Dear Monica was hyping Austin's indie comic show STAPLE! for the past several years. Her rec plus my free crash pad @ Scott's, plus the enjoyable company of them both was the inducement to go. Not to mention Austin itself—I love it there and hadn't been for 2 years.
The con itself was about half the size of SPX and had a very regional feel to it. Aside from Monica, I didn't recognize any exhibitors from SPX, MOCCA, or APE (though that may be unfair, I stopped going to APE several years ago).
Sales were low...Austin may be more of a hipster scene than a gay one...but I did have a few nice conversations with some fans of mine, who were surprised to see me in attendance.
One fan also creates comics, and I love her style. I suggested we do a sketchbook swap: I'd draw something in hers if she drew a hot guy in mine. She has started a "Sub-Mariner and Aquaman" sketch book for other people to draw in, so I happily complied.
Here is the result.
I'd never drawn Sub-Mariner before, but, um, he's kinda fun to draw! Just a built guy wearing some Aussiebums. Nice.