Choose who you are going to the convention wisely, based on your goals.
I work the dealer side of the convention booth and its incredible the amount of stressful situations I’ve witnessed over the years. I’ve seen guys trying to look through bargain box after bargain box while their very young kids get cranky and compete for dad’s attention. I’ve seen guys trying to ignore the bored stares of their girlfriends while waiting 2 hours for a sketch from a favorite artist. I’ve see friends bickering about where to go to next. And I’m sorry to say, I’ve seen a lot worse.
The theme of my convention tips series is to treat these cons very seriously. Most of us are lucky if we can get to 1 good con a year and we should do our best to make the experience enjoyable and successful.
Sure, take your kids if you want to take in the sights and sounds the big cons have to offer. Cons can be great fun for kids. Cons are very busy places and it’s just not fair to the little ones to expect them to stand around while you scour bins for hours.
Cons can also be cool outings for couples. If you are taking a partner with little or no interest in comic books make sure you fill her (or him) in on what to expect. There are always cool distractions at the big cons like celebrities, costume contests, art exhibits etc. A negotiated trade off in activities can avoid a lot of flack from the old lady (or old man).
It’s always fun hitting the con with a group of buddies. Just remember that you are not all tied to the hip. Let the guys know your intentions and set up meeting times where everyone can take stock and finesse the itiniery.
Sometimes we have no choice and have to bring the kids along and sometimes that special someone somehow ends up coming along. Situations like these you just have to suck up and take like a man. Make the most of the situation even if it is not ideal for the things you wanted to get done. You just may surprise yourself and the people you are with and end up having a great time at the con. After all, cons are all about having great times.
Walter Durajlija is an Overstreet Advisor and Shuster Award winner. He owns Big B Comics in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada