I'd never attended Austin Comic Con, nor had I ever tabled at any con ever, so I pretty much went into this whole situation blind. Getting the table was pretty easy, and the price seemed fair as far as I was concerned. Setting up at the venue the day before went smoothly, and there was plenty of staff there to guide me through it. One thing that did surprise me was how little regard there was for the artist alley rules. Being my first time, I nervously studied the rule book and made triple sure all of my stuff complied with that, but when I got there, artists were blocking alley entryways, blasting music, and setting up displays that definitely were prohibited. Now I'm not that much of a stickler for the rules, not all of these things were irritating, but I think it says something about the staff that they weren't coming down on people who's displays were blocking only one of two exits each alleyway had for the entirety of the show. I'm more mad at the artists for being so inconsiderate, though.
January 10, 2017, 5:40 pm
Attendance at the show was far less than I expected. I didn't expect it to be huge like Megacon (the only other big convention I've ever been to), but even at it's busiest it still didn't overwhelm. The con in general seemed a little underwhelming, unless you were there to meet a celebrity, but there was still great talent in the artist alley and I met a lot of really neat people that I hope to see again at future cons. The venue itself was very nice and the venue staff gets an A+ in my book. I actually saw them working and addressing the needs of the sellers, while the event staff was absent around the artist alley.
All in all, I was expecting something a little bigger, but it turned out to be pretty much perfect for my artist alley debut, I think. Despite the low attendance, my booth did very well, and I could definitely see myself tabling next year.