Posted By Kathleen David on October 14, 2013
Peter attended Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. Caroline and I attended Saturday and Sunday.
Longest lines I stood in were for food and I chose the short lines for vendors with food that all of us would eat but it still was a 40 to 60 minutes to get to the food. I went after the height of lunch hour (2 pm) and that was the line. I know there is only so much that the convention can do about it. This year there were a couple of vendor trucks on property (the mac and cheese truck ruled) so because of the new RFID chips if you wanted to go further out, you had to get your badge checked out and then in to get back into the venue.
I didn’t hear lots of problems with the RFID chips. There were some that were sorted out. But overall except for the pain of having to check in and out, which really wasn’t for us, I think it worked.
The twitter take-over needs a serious apology from NYCC. I didn’t register my RFID chip because I was warned off it by my friends who did and found themselves “saying” things that they did not type. Not cool.
Crowd control was pretty good. They had some of the more popular booths hire security for line control. They had the path that the line was going very clearly delineated. And they kept people informed whether they were out of something or not. Once the hot item went, they went down the line and made sure that everyone knew that there was no more to be had that day. Props to Matty Collector for keeping the booth moving and the information flowing. Everyone at the booth knew what was going on and could either tell you or quickly direct you to who did.
Where the crowd control fell down was the rest of the floor. I don’t how many times I walked through a photo in the middle of the floor but I just didn’t care. It is the middle of the show floor and we are trying to get around and see things. Also the middle of the walkway where people are trying to get from point A to point B is sucky place to get photos. I give high marks to the staff in the Artist Alley who politely asked people to go over the walls to take photos because they were trying to keep lines in order and traffic moving. There were places designated for photo taking. The bottlenecks some of these picture taking people created were not fun to get around. Then there were what I called “the lost”, they couldn’t find something and couldn’t read the map for some reason. I spent probably about a 3rd of my time on the show floor helping people find booths and people. I never got to the autographing area so there are a bunch of friends I didn’t see but I really didn’t want to deal with the crowds there. Same with programing but props for setting up the feeder lines so well. One could walk around there very nicely.
I did get a chance to catch up with old friends and make some new ones. I had a lot of fun talking about puppetry with a number of people both professionals and fans. I met one person who was at my build panel at Dragon Con that I did with Liz and he showed me his first puppet. The kid has mad skills and will go far if he continues. I showed him some of the sewing tricks I used and gave him some ideas on things he could do to get the look he wanted better. I told him I wanted to see what he did next because I am betting it will be amazing. I showed Mr. Beagle my puppets, which he had never seen. He was impressed. A lot of people where impressed by the amount of detail that went into each puppet.
Caroline did well selling her drawings to the public. She is quite the salesman. She had fun on the show floor as well. She met the creator of Monster High. She met authors she likes. She got to talk to Jill Thompson about Scary Godmother. Jill asked Caroline if she would do a drawing for the Scary Godmother kickstart comic. Caroline did and created a really fun Scary Godmother drawing that Jill is going to use. She spent some time talking to Peter S. Beagle which she always enjoys doing.
Peter sold books, signed autographs, and talked a lot to a variety of people about a variety of subjects. He also did a number of interviews for people’s podcasts and the like. It was a good convention for him too.
So overall it was fun and we will, if they ask us, be back next year.
I am grateful to the staff and crew of NYCC who did such a good job of keeping things from dissolving into chaos.