Friday, June 21, 2013

Cons and Cons

I'm going to prison in the morning. I'm going to the Albuquerque Comic Expo in the afternoon. I'm far more worried about going to the Comic Expo.

As a criminal defense attorney, it's part of my job to visit correctional facilities on a regular basis. Most of these visits are quite routine. You go through a metal detector, you sign in, you get a badge, go to a meeting room, exchange information and then leave. You CAN tell the players without a scorecard. The guards are in blue, the inmates are in orange. Everyone else wandering around is wearing a badge.

Over the course of the last ten years, I can count on one hand the visits that have not been routine-- I was once locked in an interview room for an hour with an inmate while the guards forgot about us was probably the worst thing to happen to me.

But I got out after an hour, safe and sound...

As a published author who writes thrillers, it's part of my job to go to a variety of conventions on a regular basis and attempt to sell my books. I have one novel, Lawyer Geisha Pink, that has clear fantasy elements so I have one foot in the science fiction/comic camp. I still hope to have someone produce a graphic novel for several of my books. I am also working on a science fiction novel.

Not to mention, I like the genres even though I don't know what a dalek is.

Unlike prison, you can't tell the players without a scorecard. People wear masks and costumes, sometime of characters you've never heard of. And that brings us to an important question-- how do you sell a legal thriller with fantasy elements to someone in a Darth Vader mask? Does the person in a furry outfit even have 14.95 for a copy of a darkly comic mystery set in the southwest?  And who the heck are you supposed to be?

I made a vow not to pander or pretend at these conventions. I treat everyone with respect.  I've been surprised. Darth Vader does like legal thrillers with fantasy elements. The person in the furry outfit might not have 14.95, but is willing to buy a book for ten dollars because they don't have any change. And that person is playing a character from the upcoming movie RIPD.

I just have to make sure that I don't confuse the two places.

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