Like Japan? Like jazz? Well, then, you may like Nippon Jazz NYC, a concert series at the Blue Owl Cocktail Room (196 Second Ave) in NYC. The next event takes place May 3 and features Nabuko Kiryu (www.myspace.com/nabuko). For more, visit www.meetup.com/nippon-jazz-nyc-meetup-group/.
Thursday, April 30, 2009
Kim (and Kim's mom) came through! So, without delay, I'll let Ms. Kim Mueller take it away...
Dear LOST Fanatic,
I know that you watch this show religiously and what do you get back? More and more questions… Well, today, I am going to ask you my own questions, but you get a prize this time for getting them right! This quiz spans all 100 episodes of LOST, including last night’s 100th episode. Be the first to post into the comments section below the correct answers to all 25 questions and win a beach pack courtesy of the NY Comic Con and C2E2 team. (Don't post anonymously, as we need to be able to contact you.) Hurry up and answer before you time jump!
1) When Oceanic Flight 815 crashes on the island, Jack finds Boone giving a woman CPR. After Jack questions Boone's technique, what does Boone tell Jack he is?
2) When John asks his mother Emily if his father is still alive, what does she answer?
3) When Danielle, Hurley, Jack, Kate and Artz arrive at the Black Rock to retrieve the dynamite, how does Artz suggest the ship got there?
4) Sawyer was getting headaches and went to Jack for help. What was wrong with Sawye
5) What is the name of the man who gave Hurley the numbers?
6) What name does Ben use when he is captured and held in the hatch?
7) What was Libby holding in her hands when Michael shot her?
8) What does Juliet say the monster doesn't like?
9) When Karl was being held captive and tortured at the Hydra compound, what was the number of the room where he was held?
10) What is the name of the faith healer in Australia whom Rose and Bernard visited?
11) How many days did Mr Eko go without speaking?
12) Kate stashed the little toy airplane in a bank safe deposit box. What state was the bank in?
13) Before Charlie drowned, what message did he write to Desmond on his hand?
14) What is the name of the whiskey Charles Widmore said Desmond is not worthy of drinking?
15) When Desmond visits Daniel in the past at Oxford University, Desmond gives Daniel the setting for the device to make Eloise the rat time travel. What is the setting?
16) What is the name of the freighter?
17) What is John Locke's date of birth?
18) When Charles Widmore wins the auction for the journal of the Black Rock's First Mate, what is his final bid?
19) While in LA, what does Ben show Sun to prove to her Jin is alive?
20) Sayid was a soldier in what military unit?
21) What movie does Hurly reference when he and Miles are discussing time travel?
22) As a boy, Daniel enjoys an activity which his mother says he shouldn't waste his time on. What is the activity?
23) How many beats of the metronome did Daniel count?
24) When Charles Widmore visits Daniel, he moves a magazine from the chair before he sits down. What magazine is it?
25) What is the Variable?
Kim came up to me today and asked it I liked Lost. Yes. Kim asked if I had a man crush on Daniel Faraday (as the rumors around the office currently claim). I nodded. Kim asked if I knew last night's episode was the 100th. Yup. Kim asked if I saw it. Nope. I explained in far too much detail how my girlfriend went off to see L: Change The World, leaving me to return a cable box, do the dishes, sort all our random wires and cables, buy groceries, carry 10,000 chopsticks into my apartment, and dispose of an old TV I'd become emotionally attached to. Kim said that sucked and said we should have done a Lost quiz and given something away in honor of the 100th episode. I said it was a good idea, that we could still do it, but that I was going to be out of the office in meetings until Monday so she'd have to take the lead.
Last I heard, Kim's now asked her mom to draft up the quiz. So, you'll see it online sometime. Maybe.
Wednesday, April 29, 2009
Sakura Matsuri -- Japan's Cherry Blossom Festival -- journeys West this weekend, taking over the Brooklyn Botanic Garden on May 2 and 3. The NYC Sakura Matsuri is something I've been attending for years as a fan, and it's simply breathtaking. The garden in full bloom. Cherry trees producing a shower of pink petals. Taiko drums, the koto, and shamisen. Sake and Sapporo flowing. And cosplayers. Lots and lots of cosplayers.
While NYC's Sakura Matsuri is a traditional Japanese festival, in recent years, it's become a destination for cosplayers for all the reasons mentioned above, and -- for the first time -- embracing their younger, anime-fluent audience, the Brooklyn Botanic Garden is programming anime and manga guests and events. And, I'm proud to say the New York Anime Festival had a hand in it.
Sakura Matsuri's full details and directions can be found here…
But here's an abridged list of goings on tailored to anime fans…
10:00–1:00 - Cosplay Photographer Anna Fischer - Osborne Garden
10:00–5:00 - Manga Library - Members Room
10:00–6:00 - Manga & Anime Artist Alley - Osborne Garden
12:00-6:00 - Sushi Pillow Photo Op - Magnolia Plaza
1:00–2:00 - Uncle Yo Cosplay Comedy - Osborne Garden
1:00-2:00 - World Cosplay Summit Photo Shoot - Osborne Garden
2:00–4:00 - Samurai Beat Radio Live Broadcast - Osborne Garden
2:30–3:30 - Anime Voice Actor Roundtable - Auditorium
3:15-4:00 - Samurai Sword Soul - Cherry Esplanade Stage
4:00–4:45 - Misako Rocks! A Crazy Comic Life - Auditorium
4:15-5:00 - Minami Kizuki Concert - Cherry Esplanade Stage
5:00–5:45 - Manga for Dummies with Kensuke Okabayashi - Osborne Garden
5:15-6:00 - Ai Kawashima Concert - Cherry Esplanade Stage
10:00–5:00 - Manga Library - Members Room
10:00–6:00 - Manga & Anime Artist Alley - Osborne Garden
12:00–5:00 - Sushi Pillow Photo Op - Magnolia Plaza
4:15–5:00 - Samurai Sword Soul - Cherry Esplanade Stage
4:30-7:00 - Ai Kawashima Meet and Greet - Kinokuniya - Friday
10:00-12:00 - Soundscape and NINGIN J-Pop Party - Club Elevate - Saturday
5:00-6:00 - Reni Maid Show - TopTunes - Sunday
Sakura Matsuri's Voice Actor Roundtable includes Tom Wayland, Rachael Lillis, Jamie McGonnigal, and Veronica Taylor.
Sakura Matsuri's Artist Alley includes manga artists Abby Denson, Misako Rocks!, and Kensuke Okabayashi, as well as D-List anime and manga celebrities Ali T. Kokmen and Peter Tatara at the Del Rey Manga and New York Anime Festival booths, respectively. (Unless, of course, Ali and Peter get silly and sit at each other's tables. And, of course, by "silly", we mean drunk.)
All this said, there's a lot more to Sakura Matsuri, too. So, check out http://www.bbg.org/exp/cherries/sakura.html, and I'll see you Saturday!
This weekend's full of events for anime fans. Ai Kawashima kicks if off by meeting fans at Kinokuniya on Friday, Sakura Matsuri is Saturday and Sunday, and Reni-chan wraps the weekend up with a concert Sunday night. Tired yet? No? Good. There's more.
Soundscape and NINGIN are hosting a J-Pop Party Saturday evening. On May 2, Club Elevate in New York City will be bumping with the latest and greatest from Hamasaki Ayumi and Amuro Namie. Downstairs will be J-Pop all nightlong. Upstairs will be mainstream club and R&B for your American pop friends. Plus, there's reduced admission for saying NINGIN at the door and free admission if you come in cosplay.
Doors open at 10 PM. 21 and over.
Club Elevate's at 390 8th Avenue.
For more details, hit up...
Do you know Reni? No? Reni's a genuine Akihabara singer that set up shop in NYC, and she's been performing Akihabara-style Maid Shows for the past few months at karaoke bars across Manhattan. Reni's next concert is this weekend, and if your Sunday evening isn't yet booked, you'll definitely want to check out her Akihabara-style concert.
New York, NY
Yesterday was Death Note Day at Kinokuniya. In the wake of such events, we get a bit of blog chatter. Yesterday's event produced the best blog post ever, over at the blog Bobbie's EXTRAordinary day!
The post starts off with...
And it only gets better.
Tuesday, April 28, 2009
The NYAF Mascot Contest ends tomorrow! If you haven't submitted a character yet, get to work ASAP. The winning character will not only be featured as the New York Anime Festival's 2009 mascot -- but the winner will get a truck load of Del Rey manga personally delivered to their door by Ali T. Kokmen.
Or not. The manga's real, but Ali will probably find some lame excuse -- like going to Baltimore to eat cake -- to get out of it.
Whatever. Enter here.
Monday, April 27, 2009
Opening Night at BEA has a rich tradition – Bill Clinton, Rudy Giuliani, Tim Russert, Aerosmith and the E Street Band???? Yup, you got it, Clarence Clemmons of the E Street Band and Steven Tyler of Aerosmith will be kicking off this year’s BookExpo at our Opeing Night Keynote in a conversation moderated by Chuck Klosterman. A different kind of Opening Night to kick off a different kind of BEA.
This Opening Night event marks the inaugural debut of BEA’s new Author Stage initiative which features groupings of authors who will be interviewed by journalists or other authors on one of two new elaborately built stages right on the show floor. The Author Stage interviews, many of which have already been scheduled, will take place throughout the day on Friday, May 29 and Saturday, May 30. The inaugural debut of the series which features Mr. Tyler, Mr. Clemons, and Mr. Klosterman will take place on BEA’s “main” stage in the Special Events Hall on Thursday, May 28 at 5:30pm.
I for one am happy to see different types of authors in a different format gracing our stage for Opening Night. In many ways, this year’s BookExpo will be about trying, against all publishing industry inertia, to do things differently in the face of a dramatically changing marketplace. What better way to illustrate that than with Tyler and Clemons talking about their new books - Does the Noise in my Head Bother You? (Ecco) and Big Man (Grand Central), respectively – I am psyched! And who better to bring it all together than Klosterman. I try hard not to put my own personal taste on display much at BEA, but Klosterman was my pick for this gig; I’m a big fan, a fellow Dakotan and I could not think of a better person to keep this already lively conversation even livelier…..
Attention NYC-area Death Note fans! As I’m sure you know, the third Death Note film — L, change the WorLd — is coming to theaters May 29 and 30, but what you may not know is that Kinokuniya Bookstore and the New York Anime Festival are holding a Death Note Day (evening, actually) on May 28th. The event begins at 6:30 PM at Kinokuniya (1073 Avenue of the Americas) and includes giveaways of tickets to the new film as well as Death Note posters, pins, shirts, and other swag.
The Emerging Leaders group of the ABA has set up a couch surfing program for BookExpo. If you need a place to crash, a fellow bookseller or even publisher may just have a couch for you. Check out the blog post about it here and surf safely my friends!
I'm working with my old pal Jessica Bagnulo (aka The Written Nerd, aka NY Times blogger) on our 3rd annual EL BEA party and a panel in conjunction with the AAP's Young Publishers Group. Stay tuned, I should have news on both these items later this week.
Lastly, on the EL Blog they have a handy list of reasons why a young bookseller should attend BEA. Nice that they are doing my job for me! Read it right here.
Sunday, April 26, 2009
Saturday, April 25, 2009
Lance is typically the guy who talks to all of you about books here at Medium At Large while I spend my time talking to no one in particular about Japanese comics. Today, that changes! Today, I talk about books with words and no pictures! Today, I talk about something Lance has probably already covered in depth!
Perseus Books will be creating a book – from beginning to end -- at BookExpo America this year. This book is “Book: The Sequel” and will be designed, edited, published, promoted, and sold live from BEA’s show floor. That’s awesome. And what’s even awesomer (I know “awesomer” isn’t a word) is the plot of Book: The Sequel. The book will be a collection of the first sentences of made-up sequels to famous books. And what’s even awesomer still (again, I know it’s not a word), is that you can submit your own sentences to be considered for the project.
Sentences can be submitted at www.bookthesequel.com until May 28. My contribution?
“Brains!” - The Great Gatsby II: The Zombie Years.
Friday, April 24, 2009
We have a perfect love triangle going with Unshelved - We love the web comic Unshelved, librarians love the web comic Unshelved, and we love librarians. See what I mean?
Since I took over BEA, every year we have done something cool with the boys over at Unshelved. Why do I like those boys and what they do so much? It’s hard to quantify, but I think it comes down to the fact that they love what they do, they do it well, they have twisted creative minds, and they’ve built this amazing community and culture for librarians around Dewey and all the citizens of their web comic.
Like Battlestar? Silly question, I know. Don’t know, though, if you know that Battlestar Galactica Origins: Adama just came out from Dynamite this week. Battlestar Galactica Origins: Adama is a trade paperback collecting the origin story of the Galactica’s Admiral Adama. Why am I talking about it? A: It’s awesome. B: It’s written by wizard and friend Robert Napton. Congrats, Rob!
Thursday, April 23, 2009
The third Death Note movie -- L: Change The World -- is coming to theaters next week thanks to the good people at VIZ Pictures. The film's screening on April 29th and 30th across the US, and NYAF's hosting a little party one night prior at Kinokuniya Bookstore in NYC to make sure everyone's in the mood. Of course, we can't wait until April 28th to get the party started, and I think we should give away two pairs of tickets to L: Change The World right here and now.
What are the rules of the game? Be one of the first two to correctly answer the following 20 questions on NYAF's Official Messageboard. The answers must be posted right here...
I'll be private messaging the two winners to get their mailing addresses for the tickets. Note that both pairs of tickets are for a screening beginning at 7:30 PM on April 29th in NYC.
Ready? Set? Go!
1 - What Japanese actor takes on the role of L in L: Change The World?
2 - L uses several false names during his investigations. Name one.
3 - If you pre-register for the New York Anime Festival online, you get two free weeks of premium service at what anime website?
4 - Japanese pop star Sho Sakurai attended New York Comic Con earlier this year. What movie was Sakurai promoting?
5 - Who is Peter Tatara's favorite character on the TV series Lost?
6 - L is a boy genius, but while he's pretty smart, he's still got some bad habits. Name one.
7 - What event in Brooklyn will the New York Anime Festival be attending on May 2 and 3?
8 - The band VAMPS will be playing in NYC this summer. Which two musicians are at the center of VAMPS?
9 - Japan Society in NYC is currently holding an exhibition on anime, manga, and video games. What's this exhibit called?
10 - NYAF 2008 held a musical event called The Far East To East Showcase. What venue was FETES held at?
11 - What video game website does Peter Tatara think should win a Webby Award?
12 - The New York Anime Festival is launching a comic and anime convention called C2E2 in Chicago. What are the dates of the first C2E2?
13 - C2E2 recently held a launch party at a Chicago bar. What was the name of this bar?
14 - VIZ Pictures put out an amazing movie about ping pong. What's this movie called?
15 - What event is going on at Kinokuniya Bookstore on May 1?
16 - What lolita fashion brand is at the center of the VIZ Pictures film Kamikaze Girls?
17 - Death Note illustrator Takeshi Obata did the character designs for which recent fighting game?
18 - Tatsuya Fujiwara plays Light in the Death Note films. Prior to Death Note, name two films in which he starred as a high school student battling to stay alive.
19 - The 2009 New York Anime Festival mascot contest is held in conjunction with which anime art website?
20 - What are the dates of the 2009 New York Anime Festival?
Confused by any of the questions. All have something to do with Death Note, NYAF, NYCC, C2E2, or VIZ. Further, the answers to all can be found across NYAF's MySpace, Facebook, and Twitter accounts as well as the blog www.mediumatlarge.net.
One of my favorite days each month is not pay day nor is it when my copy of Lego Brickmaster arrives in the mail, but the day that Algonquin Books own Criag Popelars email newsletter Annotations hits my in box. This month, amongst many other nuggets and gems from Craig is the following:
Hazards to Avoid at Book Expo America
1. Snuggie readings in the Dianetics booth.
2. Deep-fried turkey legs.
3. Carnie folk working the teacups ride in the HarperCollins booth.
4. Simon & Schuster's Wendy Sheanin claiming that she's never been kissed and then stunning booksellers with a spot-on rendition of "I Dreamed a Dream" from Les Miserables.
5. Stinging nettles, poison ivy, hemlock, and blue-green algae that Amy Stewart decorates Algonquin booth with to promote Wicked Plants.
6. Lance Fensterman on a Segway drinking a cup of McDonald's coffee.
7. Extremely pale woman and dwarf offering you Turkish Delight if you just increase your frontlist order.
8. Making eye contact.
9. Spontaneous dance-off between George Gibson and Carl Lennertz, with Eric Price playing role of human beat-box.
10. Henna tattoos.
11. Somalian pirates carrying tote bags that read, "Books Fall Open, You Fall In, Den We Kill Ya!"
Safe travels, and we look forward to seeing all of you in New York.
Thanks for turning our pages,
Wednesday, April 22, 2009
It's Webby season! In just a few weeks, the winners of the 13th Annual Webby Awards -- honoring the best and brightest on the internet -- will be revealed, and while most of the winners will be picked by a braintrust including Beck, David Bowie, Arianna Huffington, Matt Groening, and Harvey Weinstein, the Webbys are giving power to you and me in their People's Voice Awards.
So, we strongly recommend you do your civic duty and give a big thumb's up to your favorite websites and online technology.
Are we asking you to vote for www.mediumatlarge.net or www.nycomiccon.com? No, we're not that selfish, but as serendipity would have it, our friends at The Escapist have been nominated for The People’s Voice Award for Best Game-Related Website this year. So if you're struggling with who to vote for in the Game-Related Website category, know that The Escapist gets a gold star over here.
Here's how to vote...
Sign up for a free account at http://pv.webbyawards.com/
Click on the "Website - Vote Now" link
Click on "Games-Related" under Entertainment
Voting ends April 30!
The NYAF Mascot contest we are running with The Otaku is heating up with about 50 entries so far, you can see all of them right here. Enter soon because the contest ends next week!
Also, The Daily Sun, New York covers the contest in today's edition, see if you can spot the coverage by following this link.
Tuesday, April 21, 2009
Want to see the first batch of our C2E2 Launch Party pictures? We've got images of the party, the convention center, and last week's Lost up right here...
Monday, April 20, 2009
I just completed my panel at the London Book Fair on the subject of marketing translated and other “difficult” books (pictured here is the our rapt audience). My piece of the chat was to focus on face to face marketing, and specifically how book fairs can be used as a marketing tool (or how they should or could be used anyway). I learned by watching DC’s John Cunningham on panels that leading with a bold statement is always more compelling than speaking in general terms. So for my turn at the mic, I firmly pronounced the death of trade book fairs as an entity. Now, based on the bustle around me here at the Fair as I type this, they aren’t dead yet, but I do think trade book fairs need to morph and adapt or we will be raising a toast to them over a hole in the ground remembering when they were relevant.
At New York Comic Con we hosted about 5,000 professionals which consisted of librarians, booksellers, comic creators, publishers, rights professionals, licensing agents, comic retailers, etc. In our post show research when asked why they attended NYCC, the number one answer was to meet talent and get autographs (followed by networking with peers and conducting meetings). The most prolific online reviewer at Amazon.com has written over 5,000 book reviews, yet they are not a “trade professional". Trade people are fans, fans are taking on characteristics of trade professionals. The traditional lines of who is “the public” and who is “the trade" are blurring as fast as the channels used to publicize new books to readers are fragmenting. BookExpo must be in the middle of that entire transition with a proposition that solves our customers business needs.
I apologize for the rant, but sitting on the panel this afternoon and discussing new forms of marketing with my fellow panelists ( Chad W. Post of Open Letter Books/Three Percent, Abby Blachly of LibraryThing, Bob Stein of Institute for the Future of the Book and Mark Thwaite of Independent Foreign Fiction Prize and ReadySteadyBook.com) it drove home with me just how BEA must continue to evolve as a platform the same way all other forms of marketing are. Library Thing’s early reviewer program is a great example of the line between trade and fan blurring. The program offers ARC’s from publishers to Library Thing members and assure the match is appropriate (if the ARC is a book of military history and the member has 90% romance books in his/her collection, they won’t give that member the ARC). For the reader it’s a huge coup to get an advance copy of something. Abby noted that on many occasions the member then blogs the title to share it with friends. Chad mentioned that when Open Letter participated in the program, a third of the people that received the Open Letter ARC signed up for Open Letter’s subscription program and blogged about the book.
Non trade people, acting like trade people and building buzz. Trade book fairs aren't dead but they could a little of that energy that non trade thinking brings.
The New York Anime Festival and VIZ Pictures are partnering to hold a special DEATH NOTE Day at the largest Japanese bookstore in North America -- New York City's Kinokuniya Bookstore! Taking place Tuesday, April 28, Kinokuniya Bookstore (located at 1073 Avenue of the Americas in Manhattan) will present an evening of DEATH NOTE events in celebration of the theatrical release of the third DEATH NOTE film -- L, change the WorLd.
DEATH NOTE Day Event Schedule
6:30 PM: DEATH NOTE Anime Screening. Get a glimpse of the series that spawned the movies with this special screening of the very first episode of the DEATH NOTE anime. Discover the world of Light, L, and Ryuk again for the first time.
7:00 PM: DEATH NOTE Giveaway. Free tickets to L, change the WorLd as well as DEATH NOTE manga, DVDs, and other prizes from VIZ Pictures are all up for grabs in this special DEATH NOTE giveaway.
DEATH NOTE: L, change the WorLd will screen for two nights -- April 29th and 30th -- in theaters across the U.S. A subtitled version will be presented on April 29th and an English-dubbed version on April 30th with L's voice played by Alessandro Juliani, reprising his role from the anime series. Tickets for this special event are available at presenting theater box offices and online. For a complete list of theatre locations and prices, please visit www.FathomEvents.com.
UPDATE (4/20) - DEATH NOTE Day is April 28, not March 28 as was originally posted. Also, the event kicks off at 6:30 PM, not 5:30 PM as was originally posted.
Japanese pop star Ai Kawashima is coming to NYC to perform at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden's Sakura Matsuri on May 2-3, but for fans who can't wait, Kinokuniya Bookstore (1073 Avenue of the Americas) will be holding a special meet and greet with Ai on Friday, May 1! Ai's a chart topping singer, best selling author, and budding seiyuu, and she'll be spending the evening before her Sakura Matsuri concert with fans at Kinokuniya!
4 PM - One Piece Screening
One Piece: The Desert Princess and the Pirates - Adventure in Alabasta features the voice of Ai Kawashima in the role of Mayday as well as in the film's ending theme. Take in this film - courtesy of FUNimation - prior to Ai's arrival.
5:30 PM - Ai Kawashima Appearance
Ai comes to Kinokuniya to speak about her life, music, fans, and coming to America.
Ai is a rising star in the world of Japanese music, and you definitely don't want to miss this rare opportunity to meet her in NYC. I'll see you at Kinokuniya on May 1!
Sunday, April 19, 2009
So, the whole C2E2 team was out in Chicago this past week to tour the convention center, host a party for Chi-town professionals, retailers, and creators, and -- oh yeah -- announce Alex Ross as our first Guest of Honor. We're all back in NYC now, trying to catch up on sleep before getting back to the office, but I wanted to hop online a bit to give you a preview of our Chicago pictures. Expect much more on C2E2.com this week.
The Brooklyn Botanic Garden celebrates spring with Sakura Matsuri on May 2 and 3. It's a fantastic Japanese cultural festival that - in recent years - has also become a destination for anime fans. And, this year, for the first time, the Brooklyn Botanic Garden is recognizing this with anime programming, guests, and booths. Oh, and they want to put cosplayers on TV.
Before Sakura Matsuri opens to the public, the Brooklyn Botanic Garden holds a special Media Day aimed at attracting the eyes of local press.
This year, they want to feature cosplayers at their Media Day, giving NYC-area cosplayers the opportunity to strut their stuff in front of TV, magazine, and newspaper cameras and reporters.
Here's what they're looking for --
Big, over the top, take no prisoners costumes; not traditional Asian, and non-kimono preferred; both male and female cosplayers.
Sakura Matsuri's Media Day will be from 10 AM to 12 PM on Tuesday, April 28. If you'd like to apply, shoot an email firstname.lastname@example.org and include a link or photo of the costume you would like to wear.
Posted by Peter Tatara at 12:02 PM
Reed Vice President
New York ComicCon
New York Anime Fest
203.840.5507 (o) 203.417.3607 (m)
Sent from my BlackBerry Wireless Handheld - Please excuse any typos!
Posted by Lance Fensterman at 6:50 AM
Saturday, April 18, 2009
Going to be in London this week? Me too! I'm flying in for a cricket match on Sunday (no kidding, my first!) then meeting up with a bunch of publishing friends Sunday night. Email me if you want to join us and I'll give you details on the meet up.
On Monday I've got appointments all day, but I'm also doing a panel; at the London Book Fair if you are interested, its called Marketing Translations and Other “Difficult” Books, 11am on Monday. Read more about it here....
See you in London perhaps!
Friday, April 17, 2009
We had about 300 members of the heart and soul Chicago's comic community in Wrigleyville last night for an amazing launch party for C2E2. I only took 1 picture, and you can't see anything at all, but some other folks from the team got a lot more we'll be posting. Sorry, for the low fi image, but I wanted to prove that I at least had the presence of mind to snap a pic.
Before the party, I did a 2 hour confab with about 20 fans from Chicagoland to find out exactly what kind of con they want us to build. I was taken to school on what the fan boys and fan firld of greater Cook County want from C2E2 and rest assured, we will be exceeding all expectations!
The party itself was great, the building was jamming and we had a great mix of people in the room. Retailers like Graham Crackers, Chicago Comics, Vigilante Press, Third Coast Comics, Heroes & Dreams, Challengers and some cool custom toy store owners as well. Friends from Devil's Due, Haven, our buddy John from Diamond and the sultan of the CTA Steve Rotterdam of DC all made it out for the night. Had a good chat with CBR and Newsarama not to mention learned that I think Chris from the Around Comics podcast's father and my father might have gone to high school together. I got to meet Brian Azzarello and his wife Jill Thompson and of course our Chicago king pin Sal Abbinanti.
I didn't get out of there until almost 11, but not because I was rocking out on Guitar Hero on the stage as one of my co-workers was, I was pressing the flesh baby! What I heard over and over again was make the show about Chicago (let it spill out into the city and fill it with local artists), along with lots and lots of other ideas, requests, suggestions. So now we've got 364 days to give the fans exactly what they want, but Alex Ross as a Hometown Guest of Honor is a pretty damn good start!
I've got a lot of info about where we will be hosting the show (Lakeside at McCormick Place) and more pics and the next 24 hours....
Like Japan? Like jazz? Well, then, you may like Nippon Jazz NYC, a concert series at the Blue Owl Cocktail Room (196 Second Ave) in NYC. The next event takes place April 19th and features Yuka Mito (www.myspace.com/yukakomito). For more, visit www.meetup.com/nippon-jazz-nyc-meetup-group/.
Thursday, April 16, 2009
Tonight, in Wrgilleyville, the comic community of Chicago – creators, retailers, publishers, scholars and select fans – gathered for drinks, eats, games, networking and to launch the biggest pop culture extravaganza the shores of Lake Michigan have ever seen – C2E2!
Besides playing Rock Band, Wii Bowling and having beers together, I was happy to announce to the crowd that none other than Alex Ross would be our very first Guest of Honor! More than that, he’s our local Cornerstone Guest of Honor and will be designing a one of a kind piece of art for the inaugural C2E2 show poster!
Want more? Then more you will get! The official web site for the show was launched tonight as well and can be find at C2E2.com and sure, its a little sparse right now, we’ll have a volunteer sign up form up within a week and ticket sales will go live within 3 weeks. Sign up for the newsletter or watch the blog for special early bird ticket discounts and LOTS more guest announcements.
When we set out to do C2E2 I told anyone who would listen that we would not be doing this small. We are planning a massive con right on the shores of Lake Michigan with a guest list like this city has not seen in years if ever at all. Who better to kick all of that off and create our very first poster than Chicago’s own, Alex Ross.
Stay tuned guys, this is only going to get bigger and bigger over the next 364 days.
Here’s Alex’s bio in case you live in a cave:
Alex Ross’s photorealistic paintings have garnered attention throughout the comics world and beyond. He has made a name for himself as both an artist and a storyteller. He studied illustration at the American Academy of Art in Chicago, then honed his craft as a storyboard artist before entering the comics field. His 1993 miniseries Marvels (Marvel Comics) opened a wider acceptance for painted comics. He followed that with the series Kingdom Come for DC Comics, which remains one of the most successful graphic novels in comics history. He painted a series of tabloids for DC Comics celebrating Superman, Batman, Captain Marvel, and Wonder Woman, which were then collected as The World’s Greatest Super-Heroes. Ross co-created the Earth X projects for Marvel and Justice for DC. He is currently working on Superpowers for Dynamite Entertainment and Avengers/Invaders for Marvel. He was the subject of the 2003 book Mythology: The DC Comics Art of Alex Ross (Pantheon). His non-comics work includes creating the poster for the 2002 Academy Awards®, the opening credits for Spider-Man 2, and multiple covers for TV Guide and Village Voice. For more information, please visit www.alexrossart.com
Wednesday, April 15, 2009
I’ve spent the last two weeks talking with executives at a dozen of the largest publishers in BookExpo about the upcoming show and the vision for where the show is going for 2010. The response has been all over the publishing map, some publishers are extremely excited, ready to partner and re-imagine the show together. Other publishers are at the other end of the spectrum, still working on re-imagining there own business and the industry gathering, is just not a priority to them in this climate. It’s been an extremely interesting PowerPoint armed road show for me and it will continue for the next few weeks.
A consistent message I’ve heard is of course that of cutting back on everything; personnel, booths, authors, and yes, the advance reading copies (ARC’s) that the publishers plan to give out at the show. Economic conditions sometimes force us to make choices that we would not otherwise make, but that might be good for us nonetheless. For the first time, because of technology and other influences, we are actually empowered to begin measuring how to give out ARC's, in fact it's a necessity. This is all about leveraging change to our advantage. Less ARC's at BEA is a condition of a changing economy and tightening budgets, but marks a strategic shift for publishers. I think the shift away from "blind" ARC handouts could prove to be one simple step in changing the approach publishers have to how the engage the industry at BEA.
The goal was never to give out as many ARC’s to as many people as possible at BEA, but somehow, to some, but not all publishers, that’s what it become. To some publishers a measure of success was the sheer number galley’s they gave out. It reminds me of a conversation with a publisher after BEA when I asked if the show was a success for them. They answered it was because they gave out all of the catalogs they brought. What if half those catalogs were lost in transit to the show?
Marketing is no longer carpet bombing, its precision strikes, we all know this. The goal should be getting the right ARC to the right attendee to influence that tastemaker be them a librarian, lit blogger, bookseller, mass retailer, rights professional or any of the other segments of the industry represented at BookExpo. The dramatic shift in budgets may force that change in strategy and execution for the better.
Less ARC’s means less carpet bombing and with the right approach more precision marketing and segmentation. What if a bookseller/librarian/media member got to hear an author speak on a stage or in a publisher’s booth. On the way out the publisher could scan the individuals badge, have a conversation and then mail (or better yet, email) the ARC of first few chapters to the individual? Lower cost, higher probability for success.
The truth is, the professionals, the influencers, the people in the aisles to publishers wish to reach, sway, influence and build buzz with are not collecting ARC’s, in fact the opposite, many want as few things to take home with them. They want the right book(s) not the most books. Sure some need quantity to take back to the store or the branch to share, but that is the exception and can easily be arranged.
Less galley’s means influencing the influencers in ways more effective and measurable than simply calling it success because the publisher gave them all out. It means saving money, increasing interaction, putting the author at the front of the transaction and actually building the buzz, not just handing out the swag.
Lass ARC’s at BEA can be a good thing and represents a new opportunity based on new options and new ways of being able to conduct our business.
Tuesday, April 14, 2009
So, C2E2 is just about a year away. How are we celebrating? A shindig for professionals and creators in Chi-town! We're heading off in a little bit and will be tweeting, photographing, and filming everything. Expect photos and clips when we're home, but follow our adventure live on twitter at...
Oh, be sure to keep your eyes on twitter during our party (April 16 from 6:30 to 9:30) as C2E2 may just reveal our first guest.
Posted by Peter Tatara at 6:39 PM
Monday, April 13, 2009
I was looking over the registration and with about 6 weeks to go we already have all 50 states and about 35 countries represented from attendees that have registered to attend Book Expo. That's my cool stat for the day, what's yours?
Today, I've got one such opportunity. The NYAF 2009 Official Mascot Contest!
On April 15, NYAF’s mascot contest will go live on partner website theOtaku.com, with the winning art to be featured as NYAF's mascot throughout the show. Contest prizes include tickets to the New York Anime Festival and 50 -- yes, 50 -- manga from sponsor Del Rey Manga.
Between April 15 and April 29th, theOtaku.com, Del Rey Manga, and the New York Anime Festival welcome artists and anime fans from around America to think about what "Anime" and "New York City" mean to them and draw these thoughts into an original character. Ten finalists will be put on display at the New York Anime Festival booth at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden's Sakura Matsuri (May 2nd and 3rd), and Sakura Matsuri attendees will then vote for their favorite, with the character receiving the most votes crowned the New York Anime Festival's 2009 mascot.
The 2009 New York Anime Festival mascot will grace the convention's program guide and appear on signs throughout the event. Additionally the winner will be profiled in the New York Anime Festival's program guide beside their mascot, receive a copy of all of the New York Anime Festival's 2009 merchandise, and take home 10 weekend passes. Further, sponsor Del Rey Manga will be providing the winner an instant collection -- 50 volumes of manga. The contest's nine finalists will each receive one weekend pass to the New York Anime Festival and series starter packs from Del Rey containing the first volumes of Sayonara, Zetsubou-Sensei, Orange Planet, and Yokai Doctor.
To enter the contest and for official rules, please visit theOtaku.com on April 15.
UPDATE! THE CONTEST IS NOW LIVE AT...
I read in Shelf Awareness today that the American Library Association announced that Judith Krug passed away this weekend. Judith was the founder of Banned Books Week back in 1982 and she had been head of the ALA's Office for Intellectual Freedom since 1967. I met Judith at a PEN America panel event lasy year in DC (in fact it was where I first heard, first hand, the story of the Connecticut librarians that challenged the FBI and Patriot Act's right to pull reader records from libraries). I shared a cab with Judith to the airport after the panel and learned more about readers rights and the anti censorship movement than my collected prior knowledge combined. She was a passionate advocate for intellectual freedom on all fronts and will be missed....
Here is her obit from the AP.
Posted by Lance Fensterman at 8:46 AM
One last reminder, that if you are a professional or know one in Chicago, we are hosting our C2E2 kick off event (one year out from the show) this Thursday. Professionals, creators and retailers are all welcome at the Official C2E2 Launch Party taking place Thursday, April 16, 2009 from 6:30pm - 9:30pm at John Barleycorn in Wrigleyville!
Come join me and the rest of the team from New York Comic Con and The New York Anime Festival for an evening of food, drinks and announcements one year from the first C2E2: The Chicago Comic & Entertainment Expo!
RSVP Here for the Official C2E2 Kick-Off Party! Space is limited -- you must RSVP to attend.
See you in Chicago I hope!
Sunday, April 12, 2009
The Japan External Trade Organization reported a few weeks ago (thanks to Anime News Network, read the real journalism on the subject they produced by clicking here!) that for 2007 the size of the Japanese Anime related market in the U.S. was $2.8 billion. That’s down about 40% from it’s estimated peak in 2003. I was actually surprised that DVD sales, again as estimated by JETRO) have ONLY fallen $100 million if 5 years from $420 million to $315 million. What will be truly fascinating is to see the numbers for 2008 DVD sales (the JETRO numbers are for 2007, the most recent accounting) as that is when the bottom truly fell out…..
The report also got me wondering how broadly they define "character goods". If one was looking for news in this, it would be detailed breakdown of that category showing where the growth and softness is.....
ANN has a nice breakdown of the JETRO report by title, sales category and year.
Saturday, April 11, 2009
I wrote about my pal and the voice I came of age listening to on the radio in a previous post you can read right here when he was unceremoniously canned from the Twin Cities biggest AM radio station. Well as predicted, old Tommy Mischke has reappeared doing a daily two hour rant that is like nothing you've heard on the radio before. Even more so because he's not actually on the radio. He's doing a daily streaming broadcast for the big Twin Cites Alt Weekly (and Village Voice publication) City Pages. Take a look at his page here where you can catch archived shows, read his blog and subscribe via iTunes.
Just trust me on this one, you like NYCC? You Like BEA? My taste is not awful, weird at times but not awful, Mischke is a genius of sarcasm, social commentary, storytelling and dark humor.
On a different note, the radio voice of my childhood and the voice my parents generation came of age listening to, Steve Cannon, passed away this week. He was a Bob Shepard like voice that echoed all through the Upper Midwest and a real legend in AM radio. You can read a great piece Mischke did on him right here as it appeared in the Minneapolis Star Tribune that sums up the man pretty well.....
Posted by Lance Fensterman at 10:22 AM
Thursday, April 9, 2009
How many authors are signing at BEA this year? I'm not going to lie, I haven't counted them myself, but I'm told around 400. So how do you choose which authors to meet? By checking out the entire list on our web site, that's how silly!
See the entire BEA autographing schedule (so far anyway) right here and scroll to end to see the two links for the pds with everyone.
Wednesday, April 8, 2009
After a long, grey winter, the sky's turned blue again and -- gasp -- I think I can ever hear a few birds sing in between the honks, whistles, and rustles of Manhattan. I'm excited to have spring here as it means warmer weather, flip-flops on casual Fridays, and the start of the lead up to the 2009 New York Anime Festival.
I'm very proud to announce that tickets are now live at newyorkanimefestival.com. We got tickets up early this year, and all are available at special, discounted prices. Online, Friday tickets are $35, Saturday tickets are $40, Sunday tickets are $35, and Weekend tickets (good for all three days) are $55. At the Javits Center, all tickets will be priced $5 higher. Further, if you pick up your ticket online, you'll be able to bypass the registration lines on-site -- meaning registering online will save you time and money.
And, for the first time, I've got a special bonus for all fans who sign up for tickets at newyorkanimefestival.com -- two free weeks of premium service at anime video portal crunchyroll.com through a special offer located in NYAF's registration confirmation e-mail. If Crunchyroll is new to you, it's an online video community that offers licensed, legal full-length episodes and movies including Gintama, Naruto Shippuden, REBORN!, and Shugo Chara! We're excited to be working with the good folks at Crunchyroll this year and hope to do a good deal more with them this spring, summer, and fall.
Expect news about guests, VIP packages, contests, and programming in the coming months, and to make sure you stay on top of things, keep your eyes on NYAF's official website (www.newyorkanimefestival.com) and -- well -- right here.
Now, though, I've got to go as I've got to pick out which flip-flops I'll be wearing on Friday. Hashin!
Tuesday, April 7, 2009
NYC’s Japan Society put together a cosplay party only a few weeks back to celebrate their KRAZY anime and manga exhibit, but while the party’s now over, its spirit lives on an online cosplay contest! Click on over to Japan Society…
And vote for your favorite cosplayer. The winner will take home a copy of Street Fighter IV, and just by voting, you’ve got a shot at winning some Naruto and Bleach DVDs!
Are you a fan living in the Chicago area? Do you have a brain? If you've answered yes to these two questions then C2E2 wants to hear from you!
We are planning a ConFab session on Thursday the 16th at 4pm at John Barleycorn's in Wriggleyville. We are a looking for a dozen or so fans that are willing to share ideas and tell us how to build the most kick ass pop culture con in downtown Chicago next year.....
We get your brains for a few hours but what do you get out of the deal? How about an invitation to our launch party that begins shortly after the con fab ends? Open bar, tasty food and cool people (plus a few announcements about the con).
Interested? Email Kim to donate your brain to the launch of C2E2, the biggest con downtown Chicago has ever seen!!!!
After posting about the new authors stages yesterday, i thought an overview of all of the author events at BEA was in order, and who better than the man that creates them! The following is from Roger Bilheimer who has been working on BEA in some capacity for over a decade......
The thing that has me the most enthused about this year’s BEA is that after setting an agenda for expanding our Special Events 10 years ago, we are not only still doing it, but we are doing it in a way that is bigger and better than ever. We have lots of content at BEA. We always have. But now we live in a world where content can be uploaded, downloaded, streamed, broadcasted, written about, blogged about, you name it! So we’re not just doing this for ourselves anymore … we’re not just promoting books to each other and “positioning” future bestsellers … we are putting like-minded people together to create dialogue, advance new ideas, and stimulate thoughtful discussion. This is a great thing to be able to do.
We introduced our first Opening Night Keynote in 1998 with an appearance by Tom Wolfe. It was a great risk for the publisher, FS & G had no idea how well it would go, and there was a lot on the line. But Jeff Seroy supported us, and the evening was a smash hit, with great media coverage the following morning. Ever since then we have been devising ways to get more venues for more authors, more venues for more authors, more venues for more authors.
This being the case, I feel that this year we are achieving a new level. Our Author Stage initiative is an important undertaking because it symbolizes everything we have been about, and everything we plan to be. I haven’t felt this excited about a special event initiative at BEA since we launched Opening Night with Tom Wolfe. Now, when I talk to publicists, we don’t have to limit our discussion to the Author Breakfasts or Author Autographing Program, we can talk about all the ways that we might be able to pair authors up, and find unique opportunity. It is so great to have the flexibility to create a “Literary Lions” panel with John Irving and Pat Conroy on the one hand, and have a stage right on the show floor to honor Captain Sullenberger on the other.
It’s all about continuity. I’m a publicist. I went to my first BEA (ABA!) in the early 80s. We were creating buzz then and we’re creating buzz now. BEA hasn’t changed, it has evolved and adapted and I think the reason that I’m particularly excited about the show this year is because we are in the middle of a significant “adaptation” and this is always energizing. Especially when you’re building on such a long and strong tradition.
Monday, April 6, 2009
Last week we announced that Captain "Sully" Sullenberger, would be appearing at BEA doing a short talk and signing. In the post I mentioned that he'd be appearing at one of our author stages on the show floor (The Uptown and Downtown stages), so just what the hell are these stages, where can you find Sully? I just got these renderings of what the new Uptown and Downtown stages on the show floor at BEA are going to resemble (read the press release about the stages here in case you have no idea what I'm talking about) and I think they look pretty nice...
The point in building these stages was twofold; First, to create another platform where authors, the media and attendees could interact with each other and buzz could be built around the books and authors at BEA. The second (and it was just one of many decisions to this aim) was to restore energy, activity, buzz and relevancy to the show floor. We found that too often we were pulling people off of the show floor for one reason or another (conference sessions, special events, meetings, sleep!).
Take a look at the stages during the show and make sure to check out the events. In a few weeks we'll have all of the programming that will take place on the stages posted on the web site.....
Saturday, April 4, 2009
Friday, April 3, 2009
New York ComicCon
New York Anime Fest
203.840.5507 (o) 203.417.3607 (m)
Sent from my BlackBerry Wireless Handheld - Please excuse any typos!
Posted by Lance Fensterman at 11:30 PM
Thursday, April 2, 2009
Man, it's been a while since I've rattled off some Cliff's notes, but here goes:
- I cannot tell you how many emails I got and how many phone calls our customer service center got about Shelf Awareness's annual April Fools story on BEA.....Read it, it is awesome, but I really owe Mutter for this.....Check out the hilarious story here.
- BEA is doing Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter, so keep up with what's happening on the show in more ways. Why? Because we all need friends, be ours and we'll be yours, promise! I posted some links and widgets on the right nav of the blog, but find us on any of these sites and we'll be life long virtual pals, I promise.
- Got an email today from Avis First for a free audio book download for being a member. I just think that's a really good idea and a cool example of promoting books mainstream. And it's free and a travel a ton.
- The Skylight Books Blog has a cool post, with pic, pushing mini comics. Nice to see indy bookstores pushing the cool indy graphic pulp too! Check it here.
- I really love the Chronicle Books Blog. They get it right in that the blog reflects the Chronicle brand and I WANT to check it out to see what cool stuff they are going to show in each and every post; Martin Yan recipes, cool crafty stuff that Gen Xers would actually wanna make, awesome visual excerpts from their books. Just trust me, its a really nice blog. Take a look for yourself here.
- My pal Marty at Common Good Books in Good Old St. Paul has a nice interview about how Garrison Keillor's bookstore is doing. Read it here.
Posted by Lance Fensterman at 2:00 PM
Wednesday, April 1, 2009
I am extremely excited and proud to share with you that Captain Chesley "Sully" Sullenberger will be appearing at BEA as a Guest of Honor to discuss his new book! You, dear blog-o-philes are the first to hear about it.
Sully, appearing on behalf of William Morrow, will do a talk and be available to sign a promotional piece about his book following his speech. He'll be appearing at on one of the two new author stages located on the heart of the show floor that we built this year with just these kind of events in mind.
Even more impressive though is the fact that the jet Sullenberger guided to safety touched down in the Hudson river exceptionally close to the Javits Center. This will be his first visit to the site since the actual event......
This is pretty amazing guys, and a huge thanks to William Morrow and our pal Seale Ballenger for helping to make it all happen.