(I know a lot of you are tired of my Miss Officer and Mr. Truffles griping - please skip this post if you’re one of those people!)
An interesting tidbit about the kickstarter:
I noticed one of the stretch goals mentioned that Squishables had “agreed to make them a prototype” of a Mr. Truffles…
I’ve debated adding to this discussion because it’s pretty transparent who I am and I think there was enough - if not bad at least grumpy - blood and awkwardness that weekend but whatever. I shared a table at the Vancouver Comic Arts festival with MOaMT and they were really inconsiderate, if not full-on rude. You’ll notice on the website for the show that they aren’t listed. That’s because the space - a 1/4 table, 2 feet - was given to one of their contributors, Kaitlin Sullivan. I was the other 1/4, along with my friend Jeremy who had the other 1/2. As was fairly clear from how things transpired and because I heard them say it themselves, Kaitlin decided to turn her space into a Miss Officer table to promote the upcoming Kickstarter rather than use it for her indie comics. This meant bringing loads of merch and two additional people to man the table - primarily Erika Zofchak, the executive producer who was for all intents and purposes the one with the table, as Kaitlin was barely there comparatively. I will restate that this was only a 1/4 table’s worth of space for 3 people, and a smaller table they stuck behind us to make buttons and stuff on.
For the first day I got squished by all their stuff into what was really more like 1/6th rather than the 1/4th I was supposed to have. I didn’t mind too much because I’m pretty much a nobody and they were this thing that got huge on tumblr so whatever, but it made the first day at a convention I’ve done for 3 years and have always had a great time at a really negative, disheartening experience. I didn’t have any new product this year, I know that no one knows who I am, and I had traveled pretty light because I knew I’d only get 1/4 table worth of space, but I wasn’t prepared to be as marginalized as I ended up. I’d have felt worse if my other tablemate hadn’t been the guy I always do these things with, because at least sitting mostly on his side was more comfortable than it would have been with a stranger.
The second day when they came to set up they had started putting tshirts on my displays, and even though they attempted to squish back down to their day 1 footprint when I complained I’d had enough. I didn’t want a repeat of the non-presence I had on day 1, so I had the organizer come by and look. She confirmed their overreach, told them to fix it, and thankfully ended up just moving them to a vacated half table anyways and my sales and interraction with people increased like 900% now that people could see me. So it ended up okay.
I don’t begrudge them their desire for promotion, and they certainly seemed legitimately enthusiastic and nice to the people who recognized them, and the kid they brought to make buttons was a sweetheart, but Zof and Kaitlin just did not think or care at all about how bringing easily a full table’s worth of stuff to a 1/4 table would inconvenience anyone else. It was inconsiderate and made me feel insignificant and terrible
So, yeah. To hear rumours that they’re being a little shitty to one of their people (assumedly antithetical to their mandate of supporting indie talent) and that their planning has been somewhat sub-par are not particularly surprising to me, because I experienced both first hand.