After doing the Toronto Comic Con in March, I decided to see what other local con’s there were. I found more than I expected, and was surprised to find one in my own hometown of Barrie.

After fair but underwhelming book sales at the large-scale Toronto Comic Con, I was torn about investing even the relatively tiny fee for a local one. I mean, how many books could I possibly sell at such a small event? I decided to do it, then decided against it and flipped back and forth a couple times. Finally, I had to remind myself why I was doing Brute in the first place.

I have a story to tell. One I feel will move and inspire a generation. One that offers a cast of wildly entertaining, if flawed personalities and a unique, imaginative coherent universe. So, if I’m going to write it, I also need to be doing my best to tell people about it. So finally resolved, I booked my table.

Compared to the hundreds of vendors and thousands of fans in Toronto, Barrie’s proved a much more subdued affair with roughly twenty vendors lined up around the perimeter of a gym with a few more (myself included) in the middle. Really, you could see everything this con had to offer in ten minutes flat, however, people took the time to come, paid to get in, and weren’t in any hurry to leave. So they lingered and came up to each table with genuine interest in what they had. Wow! What a difference to have to act like a carnival barker to get anyone to even glance at our table in Toronto.

With an attentive audience, I was able to casually let them know what Brute was all about, get a laugh from them, and to my shock, a high number of them downloaded the free issue, purchased an issue or purchased all the issues. In a short six hours (five-and-a-half really, there was no one there for the last thirty minutes) I sold more in Barrie than on our best day in Toronto. What?! And considering the vast majority of people in Toronto bought the bundle and here it was mostly single issues, means I sold to way more people than I did in Toronto. To say I was pleasantly surprised is an understatement.

So, a fantastic result, only slightly reduced because I sold out of Brute #1 around two o’clock, meaning no more bundles could be sold. A delightful, if unfortunate, problem to have. So, as you might expect, I’ll be doing a lot of small town conventions going forward.

People young and old, male and female and of all nationalities love the concept. Its appeal is broad enough, to appeal to even very casual comic fans, or perhaps, it appeals to them even more. So now my next concern is finding a more optimal way to print them, as I can’t profit with the print costs I bore for this first run. But now that Brute is tested and true, we can order in greater amounts which will help.