Speculation: A Convention-Centric Self-Publishing Group

(This column is posted at www.StevenSavage.com, Steve’s Tumblr, and Pillowfort.  Find out more at my newsletter, and all my social media at my linktr.ee)

I attended Fanime this year and spoke on self-publishing.  I was overjoyed at the happiness people showed, the excellent covid precautions, and my own decreasing hypochondria in the face of large events.  I was also thrilled to have an insight I’d like to share with you, my audience.

As I have for I think at least seven or eight years, I hosted a Self-Publishing panel.  Though I had to do it solo due to the “crew” facing a number of life changes, I was quite pleased with it, and had a fantastic crowd.  At the end, I noted it would be great to see some of them again.

Then it struck me – conventions like Fanime that host many creatives should have their own self-publishing group operating outside of the con, like any other self-publishing group.

Imagine something operating like a typical writer/artist/publisher meetup.  People who already love the convention come together over their projects.  The support given ensures not just successful launches of books/comics/game, but also further builds the social structure of con attendees.  In turn when the convention rolls around, the group can speak on their successes, recruit new members – and maybe just get tables in the dealer’s room and artist alley.

Let me speculate on how this could operate:

  • It should focus on the convention, staff, and attendees.  I can see it expanding under some conditions, but should at least start that way.
  • It should have both virtual and in person meetings.  This way you build local connections but include out-of-towners.
  • It would probably be best official or semi-official as part of a convention.  It might have to evolve into that.
  • It should focus on getting works out.  Get people getting results.
  • It should work to integrate with the convention to run panels and events.

In time such an event could expand.  It could be based around several conventions in an area, or sister conventions further apart.  There could be several groups, based at other conventions, that team up at conventions.  More, tight, productive relationships would evolve – and we’d see some great stuff!

Now I wish I’d actually collected email addresses at the panel – I got stupid and forgot.  But maybe online or next year I can try that.

So I’d like to ask you dear reader, what do you think?  Drop me a line!

Steven Savage

Fanime 2019 Roundup!

(This column is posted at www.StevenSavage.com and Steve’s Tumblr.  Find out more at my newsletter.)

OK I was at Fanime 2019 and as usual, a quick roundup. This was pretty interesting.

DOMINANT FANDOM: My Hero Academia was seriously dominant in cosplay, Artists Alley, etc. It was clearly The Top Fandom in many ways that makes me recall stuff like Naruto or One Piece back in the day. However, I think MHA has a wider range of appeal.

OTHER FANDOMS: The Fate series had a large cosplay gathering, more than I recall seeing at Fanime before. I also saw a lot of Spidervese characters, with Spider-Gwen being the major character. Jojo seemed to be getting more representation, from all over the series. There were cosplays and stuff from all over, obviously not just anime.

SURPRISES: I saw an Outlaw Star group, and Yuri On Ice was still evident in cosplay and merchandise. Yuri On Ice made an impression (says the guy who watched it twice)

DEALER’S ROOM: Dealer’s room was pretty diverse. Fanime runs a good Dealer’s Room and there was merchandise from all over the fandoms and interests.

ARTISTS ALLEY: As noted, lots of MHA, mixed with other stuff. I also saw some artists who had radically different styles and takes on anime and game art.

PANELS: A few insights, but the panel selection felt deep:

  • Lots of Cosplay panels this year, including advanced techniques and personal branding.
  • There were a lot of fanfic panels, at various levels of interest. These were not just basic panels, but some got deep into craft.
  • Some panels on culture were interesting, from exploring odd theories around anime to queerness in magical girl stories. Very intriguing.
  • There were other in-depth panels like developing mobile apps.
  • My panel on Geeky Productivity was well-attended for a 10 AM panel, and the Self-Publishing panel was very well attended despite being across from a panel on branding (seriously). There’s a real interest at this con on skills, and I had people remembering me and others from before.

So that’s my experiences. If you attended, let me know what you thought!

I plan to be there next year, obviously, but I’m going to return with more panel and panel sequence ideas. There’s a real interest in heavy skill stuff there. If I can lecture dressed as an MHA character, it’ll have come full circle . . .

Steven Savage

Steve’s Update 6/3/2018

(This column is posted at www.StevenSavage.com and Steve’s Tumblr.  Find out more at my newsletter.)

Good day everyone, what’s been up this week?

So what have I done the last week?

  • A Bridge To The Quiet Planet: Did the final few tweaks before the last run(s).  Looking good – except for one or two “Exposition blocks” and some scenes I can condense.
  • Agile Creativity: I got my feedback!
  • Fanime: Fanime is done, I spoke, and I’m still tired.  Enough said!
  • Chores and Tasks: My plans to front-load my month getting stuff out of the way have worked well!  Really clears my head.
  • Newsletter: As you saw I have a new much friendlier format!

What am I going to do this week?

  • A Bridge To The Quiet Planet: I want to do a pass using my last reader’s feedback this week.  The goal is “can I do it in a week” which is pretty insane, but this is men.
  • Agile Creativity: I want to read my reader feedback, I may get to it.
  • Blogging: I have a new blog series on Brainstorm Books you’ll really want to read.  It expands my theories – and may become its own book!
  • Seventh Sanctum: I’m reconsidering some more things, like the goal of The Nexus.  Short form is I think I could do it differently, as I got some ideas at Fanime.  I may or may not get to my plans.

I’ve delayed my idea of bookblogging a bit until next week – just want to clear the project list this week.

– Steve