Top moment of the weekend: Ted Naifeh liked my t-shirt! It took all my self-control not to squee at him. And not just like, “Hey, I like your t-shirt,” but as in, “Wow, where did you get that?” Yi! And…more Courtney Crumrin! Yay!

Cecil Castellucci at the Minx panel — despite a marketing spiel that still has me dubious and critical, she obviously loved creating P.L.A.I.N. Janes, and it’s such a great title, it gives me hope for the whole line. Now if they would just bring in some more female comics creators, I’d be happier.

Meeting and chatting with a whole slew of people at drinks Friday night, including but not limited to Mark Siegel (of To Dance fame) and Gina Gagliano from First Second Books, Jessica Abel (though I didn’t get to meet her too much, I saw her from across the room, and I was happy!), George O’Connor (creator of Journey Into Mohawk Country, and as passionate about history as you’d want him to be, and wearing a snazzy velvet coat). It’s always interesting to meet the people behind the comics, and it was nice to have a chance to actually talk to folks a bit rather than just gush for a moment and then move on like a good Con person. Apparently Alison Bechdel was in the room and I missed her! Bryn Mawr will now take back my degree. Sniffle!

Breakfast with Brigid from Mangablog at the Tick Tock Diner (it is incredibly nice to have an all night diner in your hotel, believe me.) Always a great conversationalist — I only wish we’d had more time.

Stephen King is badass. That is all.

Dinner with Ellen Kushner and Delia Sherman — two authors I greatly admire, and was so honored to meet and have Korean BBQ with (mmm, Korean BBQ.) To me, Swordspoint is a most perfect book, and Through a Brazen Mirror holds a special place in my heart (thanks Jen!). They were just what I thought they might be like, and honestly, that’s the coolest thing to find out about your favorite authors.

The American Anime Awards, which while it was the first, was not the first annual (Eva has asked me to point this out) as you can only have a first, and then a second annual. Which is fine by me. The taiko drumming at the beginning was amazing, and the event itself was a lot of fun, and everyone there gave short and sweet speeches. Though really, it’s anime, so while I understood why all the of the “Babes of Anime” were fawning over Pierre Bernard of Late Night with Conan (ok, so really I don’t know why they were fawning over him, but whatever) I kept thinking — where are all the hot men? Don’t we ladies get a bit of fan service too? Take heed, Anime Awards planners!

The after party there was the most fun, mainly because everyone was relaxing and kicking back, and John Shableski was willing to introduce us to anyone. And I mean anyone. Good job to all the planners, including Chris Oarr of ADV, one of my fellow panelists from Friday.

And finally, having a milkshake and fries at the afore-mentioned all-night diner, still in our swanky Anime Awards outfits, capped off the whole experience beautifully.

  • Robin B.

    | She/Her Teen Librarian, Public Library of Brookline

    Editor in Chief

    Robin E. Brenner is Teen Librarian at the Brookline Public Library in Massachusetts. She has chaired the American Library Association Great Graphic Novels for Teens Selection List Committee, the Margaret A. Edwards Award Committee, and served on the Michael L. Printz Award Committee. She is currently the President of the Graphic Novels and Comics Round Table for ALA. She was a judge for the 2007 Eisner awards, helped judge the Boston Globe Horn Book Awards in 2011, and contributes to the Good Comics for Kids blog at School Library Journal. She regularly gives lectures and workshops on graphic novels, manga, and anime at comics conventions including New York and San Diego Comic-Con and at the American Library Association’s conferences. Her guide, Understanding Manga and Anime (Libraries Unlimited, 2007), was nominated for a 2008 Eisner Award.

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