Convention season, the loved and dreaded time of the year where I pack up my gear and head out on the circuit. The circuit for me being the local or regional conventions that seem to either 1. fit what I do or 2. worth my time and money. It’s always a crap shoot with these things. I never make my ‘table’ money back (if you do the cons enough you hear people asking if you ‘made table’, which is basically the point where you start making a profit), but bit by bit I am getting better at doing the cons. It’s a mix of having enough stuff to offer, and having an outgoing enough demeanor to make people want to talk to you.
And you have to soft sell.
We all hate when people badger us to buy something, ANYTHING, and it’s worse at conventions. You always get the over the top people at these things who reeeeeeeally want you to buy their stuff and who make you feel almost bad when you don’t. I hate that. Makes it hard to just check out what people have. With luck your talent will shine through and you can sell your work on its merits, and not by harassing people. I mean, dang, this isn’t a carnival, right?
So yeah, the convention season is here. As of May I will have The Meep Sheep ready so that’s going to be fun. It’s always a drag though when you do these things and go home feeling like you wasted an opportunity. You didn’t talk to people enough, didn’t display your stuff well. You go through a thousand things but the main thing is this – fun. If you go, if you have fun, then that’s what matters. You never want to spend money to get to the cons that hurts you if you don’t make it back but you have to get over the stress of ‘making table’. This is business, yes, but it’s also art, and you have to have fun with that end of it. You have to have fun and keep meeting people, making connections, and getting your work out there. You won’t get rich at these things but inch by inch you move forward, and that’s what it’s about.
It’s my hope that this go-round I can make progress, meet people, and get the new books out to people. I am super stoked, and as much as I can dread the cons during them, I love them to pieces when it’s that season.