Thursday, November 29, 2007
I've been doing a lot of radio and podcasts for Our Gods Wear Spandex. Most of the radio has been little 10 minute segments on talk shows. But I've done some podcasts that go a bit more in-depth.
First up is Shadowdance, with Michelle Belanger and Chris Miller. This one was a lot of fun, Chris and Michelle come from a neopagan background but both know their stuff when it comes to comics. Go download from here.
There's also a podcast called Red Ice Creations, with Henrik Palmgren. Henrik has a great show and we had a great chat about the book and went further afield in the subscriber interview. Check the free podcast here.
Next is Tracy Twyman, former editor of Dagobert's Revenge. Tracy's done a lot of fascinating work over the years and it was a pleasure to finally speak with her. Check it out here.
I also did an NPR show called Sidetrack, though was having quite a bit of trouble with my asthma during it! I'm in the last segment and you can find that here.
There a couple others on the way, but I think this lot will give you a good idea. I must say I've gotten a lot of great feedback from these shows, even the local radio. With only a couple exceptions on a couple radio shows, everybody's read the book and had great things to say about it, so that's been very gratifying. There are a lot of comic fans out there, who aren't bogged down by some of the negative attitudes pervading too much of fandom these days. I hope the ideas in Spandex help to rejuvenate people's interest in the genre and from what I've heard from these people, it seems to be the case.
This is encouraging, because a recent visit to the Big Apple Con offered some disturbing portents. There were barely any fans under 30 in the dealer rooms or artist alley. Comics are doing fine and superheroes are doing fine, but superhero comics need a youth transfusion and need a bit sunshine. Compared to my pilgrimage to Dragon*Con, there seemed to be a startling lack of community at Big Apple, and most patrons seemed to be men in their mid-40's, dressed in gray or black clothing, mostly alone or in groups of two. This is a fairly large show in the backyard of Marvel and DC at a time of year when cons used to clean up. I got the feeling if two of the Heroes hotties hadn't been there, that show would have been dead. There's a lot of work to be done to broaden the appeal of the genre and a lot of fans out there don't seem to be too welcoming to new blood or new ideas. There are a lot of options out there, and fans should realize that they are ambassadors for the genre and the medium. I was struck by how open and warm and friendly most of the fans at Dragon*Con I met were, and think the reading end of the fan spectrum could use a bit of that now. I have high hopes for the digital initiatives in the offing, something I've been clamoring for for years. I have three kids and all of them spend most of their leisure time online. There's no going back. The stories, the attitudes, the flavor of the medium is going to change. That's incredibly exciting to me but, sadly, threatening to others.
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