Friday, April 13, 2012

So last weekend I took part in a panel at Eastercon, the British Sci-fi con.  The topic was Comics outside the mainstream.

It was fun, the hour went really quickly and I didn't feel stupid.  The audience was good and no one was an argumentative sod, which was my biggest fear.  I kind of want to do a full write up, but I'm quite tired, as yes, I've been doing homework each night, having driving lessons and working. So here's a brief outline of what we discussed:

What 'mainstream' means - are vertigo comics mainstream?   has this changed over the years?  What constitutes mainstream in manga and manwha books?
Do people who read 'graphic novels' see themselves as in the mainstream or our of it?
is there a distinction between comic readers who read only superheroes, only vertigo, only graphic novels, or only webcomics - is one more mainstream than another?
What non-mainstream comics are out there for women?
How effective is marketing for women (and other) readers, and how women (and men) as readers react to the big 2  marketing to the 18-35 male demographic.
The (un)success of DC's Minx line.
We talked a brief bit about films of comics.
Where to find webcomics and what good ones are out there.

We also recommended quite a few books - I talked about Skal, Cinebook's entire catalogue, Bayou Arcana and Markosia publishing.  One of the other panellists recommended Fumi Yoshinaga's books, especially the restaurant manga (she also does good yaoi stories).  The moderator recc'd a comic version of Hamlet, which I can't quite remember the details of now.

Various audience members also recc'd comics, one of which was Gunnerkrigg Court which I keep meaning to read.

It was a lot of fun.  I'd love to do more panels.  I mentioned a I ran a couple of comic blogs but I don't think I namechecked New readers...starter here! Damn.  That was stupid.  I also didn't mention that I go to non mainstream comics for diversity in writing styles, story types and character types.  That was stupid.  Doh.

The same weekend I also met my fresh 3 week old niece and she's totes adorable :D  And sleeps most of the time (even more adorable) and didn't throw up on me (good child).

Hope you're all well out there in blog land.  This is the first time I've logged into blogger for a few weeks, and now I find it's got a new format.  I do not like this.  Bah humbug.  I just finished reading the new edition of Batman: No Man's Land - these new versions are collecting all the NML issues, unlike the first set of trades which only collected half of them.  This first volume is great.  I highly recommend it.  Now I'm gonna go read Gotham Central, which I just downloaded from Comixology. :D  All $79 worth.. eeeeek...

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