This year San Diego's Comic-Con International convention, the largest annual event devoted to comics and popular arts, will be held the weekend of July 19--22. Like BEA, CCI attracts professionals (more than 6,000 artists, editors and rights folks), but unlike BEA, it attracts hordes of consumers, more than 40,000 last year. It is one of the comics business's most important marketplaces.

The fair's central attraction is its 300,000-square-foot exhibit hall. Every major graphic novel publisher and vendor will be represented on the floor.

CCI also provides a venue for the annual Comic Arts Conference, a gathering for the scholarly discussion of comics, and for Comic Book Expo and Pro/Con, which target professional interests. More information about Comic-Con International can be found at