Comic-Con International: San Diego

Thursday, July 15, 2010

If you're one of those people who try to contact a comic-book professional now and then and have somehow managed to escape all the pre-event coverage, I'll tell you now: You probably won't be able to reach him or her for the next week or so. A huge chunk of the industry is headed that way, much as I posted two years ago. Yes, it's a slight exaggeration. Some people are staying home to work, some people can no longer take the wild excitement and crowds, and some people ... Well, some people figured they'd still be able to get tickets at the door. And. They. Were. Wrong.

The rest of us have started to make lists of what we need to do before we head out. If you've never been there (or if you haven't been there for a few years), give special thought to:
* Footwear. You will be on your feet. Almost all day. Walking. Standing. Maybe getting stepped on. Wear comfortable shoes. If you have to wear high-heeled shoes at some point, have something more comfortable to switch into.
* Planning ahead. I have three Excel files of information and counting. I have phone numbers programmed into my cell phone and two back-up cell-phone batteries - but I should also print out the essential ones, because phones get lost and/or damaged. (A tip: Horton Plaza - a small trudge from the Convention Center - has lots of stores, and you may be able to replace lost or damaged items. But, yes, a trudge away.) The program is online; see what events you don't want to miss - and prioritize.
* Trying on clothes. Do they really still fit? Are you going to wear a costume? How hot will it be after you've worn it for three hours in a crowd? Speaking of costumes, were you planning to wear a costume that requires you to carry something in your hand for an entire afternoon so that you won't have both hands free at an event that is festooned with touchable delights? Layered clothes are best; nights and restaurants are sometimes cool.
* Audio-visual equipment. Got a camera? A recording device? Will it need extra batteries? See above regarding Horton Plaza.
* Cleanliness. Anina Bennett reminds me that a bucket of hand sanitizer would not be amiss. Seriously: Hand sanitizer can be the difference between coming back from a convention happily exhausted and coming back from a convention so ill that you are bedridden for the next week.
* Maps. The convention will provide you with a map of the convention facility (the exhibit hall is 12 acres of booths) and of some of the downtown. If you plan to go further afield, it's possible, but do take along a map. Oh, and if you're parking in a hotel lot, you may want to leave your car there and cab it wherever you go, because those lots fill up. Just saying.

What have I forgotten? Probably whatever is most important to you. It's not too late to start planning - but it soon will be.


Brent Frankenhoff July 16, 2010 at 10:49 AM  

A bag to carry your purchases in, preferably with a shoulder strap for that hands-free option. Also, protective supplies for the more valuable purchases or that sketch from your favorite artist.

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