Sunday, August 4, 2013

The Death of Blogging: Long Live The Hivemind

As of late, readers may have noticed our absence from the world of comic book blogging. But visits to our tumblr, facebook, or twitter pages will reveal a different narrative. I recently provided photography coverage at San Diego Comic Con for the Comics Beat, a leading comic book news website. Soon we will begin a regular monthly column focused on the world of comic book retail, Sell It Like It Is, for Woman Write About Comics. In other words, despite appearances here on the homefront, we're busier than ever blogging about comics.

It is a little sad, but the one woman operation blogs have been on the decline for quite some time. I think I joined the comic blogging community right at the beginning of the end, when the growth of  one's audience still depended more on the content than the place it was posted. With the rise of more interactive and timely platforms like tumblr and twitter, comic book blogging is still content driven, but depending on the outlet, some signals get a much larger boost than others. If people aren't reading the feed so to speak, blogging on a platform with a dwindling community yields smaller returns than say posting to tumblr. There are still plenty of homes for longform comic book essays and reviews, but more often bloggers are joining forces to form collectives. Over at Women Write About Comics, the success of their past blog carnivals showed that joining forces not only extended the scope of conversations on a single topic, but they brought a whole lot more eyeballs, too. In this sense, the rise of group blogs (or resurgance considering the once popular LiveJournal communities) is a good thing for fostering more in depth analysis of topics within comics. 

Splitting ones' own thoughts up amongst the hive mind of various social media platforms feels both repetitious and fractured at times, but we will do our best to compile our internet footprint here at home. We'll start with our San Diego Comic Con coverage at the Comics Beat:

Beast cosplayer SDCC2013, San Diego Comic Con, Marvel, Hank McCoy

Tons of cosplay, crowd images, toys, and more; we were really overwhelmed by the convention on our first day. It's a lot to take in, especially for a sleep deprived first timer like myself.


Felicia Day, Dark Horse Comics, The Guild, SDCC2013, San Diego Comic Con

By Friday I had really found my stride as far as navigating the con floor and figuring out how to get the most out of the convention. I took more chances with attending signings and tried to engage in every interactive experience I could find, though I missed the Hannibal panel that I so desperately wanted to attend (I watched it online later).


Grant Morrison, SDCC13, San Diego Comic Con

The second half of Friday was when things really got crazy and the events that transpired provided our most memorable comic con moments. I randomly ran into Grant Morrison on the street and asked him if he was cosplaying as Grant Morrison before realizing it was in fact him. Then I attended a special launch party for Petco's upcoming line of Star Wars themed pet accessories, an event that involved lots of cosplaying dogs. And to top off the day we attended the Eisner Awards, where we saw Challengers Comics + Conversation win the Spirit of Comics Retailer Award. Oh and we met Neil Gaiman. Best single day ever?

Clark Gregg, Marvel, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., SDCC13, San Diego Comic Con, Agent Coulsen

Saturday at Comic Con is as crazy and packed as one would imagine. Sadly, this was my last day on the con floor, so there was an added sense of panic to shoot all of the things and buy all of the gifts. We did not attend any panels, but we did get to see the cast of S.H.I.E.L.D. signing at the Marvel booth, and though we were not as close to see the cast of Captain America 2: Winter Soldier during their appearance, we will still brag that we did in fact breathe the same air as Chris Evans. 


Harley Quinn and Joker Cosplayers, nuclear family, SDCC13, San Diego Comic Con, DC, Batman

The end of the day and the end of our comic con experience. Plenty more cosplay photos, a picture of me looking extremely wonk-eyed next to Brandon Bird, and photos of the massive crowds leaving the convention floor.


Ashely Challenger and Neil Gaiman, Eisner Awards, SDCC13, San Diego Comic Con, Spirit of Retailer Award, Challengers Comics + Conversation


"In the weeks and months leading up to the annual spectacle known as “San Diego Comic Con”, dread of this event is expressed as frequently as anticipation by attendees, professionals, and fans staying home. The cost, the planning, the con crud; these are a few of fandom’s least favorite things, and they are all mainstays of SDCC. But what about the comics, many say? Why must the news of films overshadow the beloved source material from which they came? Why should comic fans have to tolerate the droves of people only attending to get a glimpse of their favorite actors? For those that miss the comic con of yore, these are valid complaints...."

Like transporters of the future, being in many places at once (on the internet) is easier and more common than ever. We will still create original content here, but we hope you enjoy our expanded roles elsewhere, too.

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