Monday, October 10, 2011

APE 2011: My mini comic haul!

This was was my first time attending APE (Alternative Press Expo) and it was a blast! For first day of the show I primarily spent my time soaking everything in. I'll be honest, for the first couple hours I was a little overwhelmed. Unlike San Diego, where I have a plan of who and what I want to see, at APE I really had no idea what to expect. The hall was filled cool looking books and great artists, almost none of which I had heard about before! Everything was new and exciting. I didn't wind up buying much on the first day, but on the second day I really took my time browsing through tables. By the end of the weekend I had a stack of books I couldn't wait to read!

Now, over a week later, I still haven't read everything but some of my favorites so far are:

Zebratron: A weird, stream of consciousness mini-comic that is hilariously bizarre. Almost every panel contains a little comedic gem.
Pope Hats: A neurotic main character who gets visits from an imaginary talking cheese stick.... it's really funny.
Crime World: A dry, dark comedy about a man who does bad things. It's like a cutesy version of "In Cold Blood"
Malaise Trap: A well told, first person narrative about an obsessive collector.
Danger Country: The first chapter of an epic fantasy adventure.
Tales of Good Ol' Snoop Doggy Dogg: A small collection of comic strips about dreams the cartoonist had containing Snoop Dogg.

I still have a lot more to read, but overall the books have been great. They're full of unique points of view, interesting stories, and cool art; they're definitely not your average comics. Go check 'em out!

Wednesday, October 5, 2011


Ever had a conversation with a friend or stranger where they ask you, Where were you on this day? I have a very selective memory. Which reminds me of that time of I had to get a tutor for history class--I'm that bad with dates. But this particular blog entry is to etch this day of a specific memory. And yes it relates to comics.

Last weekend I went to APE (Alternative Press Expo) in San Fran. I crammed a bunch of my freshly printed mini-comics into my bag, hoping to trade with others like me, and jumped onto a plane.


I got to the Concourse and felt right at home. The whole vibe was welcoming and not at all earnest, as I thought it would be. Creators were enthusiastic about their work and I talked to them, genuinely interested in what they wanted to share.

The space was pretty big so Rob, our friend Jared and I took a break out on the steps. I was eating my banana when I heard my name. Who else knows me here? I looked up and saw Mary. She was in my class at Meltdown Comics. She had finished her comic about her battle with cancer. I remembered reading panels from her story and thinking, wow, she's got guts to publish something so personal. As a survivor, she was able to convey the heartbreaking and sometimes hilarious moments of therapy.

We exchanged comics and she tells me, "Giulie, we have a table. Jim was able to get a table for the Meltdown students. Go and put your comic there to sell." So I did.

Later that night I went to a party/mini-comic award show at Isotope. I actually got face time with The Mad Scientist, aka the larger-than-life owner, James. I asked him if I can sell my mini-comic in his store. He agreed, asking for ten copies. Dammit, I only had four left in my bag. He laughed and paid me nonetheless. It went under the New Arrivals sign. Ego boost for me!

After schmoozing and grabbing a celebratory drink, I passed out at the hotel. Come Sunday morning er afternoon, we went back to the Concourse. I went to the Meltdown booth to help out. I made a few sales. Getting money from strangers is awesome! It's completely different than getting it from friends. I think the highlight was when a guy was interested in a copy of mine and asked me to sign it. Cool!

SFO ---> LAX

I got on the plane headed back to LA, feeling great. A few days later I heard news from home.

Today will be remembered for two things. The day that Steve Jobs died of cancer. And the day I found out my dad has cancer.

The way I see it, success no matter how small, is very personal. It is further defined by the people you love. My dad hasn't seen me this type of happy, yet. But he will though. And I just sealed an envelope containing copies of By The Slice.

Next stop:
LAX -----> MIA