Wednesday, July 20, 2011



If you’re reading this sometime between Thursday July 21, 2011 and Sunday July 24, 2011 I’m either on a train or in the midst of a massive crow of my fellow comic, television, movies, video games, and internet fans.

I’m here pushing my way through to network with other professionals in those same industries.

It’ll be a struggle as it is every year, but I seem to survive.

For most of America who don’t go to such conventions, the most they’re ever going to hear about or see on the news are hundreds of people dressed in crazy costumes. Some you might recognize like Storm Troopers and Slave Girl Princess Leia, or characters from Japanese anime. The proper term for all that is Cosplayers.

What you’ll also see are promotions for blockbuster movies and television shows. These have taken over a lot of the con over the years. The annual invasion of San Diego by Hollywood.

Some people feel the con has lost its luster and become too big, gotten away from the heart of what started it all: comic books.

Well, that part is true, at least to some degree. As large as the con is, comic books take up a very small portion of the massive convention center.

But I want you to take a look at the whole. What are comic books, television shows, animation, movies, books, manga, video games, roll playing games, even Legos, have in common? They all originate from the imagination; whether it is the writer and artist who first came up with a costumed character that would go on to have a special effects extravaganza movie, or the fan who falls madly for the star faring pirate, or shirtless vampire, or school uniform wearing anime idol. The imagination fuels even the programmer who makes your avatar’s sword the power to destroy the great dragon boss.

It all begins with the story, no matter in what form it is written. The 160,000 expected visitors to the con would have nothing to do if someone hadn’t first conceived of the stories, which they have come to honor.

Fandom keeps those stories alive. The Cosplayers continue the stories of their characters. It’s marvelous, and wonderful. Every story lives for four special days.

I am a storyteller, and at San Diego Comic Con International, I stand among my brethren.

Kevin Paul Shaw Broden

Four Names of Professional Creativity

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