Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Can All These Conventions Co-Exist: Filip Sablik and Ron Marz Sound Off

Do you think the comic book industry can support two conventions on the same weekends, what are your plans for those respective weekends, and why did you choose to participate in whatever manner you chose?

Ron Marz (Witchblade, Angelus): I think when you have regional shows that are far enough apart on the same weekend, it's not a big deal. Emerald City in Seattle and MegaCon in Orlando are the same weekend, but they're literally on opposite ends of the country.

But having two cons in the same city, on the same weekend, like what's happening in New York in October, strikes me as ludicrous. The show at the Javits Center is established, well-funded and a proven success. It's grown each year. It's really second only to San Diego in terms of scope and importance. I have to think that's where most of the comic publishers and creators are going to be, including me. I assume the competing Big Apple show will offer an array of washed-up wrestlers and TV has-beens hawking autographed photos.

Filip Sablik, Top Cow publisher: I think it is possible for the industry to support two conventions on the same weekend, particularly if the conventions are serving very different regions (for example, East Coast show vs. West Coast show). Obviously it puts a strain on publishers to decide which show they are going to support. I'd hazard that most publishers only have one convention booth setup and limited convention staff so supporting two shows in one weekend is not something that's feasible. Top Cow is taking an aggressive convention stance in 2010 after taking a year of in 2009. In some cases we'll be able to support two competing conventions by exhibiting, in other cases we may opt to exhibit at one show and support a second show with a variant cover exclusive, door prizes or some other level of support. It all comes down to where do we as a publisher get the most value and maximize our interaction with existing and potential fans.


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