Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Romance Writer's Conference, Here I Come

Only two more days!

Before I know it, I'll be heading over to Bellevue Washington for the Emerald City Writer's Conference. In my last post, I spoke of putting together promotional materials to give away at the Book Fair and at other times. I designed and ordered posters, business cards, rack cards, and pens. At the time, only the posters had arrived. Now I have everything - and I'm very pleased!

The Posters

The Rack Cards (both sides) and the Business Cards

The Pens - all 250 of them

I've already started giving away pens and the cards. Last night, for instance, I was at a board meeting of the Seattle Classical Guitar Society, where I'm the secretary. I brought a handful of pens and Rack Cards. I set them out before the meeting at everyone's seat. The Treasurer came in a few minutes late and missed my (rather excited) explanation.

She sat down at the table. She gave a long look at my "Inn on the Edge" Rack Card. Looking baffled, she shuffled through her treasurer's papers, fished something out of her purse, exchanged pleasantries with the President of the Board. She picked up the pen and read the inscription. Then she read most if not all of the book blurb on the Rack Card, trying to appear to be paying attention to the meeting.

"What is all this?" she whispered in my direction.

"It's me! I'm Gail Bridges! I have a pen name. I wrote these books..."

"Oh!" Her eyes grew large. I noticed for the first time how very gray they were.

"I write erotica," I said under my breath, "so they may not be to your taste - but I thought I'd share these things with all of you because I'm so dang excited! I have a new book coming out!"

"Cool." She tucked the pen into her purse. "Thanks."

So there you have it: I'm doing my part. Even if most people won't be interested in my work, I'm committed to networking, to promoting, to marketing my books. At least a little. They say word-of-mouth is best, right? And, who knows? If I continue to share my excitement with friends and acquaintances, to give out cards and pens and cards, I may find a reader sometime, somewhere. Giving out my swag last night may not have resulted in a sale, but it was fun. It's good practice to talk about my work, to answer questions, and to find ways around the - gasp! - erotica thing.

Come Visit me! I'd love to see you.

I hope to take notes and impressions of the upcoming conference. Maybe even a photo or two. I'd like to share my experiences in a future blog post. Until then, adios amigos!

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