Over the last few days, a rumor squiggled through the SDCC community: that Returning Registration would be held on September 30. It appears to be untrue, but it did get many people thinking about next year - often with a certain fatigue, since it feels like we just finished the gymkhana that is San Diego Comic-Con.
But it's not too early to think about your 2018 Comic Con plans, both for SDCC and the world at large. Here's why:
- One reason: Returning Registration could be in November. If you want to put together a buying group, or do a health check on your existing one, now's the time. 2017 first-timers who've never done RR before - your chances are better in this sale than in Open Reg, so take it seriously. Don't skip it, as I have actually known people to do.
- Another reason is the grisly massacre that was the SDCC hotel sale this year. While I don't have hard stats, I've heard of more people booking backup rooms for 2018 than ever before. Most involve high and nonrefundable rates. Hotels can charge whatever they please for these non-CCI reservations, so expect this to factor into your ability to find a reasonably priced backup room. In other words, start looking now if staying downtown matters to you.
- You should also think beyond SDCC - now, before the Ret Reg madness starts. Every year people come home from San Diego and say, "I don't know if it's worth it." Or they decide to just go for a day or two the following summer. This is a common reaction but I am hearing it more than ever this year. If this is you, now is the time to think about other trips you might want to take, or other ways you might want to spend that money. It's really easy to get caught up in the desperate year-round quest that is SDCC attendance, to the point where you forget to think bigger.
- If you haven't yet, think about other Cons. I realize I always say this, but too many people wait until after SDCC Open Registration to think about this. Emerald City obviously has a special place in my heart, there's WonderCon, Gen Con, Silicon Valley, Salt Lake, New York (which requires attentive planning now), Dragon Con, etc. I can't say this enough: smaller Cons can deliver more bang for your buck than San Diego, because you spend less time in lines and have easier access to panels and events. Choose wisely and you can count on great guests and programming.
Just something to think about. I was aching to go to Boston Comic Con this weekend, because I've been homesick for New England in the summer. Destiny cruelly yanked me to New York, but I have started hunting for a Cape Cod beach house next summer for a combined Con-vacation. One of my friends is doing the same with London Comic Con and another with Comiket in Tokyo. Something similar could work for those of you who want new experiences while still getting a few Comic Con thrills.
And of course, you may come up holding a royal flush in the SDCC 2018 badge sale and decide that's enough. Either way, you'll have some kind of wondrous destination for next year - so think big and design an incredible Con plan, starting now.