DragonCon Trip Report, Part 1

I dunno how many of these parts I’ll actually get done, but hell, it’s still better than I’ve done posting here in months, so let’s accept the baby steps, okay?

We got down to Atlanta about 6PM on Thursday, since I’d told the wife that I wanted to be rolling out of Charlotte around 10 or 11AM.

Yep, I know it only takes 4 hours to get from Charlotte to Atlanta.

Nope, we didn’t get rolling by 11AM.

No, it didn’t matter in the end.

Because loading into the AmericasMart was a clusterfuck! Of colossal proportions. I dunno what type of trade shows that place typically hosts, but it was not in any way prepared for the number of vendors that were trying to get into the doors for DragonCon. We parked on the street, offloaded onto the sidewalk, and walked our stuff in once they told us that the wait for a spot at the loading dock was 5 hours.

At 6PM.

You do the math. Once we got to the booth, everything went fairly smoothly. Our location was good, except for the huge column blocking a couple of feet of our booth from the aisle, but it was still a good location. And I sold an amazing number of books (although not as many as David B. Coe) over the weekend.

I also did a bunch of panels, including a Men of Urban Fantasy panel with David, Kevin J. Anderson, Jim Butcher, Jonathan Maberry, James Tuck and S.M.Stirling. That one was awesome, and  I was seated between Maberry and Butcher, so I got to thank Jim Butcher for all his influence and inspiration. Later on I fanboyed out and gave him a copy of the Black Knight Omnibus. Probably unprofessional, but fuggit. I also got a chance to sit on a Pulp panel with Tuck, Bobby Nash, John Ringo, Van Allen Plexico and D. Alan Lewis.

Those experiences solidified for me that being on panels at cons is pretty damn instrumental in selling books. David and I both had people coming into the booth all weekend saying that they saw us on that panel and wanted to pick up our books because of it. It makes me even more convinced that just attending cons and sitting behind a table is kinda pointless, it’s getting in front of people that makes them want to read your work. And that’s what we’re all working towards- getting people to read our work!

Next up for me – Atomacon, a first-year convention in Charleston, SC. This one isn’t until November, so hopefully I’ll have enough time to get some work done on a few other projects, including a new Bubba story and finishing up this dragon story I’ve been cooking on.

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