Calling all Chicago fans of indie and creator-owned comics. The inaugural Indie Comix Expo (ICE) will take place April 24, 2015 from 6 p.m. to 11 p.m. at Reggies' Rock Club. The show is brought to you by the gang over at King Bone Press. They put together a kick-ass Kickstarter campaign and have surpassed their initial goal, with tons of great incentives that you should definitely get before they're gone. Below is a Q&A I did with Ray (King Bone Press), one of the organizers of the show. These guys definitely nailed a winning formula: comics + music + beers = a trifecta of awesome.
GNN: What is the inspiration behind starting a show like this?
Indie Comix Expo (ICE): Being Indie comic creators ourselves, we know how difficult and expensive it can be to exhibit at one of the big conventions. A lot of local creators can't even get a table at some of these shows because the more popular these cons get, the bigger out of town names they attract. We decided we wanted to put on a truly indie event that's low cost and low hassle for creators and fans alike. So we started throwing ideas around, and what we came up with is pretty much a celebration of independent comics, indie music and small businesses. It's going to be a blast.
GNN: At this point, your Kickstarter campaign is almost funded or could be by the time this is published. How awesome is that for an inaugural show? (*NOTE: the show surpassed its funding goal!)
ICE: The response has been great! With King Bone Press we've established a pretty loyal fan base over the years, and they always show their support. But with this Kickstarter we've really had to try to reach a more specific audience, and the results have been great so far.
GNN: What type of feedback have you received from fans and creators?
ICE: The creators are really excited! Everyone is really pumped about being a part of something new, cool and unique. And the fans have been great with spreading the word and helping get more eyes on the project.
GNN: Now, the show falls on the same weekend as C2E2. Have you guys approached that show's organizers with perhaps an idea of partnership or just a mutual helping hand, with regard to having creators check out your show?
ICE: No, not at all. We're not affiliated with the show in any way. And while we're not trying to step on their toes, we do want to provide an independent alternative for fans and creators alike, and even for folks who attend the big show and are looking for something different to do afterwards. We love C2E2 a lot, and we hope everyone can make it to both shows!
GNN: Aside from comics, here's the part that I love about this show: beer and live music. What has fan reaction been to that?
ICE: Comics, music and beer are absolutely meant to be enjoyed together. We're so excited to have an awesome venue like Reggie's that really gives us the flexibility to celebrate all of our passions at once. They have amazing stage areas, plenty of room for our creators and vendors to exhibit, a huge selection of awesome beers as well as really fantastic food! It's going to be part convention, but it's definitely all party.
GNN: Are you afraid of having beer or other drinks near original art?!
ICE: Personally, I like to have a beer while I'm drawing comics, but for ICE, we'll do our best to make sure no unfortunate spills happen.
GNN: Any final thoughts you'd like to tell people about the show?
ICE: Yeah! We're going to have a lot more stuff coming down the pipe soon. We're hoping to announce a few new creators in the coming weeks. We're going to be offering VIP ticket upgrades on our website once the Kickstarter is funded, which will include an early entry open bar period and other exclusives. And we're working on putting together our anthology/program guide that will be exclusive to the show. There's so much exciting stuff, and we can't wait to share it with everyone!
A big thanks to Ray from ICE for taking the time to do this Q&A. If you find yourself in Chicago on April 24th or hell, live there, check out the inaugural Indie Comix Expo and have a beer for me. Cheers!