Tag Archives: Comics

The Dedicated Dead

What are you a fan of? Is there a television series, book series, comic, or something else that excites you like nothing else?

Just the other day, I was discussing this subject with a coworker of mine trying to figure out what I’m a big fan of.

I enjoy some of the suspected franchises. I’m a big fan of Star Wars. I’ve read several of the books, seen all the movies, been to midnight releases, and played some of the video games. I don’t collect memorabilia or create my own costumes though, and I couldn’t have an in-depth discussion on which sith lord is the most powerful and back it up with “facts” from the books or expanded universe.

I used to read comics. Judge Dredd, Batman, and the X-Men were my favorites. Still, I’d lose in any argument that requires more than surface knowledge of these characters. I enjoyed the comics, tv shows, and movies, but my level of interest only goes so far.

My entertainment interests are like a person called a “Jack of all trades, master of none.” I’ve got a great surface knowledge of most of pop culture, but the depth isn’t there. I have enough understanding to appreciate most new ventures, but lack the committed time to the deeper competency in the subjects.

However, through our discussion, I did come to the realization that I did have a pretty good knowledge of and committed interest in one brand or show: The Walking Dead.

I’ve watched the original show from the beginning. I remember when my wife and I eagerly awaited the first episode. I hadn’t read the comics before then (still have only read a few of them since) but the commercials for the show looked amazing. And zombies? Yeah, I was in! We’ve watched every episode since.

File_000 (4)I can tell you a lot about the characters on the show, their back story, their motives for what they do. I’m invested in them. When certain ones die, I’m crushed.

I own several pieces of merchandise from t-shirts to coffee mugs to pop figures. Last year my wife and I went on a trip to Savannah, GA and left a day at the end of our vacation to visit Senoia, GA where they film The Walking Dead. We spent an entire day in that little town, doing a guided walking tour, eating at Nic and Norms (a burger restaurant owned and ran by Norman Reedus, who plays Daryl on the show, and producer Greg Nicotero) and enjoying one of the coolest gift shops with a small Walking Dead museum inside.

So yeah, I guess I do have a pop culture franchise I’m all in on. What about you? What’s your guilty pleasure that you know way more than you should about? It’s ok, all are welcome to share here! Leave yours in the comments below and lets leave the judgement aside. I’m curious to know what else all of you enjoy.

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Eclipse Comic Con Recap

This past weekend (Aug. 10th-20th) I participated in the Eclipse Comic Con on the campus of Southern Illinois University at Carbondale. Tied in to the upcoming solar eclipse that crosses the United States on Aug. 21st with the point of longest duration just minutes from Carbondale, this event had a lot going for it.

Eclipse ComicConI’ve not done too many local events since I released my first book. I’ve been fortunate enough to participate in art and blues festivals out at Blue Sky Vineyards in Makanda, IL but this was my first big local event and I wasn’t disappointed.

I was set up next to another local author, Amy Hale, who I’ve met at Contamination in St. Louis in 2016. However I hadn’t really gotten to know her until now. We had a blast all weekend as we engaged new readers and got to talk with each other about our books and our journeys as writers. Her and her husband John are good people and I can’t wait to meet up with them at Penned Con in St. Louis.

The Con itself was larger than I expected. There were comic vendors, memorabilia booths, and I think five to six authors selling books or comics. We even participated in a panel on writing during the Sunday session. Authors Amy Hale, Kenny Sills, Cathy Jackson, Todd Black, myself and moderator author Brian Morris spoke about writing paths and fielded questions from the audience.

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My setup at the Eclipse Comic Con. My friend and cover artist Dan Brown was a few booths away working for our local comic shop and snapped the pic for me.

I knew going into the event I needed to sell 10 books to cover the cost of my table. I had that done within the first 2 hour of the event! That kind of early success calmed my nerves and helped me to enjoy the event quite a bit. Sales on the first day were more than expected, though on Sunday they cooled quite a bit. I’m ok with that since I was able to cover my costs and get my books in the hands of readers from all over the country as visitors to the region for the eclipse were in high attendance at the show. Because I live 15 minutes from the campus of SIU, I didn’t have hotel or travel costs making this Con a no brainer for me.

I heard by the end of the Con that organizers were fairly certain they’d be doing the event again next year. I certainly hope so. As a reasonably priced event with lots of potential growth, I’d easily add it to the list of events I plan on attending next year. Even without the eclipse drawing visitors to the region, I think the area can support such a Con.