by Susan Quilty, author of The Insistence of Memory
Year 1 of All-Star Comic Con is a wrap. The weekend exceeded my expectations—and that’s saying something because I fully expected it to be an amazing experience!
If you missed it, All-Star is a new kid on the Northern Virginia comic con block. It’s a smaller, more intimate con that was created by a few dedicated men and a team of friends who believed in their vision. Those who worked on All-Star put their heart and soul into making it a fabulous experience for guests, vendors, artists, cosplayers, volunteers, and general attendees.
Full-disclosure: those friends are my friends. I was honored to be an All-Star Volunteer and hope to be even more involved next year.
Uncanny Nerd sponsored the panel room and our own Mike Slade hosted many great discussions, which will be available on YouTube!
Whether you were there to shop, meet the guests, attend panels, rock some cosplay, compete in the game rooms, watch late-night movies, or tear it up on the dance floor, All-Star Comic Conhad you covered.
But I want to focus on another aspect of the con experience.
All-Star is a smaller con with a strong sense of local community. Many of us who were involved in the con met through Comic Logic, an amazing local comic shop, and have spent the last year looking forward to All-Star weekend.
In a way, the weekend was like an adult summer camp. It was a place to hang out with so many friends (both old and new), while sharing a love of comics, sci-fi, and general geekery. There was an amazing energy where everyone was working hard on something they believe in, but also letting loose and having fun.
As a more intimate comic con, All-Star offered more time to chat with indie artists and vendors, whose creations are labors of love. Hearing how they got started was truly motivating and a great creativity recharge.
In her panel, Dichen Lachman (Altered Carbon, Dollhouse) spoke about how she finds it energizing to connect with local artists and fans at smaller cons as well. (I had my own exciting interaction with Dichen, who is a fabulously supportive and gracious person—but that’s another story!)
Now that All-Star has ended, my Facebook feed is flooded with pictures and posts about the amazing time that we had together. But the energy is fading. There’s a letdown in getting back to reality. The Monday after All-Star was a Monday that was more Monday than any other Monday before.
But maybe we can beat that post-con letdown.
Let’s use that recharged energy to start new projects and create new works of art. Let’s hold on to that sense of community by staying in touch on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and—yes—even in real life. Let’s make time to be creative and to spend time with friends.
Let’s keep a bit of that All-Star spirit alive until we meet again next year! Who’s with me?