A day out

Harley attacks

That’s an action shot – taken using my mobile phone – of the delightful Naomi Bomb, dressed as Harley Quinn, giving her bearded antagonist what for during UCD’s FanSciCon on Friday.

Stephen at work
Stephen Downey drawing

The event was a good day out for meeting my fellow comic book creators. In particular it was great chatting to Hilary Lawler and Deirdre de Barra.

After months of correspondence it was brilliant to meet Jennifer Wilde artist Stephen Downey for the first time. I got to see the physical inked and pencilled pages of Jennifer Wilde, as thus far it’s all been virtual. As lovely as it is to see the artwork online, it’s another experience to touch the pages, and see the full-size images properly.

From 11am – 1pm there were two panels: Breaking into comics and Collaboration between Writers and Artists. There was a small group of comic book fans at both events, and the discussions were lively with plenty of useful information dispensed.

Later on I had the good fortune to overhear Michael Carroll offer some advice to a person who wanted to write a novel. He compared it to swimming, and said ‘”You can read all the books on swimming you like and you can watch people swim, but eventually you have to get into the water.” Swimming is going to be hard at first, but it gets better with practice.

FanSciCon comics panel
Michael Carroll (2000AD), Ian Whelan (Sancho), Barry Keegan (League of Volunteers) and Rob Curley (League of Volunteers)

The venue had some drawbacks – the main room was incredibly noisy because of the gigantic video screen playing anime clips and music played at top volume, which meant everyone had to raise their voices to be heard. It wasn’t too much of an issue if you were only in the room occasionally, but it was a burden for anyone stuck at a dealer’s table attempting to speak to customers.

The attendance was pretty low, but I wasn’t expected big crowds. UCD could make this a great event if they ran it on a weekend with a touch more organisation and advertised it better outside of the university. I loved that there were Cosplayers about, because I always think they are a fun addition to an event.

Everyone was friendly, the weather was great and I had plenty of time to chat with friends and meet new people.

So, it was a good day out for me!