella, and Damion. It starts out as drama surrounding romances at the local goth club, but spirals into the private lives of the characters which are filled with real monsters. It’s definitely a spooky read. Great for the upcoming season. I’m probably going to dress up as one of these characters for Halloween.    

Finally, we have Unearthly, a romance written by Naifeh with art by Elmer Damaso that is truly out of this world. Shy Ann starts dating the unattainable Jem only to discover that he’s not the guy that she thinks he is. She teams up with his over-bearing ex Rae to find out his shocking secret.    

With stories like this, it’s almost like Ted Naifeh sat at his desk and said, “Hmm, what would Mimi like to read today?” And since he’s so talented and so adorable, he can totally just ask me at the next Dragon-con… except, I’ll probably just blush a lot. ;)