Comics A.M. | In larger venue, Dallas Comic Con draws big crowd

Conventions | Preliminary estimates place attendance at Dallas Comic Con at 45,000, easily a record for the event, which not only moved this year to the Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center from the smaller Irving Convention Center but is also under new ownership. [The Dallas Morning News]

Conventions | Joe Rodriguez does some shoe-leather reporting at the Big Wow ComicFest in San Jose, talking to creators and attendees about cosplay, digital comics and the perils of self-publishing. [San Jose Mercury News]

Business | Kadokawa Corporation, the Japanese publishing, film and video game company, has announced it will merge in October with online video distributor Dwango to form Kadokawa Dwango. Kadokawa, whose manga titles include Legal Drug, Neon Genesis Evangelion and Sgt. Frog, just last month purchased video game developer From Software. [Variety]

Retailing | When is a comic shop not a comic shop any more? Consider the case of Omni Comics and Cards in Wethersfield, Connecticut: Co-owner Scott Wool says comics sales are "Negligible. Two percent or so. Ridiculous." The store makes about 70 percent of its revenue on sports memorabilia and has a strong online sales component as well; there's an interesting digression in the article about the move to collect state sales taxes on eBay sales. [The Hartford Courant]

Comics | Alan Kissler concludes his two-part overview of the history of LGBT characters in mainstream comics. [The Mary Sue]

Creators | Michael Cavna interviews Raina Telgemeier about her bestselling graphic novels Smile and Drama, how she connects with her readers, and how she approaches writing graphic memoirs: "I'm always writing my life in my head as it’s happening. That means paying attention, and focusing on the distinctive moments — especially visual details — that might be useful later. I also spend a lot of time listening to people talk, and much like a mimic, I love being able to capture a particular voice in written dialogue. I can spy a tin ear on a writer from a mile away, but that makes me appreciate good dialogue writing even more." [Comic Riffs]

Creators | Writer Robbie Morrison and artist Charlie Adlard do a little show-and-tell with their graphic novel White Death, which was first published in 1998 and is being reissued later this year to mark the 100th anniversary of World War II: They use the art and excerpts from the script to explain how it all came together. [BBC News]

Creators | The University of Pennsylvania alumni magazine profiles alumnus Vivek Tiwary, who started doing research on Beatles manager Brian Epstein, the subject of his graphic biography The Fifth Beatle, while he was still a student there. [The Pennsylvania Gazette]

Creators | Danny Boyd's fantasy graphic novel Carbon is set in the coal fields of West Virginia, so it's appropriate that he is releasing it locally first, via a comics shop and a bookstore, before publisher Caliber Comics distributes it nationally. His story is about an evil mine owner who accidentally unleashes a band of cursed immortals on the world. "I wanted to have the opportunity to share this story with my fellow West Virginians first, because while Carbon is a fantasy story with many mythical elements, it intertwines with real issues and concerns that we are all too familiar with," he said. [The Charleston Gazette]

Creators | Students from two comics programs at the California College of the Arts showed off their work in the third annual Student Comics Fair at Escapist Comics in Berkeley. [The Daily Californian]

Manga | After moderating a panel on the future of the manga business at Toronto Comic Arts Festival, Deb Aoki turns to the fans to ask what would make manga more appealing to them — and she suggests 24 titles for new readers. [MangaComicsManga]

Cosplay | The 150 Spandex-clad folks who assembled May 12 in London's Leicester Square didn't set a new world record for the number of X-Men cosplayers in one place (it stands at 250), but they had a good time, got to watch the stars on the red carpet at the premiere later that day and made an awesome music video. [League of Extraordinary Cosplayers]

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