I had a pretty good time in Chicago at the comic convention. I got in free, which is always nice, and I'm getting paid for the few articles I wrote for CBR (also nice). It's very exhausting, though. The convention center is pretty big and I was running all over the place, from panel to panel, booth to booth, looking for people to interview (and for the bathroom, which is never in a convenient place).
The best part of the weekend was the live art party Saturday night at this bar called The Black Beetle in downtown Chicago. A bunch of killer artists, like Jim Mahfood, Dave Crosland and Jose Garibaldi, painted some awesome pictures all night (I'll have some photos up on my flickr site soon) to the phat beats of some great DJs, one of whom was Mahfood's younger brother.
Another highlight was this writing seminar, for lack of a better term, conducted by one of my all-time favorite writers, Peter David. He discussed the necessity of character, story and plot, and the basic three-act structure of storytelling. It was a lot of fun and served to reinforce some key aspects of writing for me.
I was pretty wiped out on Monday when I had to drive home. I left Chicago around 9:30 and felt myself starting to nod off while driving at around 2. I got to Des Moines at 3, got gas, had lunch and did the final 130+ miles in about two hours. I would say that I don't want to do a drive like that again for a while, but seeing as how I'm heading to Pittsburgh tomorrow with my father...
The main reason for this trip is, I suppose, to attempt to convince my grandmother that she probably shouldn't be living alone anymore. Or, at least, that she should be living in Omaha where most of her family is, in case something happens. She shouldn't be driving anymore. She's 88 years old, y'know? Age catches up to all of us whether we want it to or not.
Other reasons for the trip include seeing my cousin (I finally get to meet his wife, Ann 2) and some of my dad's old friends. And, of course, the Cardinals/Pirates game (I think we're going Friday night). On TV it looks like a gorgeous stadium. I'll have pictures of the whole trip when we get back next week.
Anyway, like before, my cell phone will be on and I'll be able to check my email at least once a day.
(And it totally sucks that Jennie is coming to town this weekend and I'm gonna be in Pittsburgh.)