That's an end to another Dublin Comic Con and it turns out this year was my best one ever. Four years going to the con as an exhibitor and this was definitely the most enjoyable of them. In my first year I sold out of all stock before the end of the second day. By all counts that is a great first con and no mistake. Except I brought only twenty-five books along
This year I sold the princely amount of forty-two books. Forty. Two. That's forty-two copies of books I wrote floating around out in the wild now for people to read. I had new customers, return customers, hesitant customers. Customers, that's the main thing. Me, a simple indie author, had people coming to his table to buy stories he never dreamed people would read outside of immediate family.
I'm sitting here, typing this, sipping on a fine single malt whiskey as celebration for the success of this weekend. Even if the second day was somewhat slower than the first, it didn't hamper the amount of books sold at the end of the day.
I have to give a nod to the Head Artist Alley person, for want of an official title, Sharkey. I think it was a new role bestowed on somebody this year, but the guy was great. Checking in on folks during the weekend to see how they were doing and if they needed any help with anything. Running around in the morning on both days to make sure people were set up and ready to go. Hell I even have a fantastic piece of artwork to add to my growing collection. Basically he is an all-round gent.
Roll on next year is all I can say I guess.
Another day, another Dublin Comic Con opening day over and done with. This weekend is Dublin Comic Con 2018 and as I mentioned before I was one of the lucky ones to be selected as an Artist Alley exhibitor. In I rocked this morning, looking at the costumes and the setups, to my table.
Which was in one sweet bloody location I can tell you that. A corner table, right across from the wide open area that people queued up in to go to the celebraty booths.
A better table you could not have asked for. Not to mention the table neighbours were great and friendly folk, which always makes the day easier if you are doing these things solo.
With my stock out on display, I settled in for what I thought might be a repeat of last year. While I enjoyed last year greatly, the sales were pretty poor. It is just the nature of the beast. Going in with a dose of reality is not the worst thing in the world.
Turns out that the ladyfriend was right, I should have expected good things.
By lunch time I'd sold enough books to cover the cost of the table. By the end of the day I had covered the stock and started to make profit. Proper profit too, not just a few pennies.
There were return customers, people who had either both one or two books a few years ago and came back. There were return, dare I say it, fans. Folk who have actually followed the series from day one and keep tabs on when new books come out. There were new customers, looking to get their hands on the first book or maybe the first two. I was even lucky enough to sell four sets of all four books to people.
Four books. Bought by people who had just passed by the table and liked the look of the covers. That's amazing, I have to say. As everyone knows I tend to be my own worst critic. But strangers coming and buying the entire set in one go, that's just stuff you dream of happening.
To top of the end to a great first day, the ladyfriend brought Nugget and Jellybean in. It was their first time coming to the con and she had them wearing a Rescue dress (lady Ironman for those not comic book nerds like me) and Captain America outfit. In they came, the kids getting all the attention for being super cute, and dropped by to see their dear old day. The ladyfriend then brought them around the convention, which allowed Nugget to get into pictures with all of her favourite super heroes. On the drive home she said she had a great day.
Parenting done well.
The end tally of stock sold was just under half of what I had brought in. By just under I mean I am only two books shy. Not a bad opening day for the con. Tomorrow I will be bringing in the remaining stock I have and we shall see how it goes. But tomorrow is not about breaking even anymore, tomorrow is all about the fun.
Fun that I would never have even tried if the ladyfriend had not pushed me to write the first Filthy Henry novel all those years ago.
Two Filthy Henry related updates for this post. One minor, compared to the second.
First up, the minor update. I will be once again at Dublin Comic Con this August in Artists Alley. This will be my fourth year exhibiting at the event and I can't wait. What makes this especially announcement worthy is that I was selected by a panel to attend the convention this year.
As was bound to happen with the convention getting more and more successful, more and more people wanted to be part of Artists Alley. Initally the guys ran a system where anybody who had been in the alley the previous year was given a week headstart to attend the following year. This, of course, meant that some folk never got a chance to get in once the tables all went. So, in order to make it more fair, the application system was changed this year.
People who wanted to be in the alley had to apply, with no preferential treatment given, and show their portfolio of work. Then a panel of people from the convention organisers would select fifty lucky folk to get a slot.
I was selected. This might not be a huge deal for some folk, but it is for me. It means that a panel of strangers looked at my insane story telling collection and decided that it was good enough to be at the convention.
No details on table number or location just yet, but as soon as I get them I will post another update.
Now, onto the second announcement.
Stolen Stories, the fourth Filthy Henry novel, is available for purchase on Kindle and in Paperback.
This has definitely been the longest amount of time I've spent working on one of the Filthy Henry books, mainly down to the sheer size of it. In my typical fashion I kept the paperback price at default, which effectively means I make nothing from it, because Print on Demand is a costly thing. But for anyone interest in the latest adventures of Filthy Henry you can get it from Amazon