The Small Press Expo is one of the best comic conventions each year, highlighting fantastic indie and small press comics. The problem is, there’s so many, how do you decide who gets the limited space?
The convention has announced a new process to handle registration for exhibitors after difficulties experienced during the 2013 show sign-up. Last year, the convention changed table sign-up to a “first come, first serve” digital process that overwhelmed their system causing numerous headaches. This lead them to rethink the entire process for 2014.
For 2014, the convention has announced a split registration system. Half the tables will be awarded by an open lottery and half by invitation. And most importantly, total transparency as to how people get their tables and how the wait list works. The convention is putting together a simple initial registration and a lengthy window of registration so those interested in exhibiting won’t be dealing with website crashes. This will be a truly random and fair process to reserve your tables.
While the convention doesn’t want to broadly “curate” the show, they do work on a theme for each year, consisting of a group of guests that meet that theme. But, that’s nothing new.
Also important is the creators and publishers who have supported the show over the years, on top of the new up and comers who bring amazing energy to the show. Prior to the lottery, SPX will reach out to those legacy supporters of SPX offering them a window of opportunity to commit to their table(s). If the table space is declined, it will then roll over to the Lottery pool and be available to all Lottery participants.
Here’s how it all breaks down:
- By early January SPX will notify all of the SPX Legacy members so everyone knows whether they need to register for the Lottery or not.
- In mid-January SPX will send out via both their exhibitor e-mail list and social media the start and end dates for Lottery registration. A web site will be provided to enter your information as well as further details on the registration process. SPX will also announce the final size of the number of tables in the Lottery pool.
- There will be a 3 week window to register for the Lottery, so they can avoid the crazy, mad rush to sign up online that plagued them last year. Weekly reminders will go out via their e-mail list and social media to be sure that this is kept on everyone’s radar.
The show has been fantastic every year, and having an overflowing amount of individuals interested in participating is a good problem to have. Here’s to an awesome 2014 SPX!