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The Beguiling Signing

Hey, guess which shaky cam monster movie was sold out? If you guessed 27 Dresses, you'd be wrong. So thus a night on the town quickly evaporated to everyone standing around muttering "so what do you want to do?" "I dunno, what do you want to do?" Well, I thought I'd come home and write a crack-tastic entry about my wild (okay, this is me, and I consider plaid socks "wild") signing at The Beguiling over Christmas. Yes, a little late in the writing, but I wanted to do a long and cracktastic entry, and hadn't had the fortitude to do it before now. So anyway! First a dorky comic to get things started:

A fairly accurate representation of the difference between my interactions with those who'd come to get their book signed, and Svetlana, who is, as the comic says, a total pro at all this and probably has sold a billion copies, where I'm trundling along being totally thrilled that I sold more than three copies of my book. Yes, I suppose it'll all wear off eventually, but for the moment ... YAYFUN!

So anyway, I got there with Mom and two of the three brothers in tow, and the first question was "where's the washroom?" (don't worry, there's a point to this). Mom and I trekked downstairs and were confronted with DEAR LORD PILES AND PILES OF COMIC BOOKS to which Mom commented "Faith, you're one of millions."

... yes, nothing like a hilariously unguarded comment from your mother to boost your confidence in your comic book specialness. I'm one IN a million, Mom. Right? Yikes. Seriously, I don't know how anyone who works at a comic store gets anything done, surrounded by books all day. Books to read and devour and be swept away on, pages and pages of graphic novel goodness ... wait, where was I?

Oh right. Eventually I was pried out of the bathroom and trundled upstairs to meet Chris Butcher, who looks just like his icon (IT'S SO WEIRD!), who introduced me to Eric Kim. Once again I busted out my MAD CONVERSATIONAL SKILLZ and shrieked something like "OMG COMICS ARE SO GREAT I THINK YOU DRAW COMICS TOO BY THE WAY DO YOU KNOW MY FRIEND OMG YOU WENT TO SHERIDAN TOO WHEEEEE!!!!!"

Did I mention my New Years Resolution is to be quieter? And not so hyper, and listen better? Well, it is.

Anyway, so apparently some local people were doing a documentary on comic books (and especially Canadian comic books), so I dashed next door to talk to them. I'm completely fascinated by filmmakers and cameramen (they see everything!) and after asking about a dozen stupid questions about being a cameraman and The Amazing Race I figured I should let the poor bloke do his job.

We ran out of time and I had to dash back to the store (shouting "HI!" at some poor guy hanging around outside, after mistaking him for Chris) because Svetlana was there, and also people were starting to collect and wanted their books drawn in. People! Yay! I love people! And I'd like to stress that my curiosity is legitimate. Really, I'm not putting it on. I really do want to know who read my little book, what other books they read, do they draw, who are you, in general? I suppose when the newness and novelty of the whole thing wears off (remember, this was my second signing), I might get tired of it all, but for the moment I'm completely fascinated. My favourite was a mom and her teenage son; she said she was buying the book for her teenage daughter who liked my stuff. I don't know, I thought that was really cool. I totally want a teenage readership. I mean, I want to write for everyone too, I don't ever want to be exclusive in my comics, but I remember me at 15 and how much I longed to read comics about ... I don't know, girls being cool and having awesome adventures ... I think it's so great how many young girls are starting to read comics now. And how many people are actually writing and drawing in a non-exclusionary way. It's so cool. Yay comics!

So I drew in a ton of books. Still haven't mastered the talking/drawing thing. I guess I want to interact with the person buying the book, and I feel that I'm rude if I put my head down to draw, so I end up looking at them and then the drawing gets neglected and I hold up the line. The sketches were better this time, though, which made me glad.

A bunch of my friends came too, which made me so happy. My work buddies from the Maritimes, newly back in Ontario, a friend from university (after six years she still looks the same, thin and naturally blond ... not fair), a friend from Sheridan. It was great. My brother slunk around, taking pictures. He took some surprisingly flattering ones:

LOLcats! I actually look like a human being!

Anyway, so many people! So great!

Later, after the crowds cleared out everyone rumbled next door to eat, and I got free chicken wings and an unlimited supply of diet Coke! Awesomesauce. Ah, the perks of comic book artistry. I got to hang a bit with my lovely former co workers (I miss you, Wes and Megan!), and after they left, listened bug-eyed to [CENSORED] of the [CENSORED]. Oh man, somewhat terrifying. At one point I had to wail "[CENSORED CENSORED CENSORED TO PROTECT NAIVE ARTIST GIRL FROM ACCIDENTALLY STARTING STUPID RUMORS]" And afterwards I heard about [CENSORED SERIOUSLY HICKS DON'T YOU KNOW BETTER THAN TO REPEAT GOSSIP CENSORED]. In conclusion: whoa. One regret: didn't really get to talk much with Svetlana and TK. Maybe next time.

Anyway, it was wild. I had a ton of fun. I wish I had comic book people to hang out with everyday. I guess I could go down to Strange Adventures and hang out there, but I always feel so bad, distracting those poor fellas from their work with my need to talk about OMG! COMICS!

And after the signing I also finished up my interview with the nice documentary film people, and and one point was trying so hard to sound knowledgeable and introspective I completely forgot what question they'd asked me, and had to stop and ask... so embarrassing. So much for not looking like a complete idiot. Oh well.

So finally, thank you so much to Chris Butcher and the rest of the Beguiling folk for inviting me out and making me feel welcome and buying me chicken wings. I had such a great time, really. Hugs and stupid comics for you all. :D