Overall, this with an amazingly fun learning experience. I had a great time with some great people, and got to see some other folks I like, as well as meeting new folks and seeing a ton of really great cosplay. I’ve got some new ideas for how to set up a booth/table, and look forward to putting that stuff together for implementation at other events.
Thursday (4-8): Connie J. Jasperson and I carpooled from Olympia and arrived when we said we would, then spent a mad half-hour searching for our table-buddy, Jake Elliot. We connected with our other table buddy, Angela Korra’ti (AKA Angela Highland. Made a few fixes to Jake’s handiwork at setting the table up, then proceeded. We actually sold a few books, which we didn’t expect to do on Thursday, including all of us managing to pile one of our own books into the arms of a lovely woman who was delighted to buy signed books of the Fantasy variety.
Friday (10-7): Connie and I drove up again, this time securing a hotel room for the
rest of the con. We four sold some more books, saw some more people, and laughed even more than the day before. I was able to take a moment here and there to chat with Jeffrey Cook, my new ConBuddy, who was there with his publisher (instead of NIWA), Free Valley Press. Over the next few months, you’ll hear a lot about Jeff, because we’ll be doing every single con together, except Gen Con, where I’ll be flying solo.
Saturday (10-6): I slept like crap Friday night. For no apparent reason. In total, I
think I grabbed about 4 hours, maybe less. We rearranged the table a tiny bit to make more room for freebie bookmarks, because we not only found the NIWA ones tucked into a box, we also had Madison Keller and Luna Lindsey stop by to take shifts at the table, and they both had bookmarks, too. At some point, I decided that what I really needed was a hat, and proceeded to get myself a genuine bowler hat. Armed with a bookmark from The Greatest Sin, I searched until I found a feather close enough to Chavali’s to suit me.
For lunch, I had a leftover sandwich half from the night before, and it hit me like a ton of bricks. After an hour of gradually fading, I realized I had food poisoning, which is usually not a huge deal for me, as I have a cast-iron stomach. Three hours of misery and things I was taught not to discuss in polite company later, I felt fine. Before this, a gentleman named Gene stopped by and I talked him into a copy of Dragons In Pieces. I found him particularly notable because he came back later and snapped up the rest of the trilogy. Thanks, Gene!
I ran across K.M. Alexander, who I vaguely know from Twitter (he recognized me, because of my clever shirt). He does Cthulhu-inspired horror, and is a generally awesome person. Also ran across John Lovitt, a screenwriter who I consider a ConFriend, at the very least.
After the Dealer’s Room closed, we NIWA folks had dinner together, along with Kennedy J. Quinn. All of us sat down and half-collapsed for an hour or so with some decent food before heading off for sleep. Of which everyone managed to get a goodly amount.
Sunday (10-4): The morning began with a steamy episode of After Hours in the Dealer Room, which would probably make a pretty good short story. We joked with our neighbors, witness a rage-filled shouting match, and angsted over our last chance to put our books into the hands of unsuspecting sucke- Er, I mean, new readers. With five of us manning the booth, we all had time to wander the Con, pick up a few last minute things, and probably have way too much fun.
For a group of people with zero prior con vendor experience among us, we did really well. I lament the fact that we didn’t think to get a picture of the four of us together, but rest assured that I will, in fact, see them all again this summer. I leave you with the two best things I saw all weekend.