Special Edition NYCC photo essay

Cos-Play was definitely a thing at the scaled down, Special Edition: NYC. The new venture for Reed Pop!. the organizers of such events as UFC Fan Expo, New York Comic Con and the recently launched BookCon that took place on June 14 & 14th of 2014 was definitely a mini success with as I was there a quite more than I expected crowd and lots of quality comics creators promoting, selling, doing sketches and greeting fans. It was assortment of everyone as Marvel and DC both represented well, as did Dark Horse, Valiant, Image and a slew of self publishers, independent press and people just starting out through deviant and webcomics.

Among people there were Danny Fingeroth, former Marvel editor and writer, editor of WRITE NOW! and an educator in comics writing. Also, Laura Lee Gulledge, Harvey and Eisner award nominated writer/artist of the graphic novels Paige by Page and Will & Whit, who was also promoting the currently workshopping musical version of her second book. Valiant Comics has also been on a role since they returned to the world of publshing, hiring some amazing talents and doing top notch series… but they also got marketing and merchandising down with plushies.

NYCC is a huge show with major celebrities and a big part of this year looks to be pop-culture nostalgia. Already announced so far has been a Karate Kid reunion, a panel focusing on LOST and a U.S. appearance by the creator of Death Note and Bakkuman. Special Edition allowed for a focus on comics which can at times get ignored at the big show even if the big guns do come out firing. I hope the show did well enough so it can become something even larger yet kept as a comics focused and only comics focused event. Marvel and DC bring some mega booths to SDCC & NYCC each year and I think there are fans who would love to see that without having to experience the insanity of a everything in pop-culture event.

Photos from BEA/Book Con

A few weeks ago the 2014 Book Expo America happened and as every year I had an amazing time and scored many books and took not enough photographs.  Being a pop-culture blog I will READ most anything but when it comes to photos I mostly stick to the pop-culture end of things and that means movies, music, television, comics and in cases culinary (as I am a trained chef).

Top Row: Actor Neil Patrick Harris signs previews of his upcoming memoir “Choose Your Own Autobiography”.  Author Daniel Handler AKA Lemony Snicket promoting his newest “FILE UNDER: 13 Suspicious Incidents” and upcoming “All The Wrong Questions Book 3”. Christian Rudder of the band Bishop Allen and co-founder of OK Cupid with copies of his upcoming “Dataclysm”.

Bottom Row: Gabrielle Corcos & actress Debi Mazar of Food Channel’s EXTRA VIRGIN, cook book out now.  Signmaker and artist Stephen “ESPO” Powers signs his Love Letter.  Winner of MASTERCHEF season 4 Luca Manfé with copies of his cookbook My Italian Kitchen.

 

A Very Belated Post MOCCAFest 2014

Life has caught the old Pop-Culture Spectrum by the whirlwind lately. Work, acting jobs, and more. Here are a few more portrait photos from MoCCAFest showing some of the amazing and wonderful talent the event brings forth.

Dean Haspiel
Artist extraordinaire Dean Haspiel

Seth Kushner
Writer/Photographer and all around ass kicker as he fights leukamia, Seth Kushner

Selina Briggs - The Jelly Empire
Artist & Toy maker Selina Briggs aka The Jelly Empire

MoCCA Fest Quick Day 1 Round Up with Photos

Long and crazy day with some wild crowds.   Moccafest 2014 so far seems like a great success.

I got to see a lot of old friends, help out, see some incredible comics, have great conversations and all that jazz.

There’s so much new amazing stuff at MoCCAFest this year but I like to acknowledge things that are directly offered to me and turn out to absolutely awesome.

HENCHGIRL by Kristen Gudsnuk has a kinetic energy and is mega funny. If you’re at the show today, seek the book out.

Here’s some photos from day 1:
art spiegelman talks with Peter Kuper
living legends Peter Kuper and art spiegleman talk who knows what… this is what MoCCAFest is all about!

Jess Ruliffson
This is Jess Ruliffson… an awesome artist and a winner of one this years MoccaFest Awards of Excellence winners.

and finally here’s me and James Kochalka (Superstar) with a bunch of his new book Glorkian Warrior Delivers a Pizza:
James Kochalka and I

Be at MoCCAFest 2014 this weekend!

If you come on the internet and live in or near NYC and hit PCS and are reading it. Stop! Just go to MoCCA Fest on Lexington Avenue between 25th and 26th street on the Island of Manhattan inside the 69th Armory… a military training ground and host to amazing events like Fountain Art Fair. It’d be an awesome place for a wrestling show too.

This year James Kochalka Superstar, R. Williams, Alison Bechdel and many others are guests. The MOCCA EATS restaurant has amazing menu. WACOM is going to be a presentation. The Charlie Brown Macy’s Thanksgiving Day float will be flying over head.

This is one of the busiest weekends of the year for someone like me. It’s Wrestlemania weekend. There are tons of art events. Last year Green Day was in town. Yet, since 2002 I have not missed MOCCA ever and this year will be no different and you shouldn’t miss it either.

NYCC 2013: A Before the Event Primer on What You Might Not Know

Navigating through NYCC each year can be quite an adventure.  I’ve been going since year one and while I always have an amazing time, know my way around and have contacts in places, even I get lost in the shuffle of it all.  Panels pop at last minute, schedules change.   All that, and more.  This presentation of collected links is something a little different though.

This is for those NYCCer attendees who are either attending all four days or just have that ONE big panel they wanted to go to and don’t intend to explore New York City itself.  Because?  You don’t have to.  By all means, if you are on Vacation and using NYCC as an excuse to come to New York then take full advantage.  Yet I know there are plenty folks like me who live here or maybe just want to experience comic con.  If that’s the case even with a full schedule there will be hours of time where you’ll be “What now?” and instead of just standing there trying to be “I’ll just play more Zelda or stand around the Marvel booth” I went and looked up some interesting stuff for you to check out.

First up are some booths that could if anything provide moments of enjoyment and add to that getting the bang for your buck experience:

8-Bit Bakery: Video game inspired cookies, cakes and brownies
Electro-Flash Media : Activated Light-Up Apparel
Animated Closet: Beautiful clothing
GameChanger World: Mobile gaming company
STL Ocarina: Instruemnt making compay focusing on Ocarinas, and specially made Zelda ones at this time too.
Roadhouse Sons: A graphic novel, a prose novel series, a band and I think a cartoon… defintely one to check out.
Chop-Chop Store: Graphic Design Tees

and here’s a cadre of links of just info that you might want handy at NYCC, just things that caught my eye that could be on interest to someone.

A Listing of Parties before and after NYCC
A listing of Dark Horse’s panels and Booth Signings schedule
Info on some of the Paid Autographs and Photo Ops arranged by Froggy’s Photos
Info on Frank Bello of Anthrax at NYCC
Info on Image Comics Signing and their Party
Info on special Return to Nuke’Em High signing at TROMA booth
Cosplay as an Archie Character as a Zombie and win special prizes from Archie
The Soska Sisters and Glen Jacobs will be presenting See No Evil 2
Info on BOOM Studios panels and signings
More cool Archie Comics info for NYCC
Info on what NINTENDO is bringing
Here’s info on panels from TBS and TNT
Like Muppets? This link is for you!
Would you enjoy scavanger hunting for one of a kind crochet pieces that would be yours free? Check out this!
Info on John Dixon’s giveaway/signing for his upcoming PHOENIX ISLAND

all this is also just TIP of the Iceberg…
BIG ASS SPIDER! is something you definitely want to be aware of (if you’re like me)
and new news on THE FIFTH BEATLE
and really hitting up Artist’s Alley…

and just being ready for the unknown!

BEA 13 Haul & Photos: Adult Fiction

It’s been a crazy time here in the home of Pop-Culture Spectrum.  My life just sucked up by things like THE LAST OF US, but also by just Life in general.  I’ve had a lot of personal things to deal with and trying to secure things in my full-time career as a professional actor.  The whole time the stacks of books sat there from BEA unattended.  Although I have been reading The Fantastic Family Whipple by Matthew Ward.  When I could I saw down with these long lists gathering research and trying to concisely or in some cases not so concisely sum of the books.  I have just finally gotten through all the adult books and here they are in alphabetical of the first author listed on the covers along with photos of authors taken at Book Expo America 2013 where apropos.

A Blind Goddess by James R. Benn: The latest in the Billy Boyle series, a series of world war II mysteries starring a Army Detective who as once a cop. In the latest two cases come to him at the same time, one involving a possible serial killer and the other a definitely innocent man.

Outlaw by Ted Dekker: The scifi/mystery/fantasy writer tackles a bit of period adventure with a tale in 60’s and 80’s filled with survival. Ted’s Christian faith comes into play as usual, but one ignores that if not part of the proclivity to enjoy. It is a little hard to do so, but I try.

The Heist by Janet Evanovich and Lee Goldberg: The bestselling mystery writers team up to create a new series of teams up as FBI agent teams with Criminal. Has it been done before sure, but not by these two writers, including one who helped create MONK.

The Hired Man by Aminatta Forna: Unable to describe this one myself I borrow from the Amazon description. A taut, powerful novel of a small town and its dark wartime secrets, unwittingly brought into the light by a family of outsiders.

W is for Wasted by Sue Grafton: The 22nd Kinsey Millhone mystery arrives in September embroiled in pharmaceuticals and conspiracy. I grabbed this for my mother knowing she’d love it as she’s loved previous Grafton.

Death of a Nightingale by Lene Kaaberbøl and Agnette Friis: A part of the Nina Borg series of noir mysteries from the Dutch duo. In this the nurse looks into a case of a woman and young mother from the Ukraine who is a suspect in two murders. The investigation leads into a history all the way back to 30’s Ukraine.

Burial Rites by Hannah Kent: Based on the actual facts behind the execution of Agnes Magnúsdóttir, the last woman executed in Iceland in the 1800s. This is the debut novel for the Australian writer where the book is already a best seller.

Death in Breslaw by Marek Krajewski: 1950’s Noir crime located in Poland, written by a Polish author. Availble now in the US from Mellville House.

The Facades by Eric Lundgren: One of the Buzz Books of the show, I’m not sure how to describe it. Its a novel with weirdness, mystery, love and interestingness. This is Eric’s debut novel and I hope we’ll be hearing more from him in the future.

A Couple of Blaguards by Malachy & Frank McCourt (plus DVD of performance from 90s): This new edition of the two man play that can be performed by any two men was before and yet is also an extension of Frank’s work in Angela’s Ashes and ‘Tis and Malachy’s A Monk Swimming. Along with the not professionally filmed or distributed DVD (truly this is in front of a small audience, filmed with a low end camera, and yet saved from video tape to computer for years and then hand burned by someone recently to give to fans at BEA possibly even Malachy himself) it’s a great addition to ny library and the play would be great to add to yours too. The edition has a new 2013 introduction from Malachy McCourt making it more a book than a play publication like the Samuel French edition.

Author Jason Mott

The Returned by Jason Mott: Harlequins big branch out from publishing romance to carry a story involving mystery and the supernatural as people long thought dead return to Earth, not as Zombies, but in the same bodies they died in at the same age. So people who had a kid 50 years ago or so are now suddenly parents again or an old man now finds himself with a young hot girlfriend. The rights to this were sold really early and an event series will be airing on ABC this FALL called Resurrection starring Omar Epps. Much of this book and the series seems to be an American adaption of a Japanese flick from the 90’s, but no one cares about that really.

Doomed by Chuck Palahniuk: The Not Long Awaited Sequel to his last original novel DAMNED continues the adventures of Madison as she leaves Hell and now finds herself in Limbo. She is now writing letters to her fans or supposed fans through a blog connected to her twitter in some weird magic heaven space. It’s not supposed to make sense. It’s just supposed to be more crazy allegory, proof that Chuck can do myth and faith research and put it down on the page in a readable form.

Choke Point by Ridley Pearson: The second in The Risk Agent series. This time Knox and Chu travel to Amsterdam to take down a sweatshop using young women as labor.

Author Ridley Pearson

White Fire by Douglas Preston & Lincoln Child: The latest of the Agent Pendergast tales, this time involving Sir Arthur Conan Doyle AND his creation Sherlock Holmes with murder and cannibalism in the Appalachians.

[LIMIT] by Frank Schätzing: At over 1200 pages, this immense Sci-Fi book from the German author first published in 2009 is also a hard boiled mystery novel, using Sci-Fi the way it was intended, as a backdrop to explore social and political issues, in this case real estate, hotel management, construction deals and more. The book opens with a quote from David Bowie which always a good selling point.

The Good Sister by Wendy Corsi Staub: The description for this horror/thriller sounds like a killer (pun intended). The latest takes place in Catholic girl’s school where it all seems simple, bullying, online chatting dangers…. murder.

The Blue Blazes by Chuck Wendig: Mookie Pearl is a supernatural criminal hitman and his life gets flipped upside down when his daughter decides to not just defy him, but go against him. This book has one of the best cover images I’ve seen in awhile as well from Joey Hi-Fi.

Super Pop! Summer Blog Tour: Dan Harmon Interview Highlights & How Not To Be Married

(The following is part of the Super Pop! Super Summer Blog Tour and a review copy was provided by the publisher)

One of the best times I had at Book Expo America was sitting with artistic editor at Zest books, Daniel Harmon to discuss his upcoming SUPER POP!

It was a lively conversation where I got the inside scoop on the development of his funny, snarky, educational guide to movies and books.

The book came to him while listening to podcasts and hearing them do recommendations for various things. He realized there was a lack of the style of blogs and websites (such as mine) who took the time to find a way to speak in a commercial tone that curated the power of pop-culture through film, music, television and more. He wanted to create something that could actually teach teenagers what to be looking for without being lost in that big world of it all. An in print version of a Television Without Pity but with a Teen advisory board feel. So he set off on trying to figure out what type of book that would be and he landed on lists that would guide young people through the difficulties of life.

The first list he came up with was Surviving the Wild, with the 1997 film The Edge starring Anthony Hopkins and Alec Baldwin in a tip topsy film which is exactly about surviving in the wild, amongst bears and much more that would spoil the film (although Harmon comes close to it in his overview, it is more about delivering information about a movie one should see to learn, not about the twists).

Designing the lists and writing the info took months and late late hours of research and writing. When he didn’t know as much about a book or film, he went back and watched it again to write about in a concise paragraph that equally tied into the subject of the list. Many things he felt deserved to be recognized or recommended ended up not making the book because of the list concentrations.

One of those biggest regrets that he couldn’t use because he decided to not do a “How to survive a Break-Up” list was CONTEMPT. Either the book by Alberto Moravia or the Jean-Luc Goodard film based on it.

Despite this lacking of certain entries and a few entries where I personally disagree with Harmon’s own assessment of the production (be it book, film, tv show, or song) he has found an excellent way to concisely put together pop-culture recommendations in an easy pick up, get a taste, put down, come back later style perfect for its demographic and a definite thing for folks of all areas of pop-culture expertise to pick up.

I want to mention that there shall also soon be an e-book edition which will provide youtube, imdb, and amazon links making it much easier to follow up on the recommendations.

One of the biggest things missing of any pop-culture references in the book is professional wrestling, which came from a lack of knowledge on Harmon’s end and figuring out what the list would be. During our conversation I figured out the BEST thing for this though. A way to educate all on the fun and foibles on the soap opera of wrestling as well as being a guide to surviving something they will maybe one day approach.

HOW NOT TO HAVE A WEDDING OR BE MARRIED

In no particular order here are some of the most exciting happenings in wrestling through the much exciting weddings that traditionally just go really weird, wonky or whatever.

Stephanie McMahon and Hunter Hearst Helmsley : During the ceremonies Triple H appeared on the large TV and proceeded to show a tape in which Stephanie was drugged, kidnapped by HHH and married to him in a drive-by chapel in Vegas. Stephanie’s father would challenge HHH to a fight to get the marriage annulled, during this fight, Stephanie attacked her father revealing that she had fallen in love with Hunter despite how they got married. A few years later, while the couple were having problems, Stephanie had a doctor lie to HHH and say she was pregnant causing them to renew their vows. Before the ceremony HHH found out but said nothing, going through with the whole event, then proceeding to beat up his father-in-law (AGAIN) and then telling his wife they were through! (in real life this couple are actually together, have two children and are very happy).

“Macho Man” Randy Savage and Miss Elizabeth: In real life, these two had been married for 7 years before finally being married on PPV in a ceremony which actually went off without a hitch. Although the road to that wedding despite being a real couple was quite bumpy. In the then WWF she was not introduced as his wife or even girlfriend, but just as a pretty woman who wanted to manage him. That happened and then later they became “a couple”. The first problems came when Savage thought she was cheating on him with Hulk Hogan. They “broke up” and Savage became a bad guy and started hanging out with Sherri Martel. Eventually though the two got back together, Savage asked for marriage and the wedding happened. At their reception things went crazy though, as Jake Roberts gave them a Snake as a gift and then the Undertaker knocked out Savage. This itself went awry as Jake then abused Elizabeth and then later on almost killed her only to be stopped by Undertaker. Before eventually divorcing in the real world quietly and without fanfare, the strains of their real and fake marriage got strained in a feud with Ric Flair. Years after the divorce, the couple reunited as exes still in love in WCW, but this was short lived and eventually Savage got married two more times, once to a porn star and then to a wonderful woman who was in the car with him when he died. Elizabeth ended up both in wrestling and in real life with Lex Luger and eventually also died (years before Savage) in an apparent suicide pact gone wrong from a pill/alcohol combination.

Kurt and Karen Angle: Just like Savage and Elizabeth, these two were married for many years before finally being a public couple on TV. Their marriage as it existed on TV and PPVs in Total Non-Stop Wrestling is a prime example of how not to have a wedding or be married. They started their on air marriage as a couple with problems, with this ending up only to be a ruse to trick an opponent into a flase sense of security thinking the wife at ringside was good for them and not the husband. From there it was a mess. When they did their marriage renewal vows through chaos and insanity, Karen ended up married to AJ Styles instead of Kurt. This turned into a war between Kurt and AJ that Karen eventually in storylines chose AJ over Kurt. In reality though, all this stress and insanity pushed Karen into the arms and an affair with Jeff Jarrett who had lost his long time wife to cancer only two years earlier. This controversy of Jarrett still being a recent widow and being with a married woman led to Jarrett being temporarily suspended. Eventually Kurt and Karen did divorce and Jeff and Karen got married. . In a wrestling vow renewal of Jeff and Karen while Jeff was feuding with Kurt over it all, Kurt destroyed the wedding set and laid out a guest. He then proceeded to beat Jeff in a loser leaves company match (so that Jarrett could actually do a tour of Mexico and later India representing the company) and that was the last we ever heard of Karen in TNA. Although she now accompanies Jeff in his Mexico storylines.

BEA 13 Haul & Photos: NON-FICTION/COOK BOOKS

This is a listing of books gotten at Book Expo America 2013, with links to to the books and/or author where applicable as well as a photo shot at the show of various people met in person.

The Genius of Venice – Piazza San Marco and the Making of the Republic by Dial Parrott: Connecticut lawyer details the construction of the majestic Italian city.

What’s So Funny? My Hilarious Life by Tim Conway with Jane Scovell: The man behind DORF and years of humor teamed up with a regular autobiography cowriter for many a celebrity to deliver a memoir of his long career.

Jack Kennedy:Elusive Hero by Chris Matthews: To promote Mr. Hardball himself’s upcoming Tip and The Gipper, Simon & Schuster provided paperback editions of Matthews last bestselling biography of President John F. Kennedy

Facing The Music and Living to Talk About It by Nick Carter: Backstreet Boy & Reality TV star recants his experience as a drug abuser and rediscovering himself while also dispensing advice is this mix of memoir and self-help.

Dad Is Fat by Jim Gaffigan: The much loved stand-up comedian and actor used his experience of raising five children (and somehow not killing them, mostly thanks to his wife Jeannie) to write a hilaruous assortment of essays on parenting along his non-credited wife who most know helps writes all his material.

Read My Lips by Sally Kellerman: A memoir by the enthalling, sexy singer and character actress who isn’t totally not as famous as she should be.

Poseur by Marc Spitz: The music critic, novelist and playwright explores his adventures in 90’s Lower East Side, a seedy world of clubs, alcohol, soon to be celebs, murder and more (a world I know all too well).

Landau (3 chapter preview) by Landau Eugene Murphy, Jr. with Rick Robinson: Along with author Rick Robinson, the singer and America’s Got Talent winner tells his story as he knows it.

Guys Can Be Cat Ladies Too (Sampler) by Michael Showalter: The comedian has spoken about cats a ton in his act… there are pictures of him with cats. People know that Michael is a Cat Lady. Now he’s written a half funny not really serious, but maybe a little serious guide to taking care of a cat.

Five Days at Memorial by Sheri Fink: The Pulitzer winning article “The Deadly Choices at Memorial” about a hospital during the time of Hurricane Katrina is expanded into a full length novel. I found it hard to figure out where to put this. It is being promoted as a novel, but as it still a redone recounting by the same journalist I kept it here.

The Green Red Green: Collecting the best of three previous Red Green books, with minor updates and changes to make it slightly more timely/timeless, the star of the Red Green show stands tall.

A Field Guide to Lucid Dreaming by Dylan Tuccillo, Jared Zeizel and Thomas Peisel: An actual study and development guide into lucid dreaming, while I particularly have mastered this years ago through the work of folks like Windsor WcKay and much later Rick Veitch, this is an invaluable book from the folks behind Dream Labs.

The Shadow King-The Bizarre Afterlife of King Tut’s Mummy by Jo Marchant: Combing years of research and text from articles written for many magazines, noted science journalist Marchant recounts the amazing history the discovery and remarkable aftermath of Tutankhamun.

An Appetite for Wonder-The Making of a Scientist by Richard Dawkins: The noted biologist, scientist, atheist and public speaker delivers a memoir of his life that brought him to the thinking delivered in his first book The Selfish Gene.

Twenty-Dollar, Twenty-Minute Meals by Caroline Wright: Designed as recipes for 4 people, it’s a nice resource full of great food photography and at $13 one of the least expensive cook books ever.

Big Appetities by Christopher Boffoli: A collection of awesome photography which combines food with little figures to tell really great stories. It’s hard to explain, his work speaks best for itself.

New York a la Cart-Recipes & Stories from the Big Apple’s Best Food Trucks by Alexandra Penfold & Siobhan Wallace: As the title states, this collection is quite compelling, giving a nice historical perspective of a part of current NYC life spliced with recipes one can do at home.

Cook like a Rock Star by Anne Burrell with Suzanne Lenzer: To promote her upcoming Own Your Kitchen, Random House provided copies of Anne’s last cookbook. It’s trove of recipes with notes before each in Anne’s wonderful voice.

Book Expo America 2013: The PCS Experience

My Book Expo America 2013 adventure began on Wednesday, May 29th to attend my first and probably last BEA Bloggers conference. This is not because I didn’t have fun or did not network, but because I went to hopefully gain some education and tips I had not yet previously figured on my own. While I did get a few notes that I found useful in one session, as a whole the education part wasn’t there.

I was luckily enough to at least find a few people whom I made a midpoint of a connection with to keep things entertaining, including Molly over at InsertGeekHere. Lunch was nice enough actually using the $15 coupon we received for food and drink, I actually was left with $2, but unfortunately no cash back. Hearing from Eric Smith from Quirk Books (who has an awesome book called The Geek’s Guide to Dating coming in September) was a definite highlight.

The keynote openers and ending speeches were by Will Schwalbe and Randi Zuckerberg and both those were enjoyable and funny. They weren’t worth the price of admission, but they were fun. After the event there was a reception where we could use a drink ticket, network a bit more and surprise surprise a ton of books. There were a few books that went really fast in the Young Adult Editors speack of the Blogger conference and there were not enough books for all, so this really made up for that. Got a few cook books, a huge sci-fi novel AND the newest from Jeff Hirsch, a book I planned to grab during the regular Expo but luckily I didn’t need to. Jeff also happened to be there, so that was a double plus.

I forgot to mention that I snuck (sic) out from the Blogger conference when both sessions available didn’t excite me (mainly the ethics session) and headed over to check out Sidelines. While there I did make a couple cool discoveries which I’ll be discussing in a side article.

Before heading downtown for events was able to swing by the Editor’s Buzz and was very happy to get a copy of The Facades by Eric Lundgren, a book high on my list to read.

From Javits I went down to Housing Works for the Bookrageous event, but after saying hello to long-time friend poet Guy Lecharles Gonzalez (now of the Library Journal) I headed over to CultureFix where I had only planned to say hello to friends Fritz Donnelly and Amy Van Doran, before finding myself pulled into being part of the event and dancing till late in the evening despite wanting to be at BEA early the next day.

THURSDAY, May 30th
I was successful in this and hence following my best recollection of BOOK EXPO AMERICA 2013:
I started my morning with heading over to get a copy of Cynthia Voight’s newest Mister Max: The Book of Lost Things. From there I went to Autographing for a few things. I ended up only tackling two of them but they were a great two. First was Malachy McCourt for a A Couple of Blaguards, the play he wrote with dearly departed brother, as a bonus they also gave out a DVD of their performance of the play. Then it was over a few tables to my old collegemate David Ezra Stein for his newest children’s story Dinosaur Kisses. Realizing the time I rushed over to Dr. Ruth, but unfortunately they ran out of books, but I still got to talk to her and get the photo. Then it was a time where I knew I’d have to waiting but it was worth it to get the second book in the new Lemony Snicket series and see Daniel handler again. Daniel told me that sometime in 2014 his newest novel (a non Snicket) would be a pirate tale. This highly excites me.

A quick bounce after was over to Nicole Polizzi, some exploring, then over Autographing once again for These Broken Stairs and Ridley Pearson’s second Risk Agent. A little more exploring and then I had a scheduled sit down interview with Vivek Tiwary about his upcoming Dark Horse graphic novel The Fifth Beatle (more to come on that very soon). A lot more walking and exploring followed as well as grabbing books before heading to autographing again for Richard Dawkins and others, and along the way stopping at surprise guest Tim Conway. Back to the floor to explore, then another designated signing, this time with Paul Pope, which I could have skipped as the next day I hit another signing and got a shirt too.

From there though it was for a serious line of length and time killed. I thought the line for Snicket was long, but nothing compared to Chuck Palahniuk and that was still tame to what Grumpy Cat would get or Neil Gaiman would get later in the week, but still. Was very happy to my hands on DOOMED, sequel to DAMNED. I was able to get the new John Rocco children’s book after as well and explore the show more before deciding to head home. Knowing I partied Wednesday and would be partying definitely hard on Friday I wanted one calm evening.

FRIDAY, May 31st
Despite getting home early, I somehow still ended up to the show later I planned, but that was still at around 9:30 with plenty of time for everything on my schedule along with enough show floor exploring that when I finished filled my roll luggage at the end of the day it was quite heavy and it was an adventure bringing it around town and its heaviness and amount of books made me have to have my evening stop short. That was later though.

First up was Matt Phelan’s Blufton and then online to grab a copy of FROG TROUBLE, an awesome book/CD which I will have more to say about for sure. It was then a whirlwind of booths and autographing, back and forth. Obert Skye, Jason Mott of The Returned (debuting as Ressurection on ABC this Fall), Ridley Pearson. Trying to hit as much as I could before my 11:30 interview which I still ended up late to because I was right at the front of the line for Giada Di Laurentiis with steps away and to leave the line at that point would be crazy. If I wasn’t steps away and also two booths from my interview, sure… but… yeah.

That 11:30 was with Dan Harmon, editor at Zest and writer of the upcoming Super Pop! . It was a really fun interview where lots was discussed and next week as part of a scheduled blog tour will be reviewed, have an interview and even a special top 10 list of my own devising thought of at the interview.

Because of how my Friday schedule landed there was nothing specific other than getting Family Whipple as well as the Anne Burrell signing so a lot of show exploring was done. If I could remember what booths I hit in order, who I spoke to, etc. I would tell you. I know at a point I specifically went to the Macmillian booth to get a BATTLING BOY t-shirt. I also saw Red Green, and Landau Eugene Murphy Jr. of America’s Got Talent fame and I hung out with Gugar of the upcoming book The Creature Department.

After all was said and done I hung out with Torsten Adair for a bit as I backed my luggage and then I made my way slowly over to Columbus Circle with actually some Subway snafus, which was… “fun” with the luggage. I made it though, stopped in at O & Co. and said hello to my short time co-workers. Then I headed upstairs to Landmarc where a very calm and casual affair was had. Plenty of delcious food, excellent guests, including Red Green and a slightly rude Robbie Robertson. I had a really good time, but I also needed to get all the way to the World Financial Center for one of my best friend’s birthdays on a boat. That was… well, the evening ended on top of a roof with a pool and involved nudity and that’s all I’ll say about that. I got home around 4 AM and still planned to go to Expo again the next day for Jim Gaffigan, Representative John Lewis and a few loose ends tied up, including the “What aren’t you packing up?” part of Saturday which is always exciting and fun.

SATURDAY, June 1st
Which is EXACTLY how it went. I got to the show around 10 AM (and don’t ask me how I pulled THAT off even). I walked around for a bit, saw some excellent stuff on the floor I had missed because of how crazy the show is and then got a front row seat for Jim Gaffigan. He was hilarious and fun. There was no moderator, so he interviewed himself, talked a bit and then took questions from the crowd and riffed off of the questions and yes, Yours truly asked a question too. Then there was waiting to get the book signed and say hello to the funny man. It was all worth it.

Eventually I was able to make it over to where John was signing and had a wonderful talk with him and also throughout the show spoke to some great publishers, writers, publicists and more and walked away with so many books. Way more than I thought I would on a Saturday. I wasn’t planning on such a haul. I chose to not even bring my luggage, which was a big mistake. I barely made it home as my bag ripped on the trip back. Still what an experience!

Following this report will be a collection of photos I shot or were taken of me and author/celeb, as well as a listing of every book I got with links and mini info.

Later in the week and months look forward to reviews, interviews and more!