|Packed House at Linework NW|
|Sparkplug Books sells comics on Sunday at Linework NW|
|Another view of the Linework NW Crowd.|
But my main point here is that Linework NW had a ton of stuff that was interesting to me and kept me looking and thinking across two days and several hours. That's not always the case when I go to a show, and it's a tribute to the curating of the organizing team, of which Zack Soto and Francois Vigneault are the main public faces.
Moving on to some general comments about the the show, in no particular order:
|Lisa Rosalie Eisenberg holds up her newest mini, Middle #1, at Linework NW|
Pizza for show exhibitors may be the single-best idea I've ever seen for a comics show. Especially since the Norse Hall is a nice place, but not really close walking distance to any food outlets that aren't carts who've come in for the show.
|Uncivilized Books Stands Tall at Linework NW|
As with the first Linework, I loved that as I was walking around, there were so many people with comics in their hands that they'd purchased. A show can have great attendance, a nice venue, and cool people running it, but if no one's buying, it's useless. I didn't poke too much for specific numbers from people, but it looked like sales were brisk, though of course, not distributed completely evenly.
The show was pretty steady stream for the times I was there, between around 1pm and 5pm. I don't know how it looked later in the day, but there were moments where it felt incredibly crowded and dense. I have no idea if there'd be another venue to move it to that might help with this and still be viable for all involved, but I think a small expansion would be a good thing, if possible.
|The Queering Comics Panel at Linework NW|
Linework continued its egalitarian policies with regards to tabling. As with past shows, certain publishers had more space than others, and of course they were also anchors. But they were not given special treatment or placement. Each was melded into the show, and they were distributed in such a way that if you were looking for one in particular, you'd just so happen to need to pass cool creators who could draw your eye--and maybe, your dollars, too. Fantagraphics was hopping--and deservedly so--but it wasn't like people were only buying from the big names. If anything, they may not have done as well as the smaller folks.
|Tucker Stone talks about Nobrow Books to an Attendee at Linework NW|
|One more of the crowd at Linework NW|
Last but not least, Zack and Krista's baby was the real star of Linework NW. Don't even argue the point.
|Chris Pitzer is happy because the Nats just won a game. From Linework NW.|
|Lucy Bellwood gains a new fan at Linework NW.|
Getting to talk casually with some folks, just as people, and not as creator-to-writer was fun, too. Part of going to SPX was seeing people I'd come to call friend, not just creator, and I felt like this was the start of having some of those same relationships here on the West Coast.
Linework NW was a wonderful, and I am already looking forward to next year. I hope that the Linework team time continues to build on what is a really fantastic foundation. It's hard to believe the show is only two years old! With such a strong commitment to variety and diversity, I think the show can really lead the way in doing even better with non-white representation in indie comics. Sometimes when folks think of indie comics, they gravitate to the old, white guard, like special guest Daniel Clowes. What's great about Linework is that Clowes was lauded, but so were people who might have been tabling for the first time. And the special guests were split 50-50 male/female, too. It wouldn't surprise me at all to see Linework be the indie comics show that finally brings more creators (and fans) of color into the fold.
That would take a show that's arguably already a model convention and turn it into something really special. No matter what, though, I can hardly wait to see what the gang at Linework NW comes up with next. I can't imagine not being there in 2016, and I hope you'll join me there!
You can find my collection of pictures from Linework NW here.
|See you next year, Norse Hall!|
**Seriously, even without a comics show, you should come visit Portland. We don't bite unless you ask.
***Just kidding, That's on the agenda for 2016.