Maple Comics just wrapped up our most successful event yet at Comics Art Fest KL 2016.
I must say I am extremely impressed with the spirit and dedication of the volunteers/workers who put together such an amazing event.
It started on a low note on Saturday morning when I was told politely that I couldn't bring coffee into the venue. So I drank the hot americano outside, thinking murderous thoughts and plotting revenge via strongly-worded letters.
Then as we navigated Maple Comics' busiest convention day so far this year, I began to appreciate the efficiency and passion of the crew.
Let me tell you a story how great this team was.
On Sunday, there was going to be a panel session with Stephani Soejono talking about her new comic with us - The Tale of Bidadari.
We of course did no preparation for the panel. It was just going to be me and Steph on two chairs with Steph answering questions I would throw at her. We were going to just wing it.
The crew had more preparation and thought than us. They approached and asked us twice - via two different groups of people - hours before we were going to go up. One of them told us exactly what to expect. EXACT information.
You have no fucking idea how much I appreciate information, especially accurate and complete ones. In a world of liars and people afraid of the truth, in a world where idiots hide information ebcause they think they have some form of advantage by keeping people in the dark, these young men and women gave me COMPLETE INFORMATION!
Information is key. Information is power. In the right little fingers, information can make or break things.
And it needn't be noise. I was told that there would be two chairs and one table in between to set up any sort of display. That was all I needed to know. Simple, yes? You would be surprised how much of these seemingly useless information tidbits are hidden by people in the same companies for no fucking reason, to the detriment of the whole.
I was then asked by one of the crew members, would we like to project anything on the big screen overhead?
I said, sure, the cover of the book of course. I was ready to email her the cover but this young woman whom have now earned all my respect, asked if she could take it from Maple Comics' Facebook page.
I said sure, half-expecting the image would be of the wrong cover, or from the wrong FB page, and I'd have a silly story I could share with my publisher friends.
So the hour came. I disengaged from a booth that was showing me a gag variant cover of a woman with cookies covering her boobs and went on stage.
There it was. Two chairs, with a small table or dais/pillar thing in between. Exactly as promised.
And above Steph and myself, was the screen. On it, was the CORRECT cover, like a fucking Thundercats logo. Everything was perfect and seamless.
So much so, that I then felt our unrehearsed chat was a bit... inadequate of how hard these people worked.
Maybe Steph and I should have practiced the proposed Riverdance routine as part of the launch gimmick.
We wrapped up fairly quickly because I remembered Amir Fixi Muhammad's advice - if you think you're going to suck, make it short so it would be easier for people to forgive you.
During the panel, I had the chance to thank CAFKL because it was during their 2015 event that I met Steph and Veleries and convinced them to do comics with us. In essence, The Tale of Bidadari and Veleries' upcoming work was made possible because CAFKL gave us a platform to meet and collaborate.
There are other little stories. The immense help the crew gave us with our queries and needs before and during the event are too numerous to tell. Big things and little things. Coming up with great and well thought of rules and the maturity to know when to bend or break them.
I believe that the country and even the world are in good hands if these people are organising it.
Was it perfect? No. But it far exceeded my personal expectations, which are admittedly low after Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice and X-Men: Apocalypse.
To the crew members of CAFKL, I salute you. And thank you.
To the visitors who bought or browsed our titles at Maple Comics' booth, I give you my sincere thanks. We do this primarily for you.
To our neighbours, we apologise for spilling over unfairly to your areas.
To our fellow booth people, it is with pride that we participate in this community and we hope to contribute making it better.
Thank you. Like, seriously.