Salt Lake Comic Con 2013
The inaugural Salt Lake Comic Con was a blast. I had a lot of fun seeing old friends, meeting new people, looking at people’s costumes, browsing the booths, and participating on panels. I’ve heard the convention sold over 50,000 tickets — which ended up being a problem on Saturday, as the building reached capacity and some people were forced to wait outside until others left. The good news for next year is that, according to a staff member I talked to, they plan to reserve the entire Salt Palace, which would double the available space.
A quick recap of the panels I was on:
- Paradoxes: The Trouble with Time Travel – We talked about time travel in movies, TV, and written form. I brought up the Novikov self-consistency principle, which is what would seem to prevent paradoxes even if time travel to the past is allowed by General Relativity.
- Ender’s Game: 30 Years of the Book and Comics to the Big Screen – We talked about the book and the upcoming movie. The Deseret News wrote an article about the panel, including a quote from yours truly.
- Internet & Social Media Tools for Writers & Artists – We talked about Twitter, Facebook, etc., and how to use them to promote yourself. I felt like I didn’t have as much to contribute as the other panelists, so I was relatively quiet on this panel, but I still got a few good points in.
- How to Win Writers & Illustrator’s of the Future Contests – We talked about the contest. I encouraged all the aspiring writers to commit to entering a story every quarter until they either won or became disqualified by having published too many stories.
- The Anatomy of Writing a Great Fight Scene/Action Sequence – We talked about ways to write action sequences. After several panelists had explained their knowledge of various ways to fight, I said, “I know karate, jiu-jitsu, kung fu, and several other names of martial arts.” That drew a big laugh from the audience.
- From Ripley to Buffy to Katniss: A Look at the Strong Female Protagonist – We talked about strong female characters, why we love them, and why they still seem to be less common than they should be. I mentioned that while growing up, when I ran out of Hardy Boys to read, I read my sisters’ Nancy Drew novels, then said, “I couldn’t help noticing that one Nancy Drew was as smart as two Hardy Boys.” That line was a real crowd-pleaser.
- How to Write Great Fantasy – We talked about the elements of good fantasy stories.
- Genre Bending: When Should and Shouldn’t Rules be Broken – We discussed what genre means, some of the pitfalls of mixing genres, and some of the advantages.
- Choose Your Own Apocalypse (Zombies vs. Robots vs. Aliens) – This panel was run like a game. One panelist was in charge of the robot apocalypse, one was in charge of the zombie apocalypse, and I was in charge of the alien apocalypse. Along with audience participation, we tried to convince the audience that our apocalypse would be the worst. The discussion was hilarious, and I think a good time was had by all.
Overall, I had a great time and I look forward to participating again next year.