First Second doesn’t typically exhibit at SPX — they’re a whole four hours away, and by car! How would we even get there? (That is an obviously facetious question.) But our designer, Colleen AF Venable, and I went down to the show this year.
I was only able to attend SPX on Saturday, but in general had a delightful experience — the new, larger exhibit floor was both newer and larger. And it was packed with people that I kept accidentally knocking into (sorry, people!). That’s always a good sign for a show!
I feel like my convention experience this year basically went like this:
1. See people we work with at First Second.
2. Talk to people we work with at First Second.
3. Go away.
So, lacking an incisive analysis on this (the people I talked to seemed to be doing well! Mostly I already knew this, because they are people we talk to on a fairly regular basis), here are some pictures.
Our designer, Colleen AF Venable, was the other First Second personage at SPX. Together, we made a team that could instantly marketingly-design anything in sight! . . . . okay not really.
Zack Giallongo, the author of our upcoming graphic novel Broxo, exhibited at the show and showed off some color prints of characters from his upcoming book. As you can see from the art, it’s full of warrior princesses and dragons and things! We’re very excited about this book.
And here is Zack. As you can see from his laid-back, casual demeanor in this picture, he is also super-excited for his upcoming debut graphic novel Broxo. Just, excited on the inside! You know how it is.
And here is Broxo itself! Zack was doing a crazy finding-kittens-at-SPX give-away so that fans could win a free advance copy. I would also like to find kittens at SPX, though I do have an advance copy of this book already.
Here’s Dean Haspiel, with our author Joe Infurnari, holding up a copy of his recent First Second book Marathon. It is full of running, and many people die horribly! Good times.
It was great to get a chance to see Nate Powell, the illustrator of our recent graphic novel The Silence of Our Friends, at SPX this year! You can also see in the back right of this picture a copy of The Year of the Beasts, which Nate illustrated for Cecil Castellucci. It’s published by our parent company, and is a really interesting book!
This is a picture of some of Nate’s art from The Silence of Our Friends — I’m amazed every time I see it. His stuff looks so wonderful!
It was good to get a chance to say hi to Nick Abadzis, even if he does live on my train! Here he’s signing a copy of his graphic novel Laika. It’s such a great book! If you haven’t seen this one before, you should check it out.
MK Reed has been gallivanting all over the US for the past few months, so I think the last time I saw her was in Anaheim for the American Library Association conference in June. She’s gearing up to start celebrating Banned Books Week at the end of this month, as her recent graphic novel Americus was all about book-banning. The graphic novel recently received the Carla Cohen Free Speech Award, which will be presented at the end of this month at the NAIBA conference.
MK’s working on yet another book for us — can you guess what it’s called from the image above? The Cute Girl Network will be co-written by Greg Means (of Tugboat Press fame), and illustrated by Joe Flood. It’s going to be awesome! There is soup in it. And that’s all I’m telling you for now; you’ll find out more soon, as the book will be out next year.
And here’s Greg! One of the most interesting parts of the show was when he gave me one of his autobio-ish comics, which I am in! Possibly this is the first time I’ve been in a comic — it’s like your whole life turns into some sort of meta-escapade. Craziness! Anyways, in this picture, you can see that Greg is thinking deep thoughts about his upcoming graphic novel (possibly even thoughts full of soup).
Lucy Knisley is the author of another of our upcoming titles — Relish: My Life in the Kitchen. It’s coming out in April, and it’s going to be super! I suspect there is also soup in this book, though that is not a theme of our next year. I swear. Lucy reports that she’ll be exhibiting at SPX next year, copies of Relish in hand!
You guys may not know Luke Pearson, the author of Hilda and the Midnight Giant, because he is from the UK and published by Nobrow, which somehow doesn’t get everywhere in the US. However! Hilda and the Midnight Giant is awesome (our editor Calista Brill recently called it “a unicorn chaser”) and you should all go out and buy it at once. It was great to meet Luke at SPX, as he’s doing a story for our upcoming book that’s a companion volume to Nursery Rhyme Comics. More on this to come — and this guy is so talented, clearly he’ll be all over the place in the next few years.
Leo Geo (a crazy graphic novel filled with science and published by our parent company, Roaring Brook)! This book is super-crazy, as is its delightful author, Jon Chad. Jon came down to SPX from the wilds of Vermont, where he teaches at SPX, and he had special SPX-only possibly-handmade printed paper bags for anyone who came to buy Leo Geo from him. How cool is that? And there are going to be even more of these books — I’m excited.
And another cameo from an author from our sister company — Jay Hosler, whose book Evolution came out from FSG’s Novel Graphics line. Not pictured in this picture are the pages from Jay’s upcoming book, which is full of bugs (who possibly have laser-beam-eyes!). It looks wonderful.
Then I went and had falafel (in the cooking of which some kind of stone was involved — it was craziness!) and went home. A good SPX all around!