Monday, August 27, 2012

Fan Expo 2012

Julie Benz
Just finished a four-day stint at Fan Expo, Canada's celebration of horror, anime, comics, gaming and sci-fi. It was an incredible weekend; I had a great time volunteering for the Horror Writers Association, and met a lot of great members and horror fans.

Thursday saw limited hours of operation, but it was still quite busy--good to see so many people milling about on a weekday! I attended a Q&A with the lovely and talented Julie Benz (Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Angel, Dexter); she was friendly, humorous and quite charming.

On Friday, I had planned to attend a session on writing for comics with Len Wein (Swamp Thing, Wolverine, X-Men), but apparently he must have canceled since this session disappeared from the schedule.  Later that day, I attended a panel discussion featuring four notable Canadian graphic novelists, one of whom was Ray Fawkes. There was some discussion about his groundbreaking graphic novel, One Soul:

Eighteen individuals throughout history whose entire lives unfold simultaneously. Comprised entirely of double page spreads split into eighteen panels with each panel featuring one character's life, cartoonist Ray Fawkes has artfully crafted eighteen linear stories into one non-linear masterpiece. Nominated for the 2012 Eisner Award in the "Graphic Album: New" category.

I was so intrigued by the book that I purchased it from Ray, and had it signed. Can't wait to give it a read.

Four cast members from Lost Girl
Saturday's highlight, for me, was the Lost Girl Q&A and autograph session that followed. Although the panel discussion was lively, funny and quite engaging, it was plagued by technical problems--the actors' mics kept cutting out. Fan Expo needs to hire real audio technicians to set up these panels and monitor them; the whole issue was completely unacceptable, and came off as wholly unprofessional on their part. But I digress...

I also wanted to attend the Q&As with both Sam Trammell & Nelsan Ellis (from True Blood), and James Marsters & Juliet Landau (from Buffy the Vampire Slayer)--but it was impossible to check out either one of them since I spent so much time with Lost Girl (which was fine--gotta support Canadian TV shows!). It's too bad that the sessions couldn't have been scheduled better (why would you put three panels about vampire shows one after the other?). Each should have been on a separate day--another problem that Fan Expo really needs to address.

Gillian Anderson
Sunday was more relaxed--I spent less time at the HWA table and had more of an opportunity to wander about (check out the end of this blog for more photos).

The highlight today was meeting Gillian Anderson and getting her to sign a photo. It cost $20 extra to have it "personalized"--well worth it, as she added a funny little message about my eyes (I was wearing red contacts, which matched her hair colour in the photo). I was hoping that the personal note would be her phone number, but alas, this was not the case. Heavy sigh.

Thus ends my blog entry about this year's Fan Expo. The biggest disappointment? NO VAMPIRES! Lots of zombies, but no bloodsuckers (and I was only partially made-up like a vampire; my fangs kept falling out, so I abandoned them on day 1). C'mon folks, let's see some vampires next year!

Here are some photos of the various characters I met along the way:

And here are some video highlights from the two Q&A sessions I attended:

Monday, August 27, 2012