Wednesday, February 11, 2009

The smaller the better

Like Maggie, I don't go to many Mega Conferences and probably won't in the future unless they're within driving distance. The cost/benefit ratio just isn't right for me. I usually end up spending about $2K on a biggie (RT or RWA) and I don't get anything back from it. RWA assumes anyone with a small press is aiming for something larger (and I'm not) and RT ... well, RT is in a class by itself (and I'll let you determine what class that is {wink}).

No, I'm sticking with the small guys where I can connect with readers and writers like me. For the cost of one RWA National I can go to three smaller conferences, sometimes more. What I like about it (besides the convenience and the cost) is talking with other authors who are in the same boat as me. Like me, they're trying to figure out the Promo Bullet and how to cope with Real Jobs and deadlines (something you don't hear a lot about at bigger conferences). We dish about smaller publishers and commiserate with each other about limited budgets, fickle readers, and plot problems. I feel like I'm among like-minded people, something I never felt at RWA or RT.

And it's a blast to talk to readers, one-on-one, people who have read my books and are anxious to find out about the next one, or people who are thrilled to meet a published author and are curious about ebooks and that technology (discussions about ebooks occupied a piece of every workshop I sat in on or participated in at my last conference).

So I've found my niche, at least for now. I've got one, maybe two, more conferences this year (I'm considering Killer Nashville, but if I go to that it means I'm flying at least once a month for every month this year -- a bit much, even for me). I'm looking forward to the next one in June, but I'm also looking forward to staying home and writing ... a pleasant thought for the last of this cold winter season.

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