Nicki and I are about to head out to enjoy Free Comic Book Day! What is Free Comic Book Day..?
Free Comic Book Day is a single day – the first Saturday in May each year – when participating comic book shops across North America and around the world give away comic books absolutely FREE* to anyone who comes into their stores. *(Check with your local comic book shop for their participation and rules.)
Comics and Collectibles (4730 Poplar #2 Memphis, TN 38117 ph 901-683-7171) will also be participating in FCBD this Saturday. They have a 20% Off Sale, and you get one free FCBD comic for showing up, and one of each available with a purchase. Purchase more than $20 and you will get your choice of some selected HC books they are giving away! Supplies on this offer are limited, so be there early to take advantage!
Both stores will have other in-store promotions and sales that day, so be sure to check their websites and/or ask what’s up when you stop by. The comics aren’t free for the retailers, so please thank them for your free comic(s), or better yet- buy something while you’re there. We do!
And if you’re near Jackson, MS- the first-ever Brave-Con will be held at Trustmark Park in Pearl, MS on May 4th, 2013. The Mississippi Braves have expanded their annual Sci-Fi Night to include the world of gaming, comic books, anime, and steampunk! The event will begin at 3:00 p.m. and last until the end of the Mississippi Braves game that night. Merchants will be set up around the concourse throughout the night. For the first year, Brave-Con will be a one-day event, but hopes are that they can develop it into an annual, weekend long event.
This will be a great opportunity to gather together and celebrate and share comic book and sci-fi culture with kids and families who may not have had an opportunity to experience it. Coinciding with National Free Comic Book Day, free comic books will be handed out at the gate. Also, Sci-Fi and Comic Book trivia questions will be asked throughout the night, with the first to answer correctly receiving a great Brave-Con prize pack! For those who are up to the challenge, the Super Ultra Mega Trivia Challenge will take place in the Farm Bureau Grill, beginning at 5 pm. Memphis artist Kimberly Dunaway will be there, too!
Not sure where there’s a participating comic shop in your area? Be sure to check out the CSLS Store Locator.
And for all of you Star Wars fans- “May the 4th be with you!”
This weekend my wife Nicki and I had some errands to run around town. The tires on her truck have become balder than I am, I needed to get what little hair I have left cut, shop for some new shoes, and grab a bite to eat.
She had been going through her comics collection earlier in the week and decided to weed out some of the comics she didn’t want anymore. Most were fairly recent so most comic shops weren’t going to be interested in them. After letting me pick out which Batman and Harley Quinn books I wanted we packed up the rest and dropped them by our local library. The head librarian Heather Lawson was happy to see us walk in with a box containing 111 comic books! Most were Marvel and DC superhero comics, but there were also some Free Comic Book Day samplers and other very kid friendly books, too. She thanked us for our donation, and gave us a tax deduction form!
While we were there we noticed there was a new collection on display in the west entrance- M&Ms! It was very cool and colorful.
The large display cases on the left and smaller one on the right were all filled with M&Ms collectibles of all sizes and colors. The library encourages local collectors to share their varied collections with the local community. We’ve seen paper craft displays, Wonder Woman, and some other great ones.
Nicki and I have had some of our shared collections on display at the library in the past.
Nicki and I have both been Star Wars fans since we were kids, and have fond memories of seeing the movies on the big screen.
Over the years we’ve collected Star Wars comics, comic art, video games, novels, statues, action figures, and- oh, yeah…the movies! Above are some of Nicki’s favorite comics- “Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic” written by our friend and former Memphian John Jackson Miller.
We also put a couple Darth Vader sketch cards I did for Nicki in the display- the wide one is from the Topps‘ The Empire Strikes Back widevision set. I’ve worked on four Star Wars sketch card sets for Topps, and contributed some to the 501st‘s 2012 Star Wars Celebration set.
In the small display case we put some of my PEZ dispensers, candy heads, mini playsets, action figures, records, and Nicki’s Mr. Potato Heads.
Many of the items we’ve both had since we were kids. We both spent a lot of hours playing with them recreating our favorite scenes from the movies or making up our own Star Wars adventures. Hey- it took years before we could watch any of the Star Wars movies at home on TV, and even longer for the prequels to arrive!
Daniel’s book signing event at the library was a lot of fun. He was escorted out by members of the local 501st garrison and Memphis Fan Force- including our friends Traci Brown (Jedi Barris Ofee) and Kevin Avent (TK 2651).
We had a lot of fun setting that first display up and folks got to enjoy it for a month- but it was difficult trying to figure out what to bring and what not to!
Same thing happened with our second one. It was made up of some of our NHL hockey collectibles including Predators and Penguins jerseys, action figures, pucks, license plates, rally towels, photos, trading cards, car flags, and more. We even had some comic art from “The Waiting Place” by Mike Norton, and some Hanson Brothers (from the movie Slap Shot) collectibles on display. Steve Carlson/Steve Hanson was the first head coach for the Memphis Riverkings (now Mississippi Riverkings since their move across the state line into Southaven, MS a few years ago).
And speaking of our local Riverkings, we had plenty of their merch represented- Riverthing and Sheldon bobble-heads, team pucks, mini hockey sticks, pennants, noise makers, photos, trading cards, cups, keychains, pins and buttons were all on display in the smaller display case.
The next display we did was a comics one a few months later. This one got to be up for two months. We picked a few of our favorite comic books, pages, movies, soundtracks, action figures, and statues and filled the big display case.
Nicki had some of her favorites represented- Birds of Prey, Batgirl, Nightwing, and Wonder Woman.
I raided my Batcave for some TV Batman items, including my first bat-collectible- the Batman figure on the far bottom right. I got it back in the late ’60s when I was 3 years old. You’ll be seeing more TV Batman collectibles out this year- “Holy-Take-My-Wallet, Batman!” I seriously could do a display here of just Batmobiles! Maybe I can talk Heather into it one day…
We didn’t just have DC characters like Batman represented. We had some Marvel superheros join us, too. I was a big Spidey and Hulk fan growing up, and Nicki loves her some Captain America and Bucky. And who doesn’t love Howard the Duck..?
We stocked the smaller case with books that are collections of comics, biographies of comic creators, books on making comics, “Reading With Pictures“, and a CD by the band Kirby Krackle which contains songs about comics. Also had a few of my comic con badges on the bottom and related action figures throughout the case.
We love the fact that our library supports comics, and encourages people to learn how to make comics of all kinds! I hope your library does, too.
If not, I hope you will encourage them to. Maybe you have some comics you don’t need taking up space, but you can’t sell them for much and don’t want to just throw them away. Donate them like Nicki did. Maybe your library will let you do a display. Maybe they will host a comic book signing, comic art classes, or a Free Comic Book Day event, too! (Don’t forget- FCBD is the first Saturday in May each year!)
Oh, BTW- John Jackson Miller will be at the Horn Lake library on Goodman Rd (just south of Memphis and north of Hernando) on Wednesday March 20 6-7pm. He will be in town that weekend for Midsouthcon at the Memphis Hilton, along with fellow Star Wars author Christie Golden.
May the force- and a good library, be with you!
Today is the 92nd birthday of Noel Neill!
Noel was the original Lois Lane in the Kirk Alyn Superman movie serials, and the 2nd Lois in the George Reeves Adventures of Superman TV show. She also played Lois Lane’s mom in Superman:The Movie, was in a Jerry Seinfeld American Express/Superman commercial, as well as appearing in the Superboy TV series and Superman Returns movie.
I first met Noel in Metropolis, IL at the 2001 Superman Celebration. I continued to run into her and manager/agent/autobiographer Larry Ward each year at the Celebration each June, as well as at the Phoenix and San Diego Comic Cons. Both became friends of mine and I enjoy keeping in touch with them, and love getting Christmas cards from Noel!
When riding into Memphis from Mississippi with my wife Nicki, we occasionally see an 18-wheeler with Star Trek emblems, ship, and characters painted on the side of it.
I’ve seen it here and there for a few years now- either at a weigh station or going the opposite direction on I-55, usually early in the morning before rush-hour hits.
I always called it the “Trekker-Trucker“. Nicki refers to it as the “Shatner-Mobile“. Either way it’s definitely “Have Geek, Will Travel” approved!
But this “Enterprise” is not commanded by the Federation’s Captain James T. Kirk.
Nope, it is piloted by Captain Kirk Williams- owner and operator of the Jackson, Mississippi based trucking company, “Captain Kirk Enterprises”. I couldn’t find out much about him and his truck on-line, but did run across this article.
Captain Kirk and his 18-wheeled Enterprise make a regular round-trip run to Memphis and back each day of the week. I usually see him on I-55, the weigh station there, or making his way through Memphis on I-240.
…before it closed its doors..? Heard it may come back as a flea market and farmers market. Hope so- I love weird buildings and attractions. This country is losing a lot of its strange roadside attractions.
Good luck Capt. Kirk on your daily missions to Planet Memphis…and may you live long and prosper!
CAPT KIRK ENTERPRISES
250 SUNDOWN TRAIL
JACKSON, MS 39212
This past Saturday my wife Nicki and I got up early, hopped in the Batmobile, and headed down I-55 South towards Jackson, MS.
The event was held in the Louisville Coliseum in Louisville, MS- which is northeast of Jackson, and just south of Starkville. We made good time on the way down and didn’t have any problems finding the place.
This was the first time I’d set up at a show that had a dirt floor- that wasn’t outside! Apparently there are rodeos here when there isn’t a comic show. Luckily for us, the dirt was hard packed, the place didn’t smell like farm animals, and the big doors at either end were open for some good ventilation. It did get a bit muggy later in the afternoon, but the rain held off until the show was over- which could have made loading up a bit problematic, and messy.
I must say this was one of the easier shows to set up at. Some of the vendors were able to drive right inside to set up and tear down. We got there early so finding a good space up front was easy, and after loading in Nicki moved the car around to the side by the big door so we could load out easier.
I need to re-do my table layout/set-up. I was happy to have most of my merchandise and table cloth in one tote and a zipper portfolio this time. The paintings and sketchcards were the only things that weren’t. I normally don’t travel with the paintings but glad I did for this show. Since my Bushi Tales partner Dave has both BT banners they helped get people’s attention instead. I’ll be ordering a new Have Geek Will Travel banner and some promo items, as well as making a new HGWT tablecloth, tees, hats, and a Geeker poser puppet for next year. Since this was a first year show I didn’t want to be out a lot of money to attend, but did go ahead and buy a new fold up traveling table which was on sale and fits nicely in the back of my car and will come in handy at upcoming events. Hopefully I can find a tote with wheels on sale, too. I’ve seen some nice ones that lock and have good sized and sturdy wheels. If not I’ll get another fold up two-wheel dolly. I will have the new table set up ready for next season.
I probably won’t go as crazy as Inky the Clown‘s set up, though…wow!
We ran into some fellow Star Wars fans. The Mississippi Mandalorians had a booth there and members in costume, and it’s not a con without a Slave Leia.
We also ran into some familiar faces from the Superman Celebration in Metropolis, IL. Normally they are dressed as some amazing supers, but for this show costumers John Clark and Brin Londo were there as civilians, but had plenty of costume pieces on display.
Being a big Dr. Who fan Nicki couldn’t resist picking up this Sandman gas mask and asking, “Are you my mummy..?”
Speaking of Dr. Who, we saw a few Whos there, too! I hate we didn’t get a show of the female 4th Doctor who looked great in the Tom Baker hat and scarf.
Time travel and steampunk costuming was very popular at this show- and there were a couple steampunk booths, too.
There were also several kids in costume at the show which is always great to see. I wish I could have dressed up and gone to comic conventions as a kid!
But you can’t have a comics convention (or festival) without comics! “Arlo & Janis” cartoonist Jimmy Johnson was the main guest there.
Cartoonist and SEC/NCS member John Read was drawing toons and selling art supplies and books. I picked up some Copic markers from him- and at a great price! Be sure to check out his magazine Stay Tooned!
Big thanks to Bubba World Comix creator and show organizer Andy B. Childress for the invite to the Backwoods Comics Festival. Had a blast talking to him, fellow sketchcard artist Chuck Jett, and the other artists there!
Hope to be back next year.