The countdown has begun for HeroesCon 2017. This con is held every year in Charlotte, NC. This will be my third year in attendance. I plan to meet up with Mark Sullivan ad Commander Benson again.
I love this con. It's been a treat every year, for me.
I'll post my experiences in this thread.
Sounds like you gentlemen had a good time.
Queuing up in autograph lines is not my thing. In the early days of the San Diego Con I was getting autographs in the program book. I wanted to tell Ray Bradbury that he turned me on to both science fiction (a short story in school) and live theater (his Martian Chronicles play). Someone distracted him and he signed my book without even looking at me. I never tried to get an autograph after that. At two later dates I shook hands with Jack Kirby and Will Eisner without distractions and told each of them how much I loved their work. That was much more satisfying than any autograph.
As I mentioned above, I enjoyed Jim Shooter's presentation very much. I could see that he and the Commander were getting along famously, but I'm delighted to read the account.
I completely agree about the autograph thing. It's the meeting that is (or should be) memorable. I vividly remember getting an autograph from Ed Brubaker a few years back. I brought his early Scene of the Crime Vertigo miniseries, knowing he was fond of it. But I had the same experience Richard relates: he was distracted, and didn't even make eye contact.
As always, great retelling of the events, Commander.
I think all three of us have said it enough, but that Jim Shooter panel was terrific. Very informative and entertaining. I have a feeling if I were to see it again, it be totally different. The man has a lot of stories, I'm sure. Sunday, he did not have a line at his table so I was able to speak to him. I have waited in line for his signature about a year ago in Tampa. It moves pretty quick. He does tell stories to most anyone. He's not like Steranko who puts on a show. Shooter will, if you bring something up will share a terrific story. When I met him the first time he told several Stan Lee stories. One was about when he was EIC of Marvel. Stan liked to walk to lunch when he was around. He liked Jim to go with him because, Stan walked fast and Jim had long legs, so he was the only one who could keep up with him!
Thanks for sharing this, gentlemen. I have also read Jim Shooter's blog and I remember well the entries on storytelling. That said, I would love to see him in person at a panel like this.
John Dunbar (the mod of maple) said:
I have also read Jim Shooter's blog and I remember well the entries on storytelling. That said, I would love to see him in person at a panel like this.
One thing which I omitted in my too hasty (as is obvious from all the typos) reporting of the experience but should not go unmentioned was Jim Shooter's graciousness and friendliness. He's an even more imposing-looking fellow than I am, which probably puts some folks off. And I sense that, like me, he's doesn't suffer fools too gladly. But he's very receptive to fans with something sincere and cogent to say.
Sounds like a great time - wish I'd been there. I always enjoyed reading Shooter's blog when he was posting regularly. It must have been a real treat to hear him in person.
Every year I read these accounts of HeroesCon and wish I had attended. But every year I read about them after the fact. This year I had a little heads up and planned to attend, but something came up at the last minute. Sounds like a great time, and I have already marked next years’ calendar for June. I have two “pro” stories to share, one about Terry Moore and one about Jim Shooter.
When Tracy and I came to Texas to go house-hunting back in 2001, we had one weekend to do it. We put a contract on our first house Saturday morning, then we set out to find Titan Comics (which I knew of from the “Retailer Reviews” section of Comics Buyers’ Guide). Coincidentally, Terry Moore happened to be making an appearance at the store that day. Luckily, Tracy just happened to have a Strangers in Paradise hardcover with her to read on the plane. Terry wasn’t doing sketches that day, but when we mentioned we had just signed a contract on a house, he drew two stick figures in front of a little geometric sketch of a house. A couple of years later we met him for a second time at APE, the show at which he was doing his last fan sketches ever. It took all day to get to the table because he was doing sketches for everyone. We ended up with a really nice sketch, but we didn’t really get to speak to him at all. All in all, I prefer the first meeting.
When I was in junior high (or maybe high school), I wrote a letter to Jim Shooter. I honestly don’t even remember what it was about, but it was probably critical. What I remember is that Shooter sent me a personal reply. It was only one line (“We hear ya!” or something similar), but I was impressed, then and now, that he took the time respond. He certainly didn’t have to do that.
I'll try to attend next year for sure!
Speaking of letters from Shooter - way back in the Seventies I had the notion that I had what it takes to be a comic book artist. I sent three pages of pencil art - one featuring Iron Man, one with the Hulk and the third with Shang Chi. I can still picture some of the panels in my mind and it is embarrassing to think that I submitted them to Marvel. Not much of a surprise that I received a rejection letter from Mr Shooter. It was not a simple "hey man, you stink" note, but a number of helpful comments on improving my art and suggesting maybe re-submitting in the future. It may or may not have been a form letter but it was certainly one of the most considerate rejection letters I ever received.
I once submitted a script for a four-issue Silver Surfer limited series. This was when the Surfer was still trapped on Earth, and my plot would have freed him to once again soar the spaceways (much as Steve Englehart later did, better). My rejection letter came from then-submissions editor Carl Potts, who explained that the Silver Surfer was "hands off" at the time to all but Stan Lee.
Back when I was still a teenager (no later than 1967) I was writing Marvel a long letter each month commenting briefly on each of their superhero titles. I was excited when I received a postcard from Roy Thomas until I read his snotty comment. He said that if they had too many letters like mine they wouldn't have time to produce the comics. I was still a kid and it was hurtful.