A talented artist named Nicholas Straight challenged me to make a comic about the good things in my life. I know this comic doesn’t quite satisfy that challenge, but my next comic will cover one of the positive aspects of conventions and why I do them.
The reason my comics have been negative lately is that dwelling on the positive aspects of my life has been painful for me. I’m often reminded of how fortunate I am, but the truth is that good fortune has come with a lot of physical and emotional stress. Some of the best moments of my life have come from tabling at comic conventions, and some of the worst moments have come from traveling to them. I am very fortunate to have a steady paycheck from my day job, but the challenges from that job can be overwhelming. Then there is the guilt that comes from realizing that there are a lot of people out there who are worse off than you.
Life became more bearable when I accepted that it kind of sucks. I stopped looking at the blessings in my life and started the focusing on the challenges I needed to overcome. The ironic thing is this attitude has made me much happier and lighter in spirit than gritting my teeth while trying to focus on how good my life is.
That said, I am grateful to be taking a break from conventions for a while because they were burning me out. I need to take some time to rethink how I am doing them.
I know some people will look at the numbers I posted in the last panel and say that I shouldn’t need to spend that much. It’s true that I have spent less at some conventions by sharing hotel space, table space, and/or crashing on people’s couches, but I’ve only been able to do that for smaller shows. In those cases, I may save $200, but I end up making $200 less in sales.
If anybody is planning to go to APE or SPX in 2016 or TCAF in 2015 and wants to split a hotel room, e-mail me at ryandow at ryandow dot com. These are good conventions, but it would be great if I could cut down the travel costs.