We’d like to speak to you today about an exciting new product we’ve recently learned about. It’s called a “calendar” and you can use it to keep track of all your upcoming appointments. Truly groundbreaking stuff!
If only such a revolutionary product had been available to us in the early days of this year, we might now be slightly less exhausted. Alas, it was still in prototype format which means that when we registered for a writing conference in the far-off month of November, we had nowhere to record it. We merely saved the emails for future reference and went about our lives. And so, weeks and months later when we booked our European escape we had forgotten all about the conference. As luck would have it, they did not actually overlap. But they might as well have.
We returned from our Adriatic adventure on Monday evening and headed off to Philadelphia that Friday morning. To make it even more exciting, we were still adjusting to being back in the Eastern time zone, and daylight savings time ended while we were at the conference. In Europe we’d gone back and forth through a couple of time zones, plus several of our devices were in airplane mode the whole time which meant they were still on “home” time. We rarely knew for sure what time it was, and probably still don’t. What day is it? Anyway – the clock in our Philadelphia hotel room assured us that it was 11:00 pm on January 20, which we were pretty sure was wrong no matter which dimension you looked at it from. We were so fucking confused, but we made it to the conference on time so we must have done something right somewhere along the line.
Being antisocial miscreants, we skipped out on the Friday evening author-mingling festivities and instead went to Fogo de Chao and stuffed ourselves.
The Independent Authors Conference was a great big kick in the pants in regards to marketing. The constant refrain from the presenters was basically “yeah, you boneheads, you have to market your stuff.” Which sounds obvious when you say it. Luckily, there was also a ton of practical advice for how to market, and some of it doesn’t even cost an arm and a leg. We especially enjoyed the presentations by Lee Wind of the IBPA, and Dana Kaye of Kaye Publicity.
Our hope is that next year they’ll have more sessions focused on the needs particular to fiction authors. And that the conference dates don’t fall right after another big trip.
In closing, either invest in one of these newfangled calendars everyone’s talking about, or start tattooing important information all over yourself, Memento-style so you don’t run yourself as ragged as we did.
PS – of course we had cheesesteaks!