This might seem like an odd moment to direct your attention to next year - but there's a good reason for it. Two, actually.
If you're kind of new to SDCC but going this year:
- Note the different hotels so they're not just names on a list, but you know where they are and the restaurants and advantages they contain.
- Make friends. Look for people in your fandoms but also look for people from your hometown. (Your comic shops, cosplay and fan organizations and local Con will know people as well.) Assemble your SDCC tribe for future badge sales and teamwork.
- Chat up other attendees and find out what they're excited about. Expand your awareness of Con possibilities and file them away for next year.
- Figure out what doesn't work for you so you remember to avoid it next year. Maybe you don't need to go all 4 days or maybe you're not suited for major commitment lines. This is good - it frees you up for fresh terrain next year.
If you're brand new and interested in going to Comic-Con next year:
These are the days when complete outsiders watch all the SDCC coverage and decide that they're going next year, goddammit! If this is you, I'm not kidding when I tell you to start preparing now. Open Registration (where you'll try to buy a badge for next summer) could be this fall.
You'll want to:
- Create a Member ID. You'll need a separate ID for anyone who's going with you. Only people with Member IDs can participate in the badge sales.
- Get active in the online SDCC community. Study up on all the advice (there's a lot) and talk to veterans who can steer you into actual attendance. Build relationships. Connections make the SDCC world go round.
- Accept that you may not go to the full 2020 show - and may not go at all. People do get shut out. But if you get even a partial badge, definitely go. You'll find plenty of offsite action on the days you don't have a badge.
- Investigate a more local Con. Some people think SDCC is the cat's pajamas and that's fine, but it's not the only Con in the world. If you've never been to one, start with a local Con in your neck of the woods.
Good luck! We'll be staring Returning Registration's spinning blue circle in the face before we know it. As Virgil said, time flies, never to be regained - which is why SDCC badges go to those of us who watch the calendar.