Midsouthcon Merriment, Pt. 4


This is turning into the Magna Carta. I didn't really intend that.

Sunday was pretty exhausting. We had to hustle out the door because the hotel absolutely refused to do extended checkout for anyone - have I mentioned I don't mind that we're leaving them next year? So I had six people to shove out the door or I got stuck with another ninety-dollar night.

We packed out without too much trouble. Sara, I dressed down on the last day - I wore my black harem pants again with the red salamh kameez, because the red pants ripped. So did my hip scarf, which is pretty much DOA.

We sold like gangbusters on our last day, moving the books fast. I haven't done the math yet, but I'd say we were about double what we did the year before, and on a par with our best shows of all last year. Portents are good for 2010, folks.

I picked up a new author, too - Nick Valentino, with his debut steampunk novel THOMAS RILEY. It'll be added to the Literary Underworld soon, along with Stephen Zimmer's new book, CROWN OF VENGEANCE. Bravo, boys. D.A. Adams said he resists the term "minions" - coined by Jimmy Gillentine, not me - for the LitUnd authors, as minions is the term for my helpers at the booth. I charged him with coming up with a new name, and Alex blanked. So I tossed it to Twitter, and Danielle Pollack came up with "Underlords." I think I love it. New button!

I had a problem: the dealer's room closed at 2, and I had a 3 p.m. panel. I had exactly one hour to pack up the booth. This is a two-hour project when I'm alone. But I had Jimmy, Angel, Michael and the boy to help me. We sorted and packed the books, buttons decorations, money and assorted crap that goes with the booth and fit it Jenga-style into the car, all in 45 minutes flat. That. Is. A. World. Record.

My minions rule.

Off to the final panel, which was moderated by Dan Gamber of Meadowhawk Press and was supposed to be about the future of publishing. It had me and Stephen Zimmer - oddly, I think the first time we've been on a panel together, even though we've been at the same cons since God was a little girl - and Jacob Hammer of Samhain Publishing. Which was founded by Crissy Brashear, with whom I survived my first Dragoncon back when I was promoting my first book and Crissy was still with Ellora's Cave Publishing. Six degrees of publication.

Dan did his best to keep us in line, which couldn't have been easy with the natural smartass of his panelists and I was pretty damn punch-drunk by this point. There was the usual discussion of Amazon-vs.-Macmillan, will the iPad save us all, the dinosaur-like rate of change among big publishers, the advent of the small press, the importance of being available in multiple formats, blah blah blah read the blog.

A few things I promised to post:

• The podcast markets I was trying to remember are Pseudopod for horror, Escape Pod for science fiction and PodCastle for fantasy. Those are the guys buying fiction for podcasting - at least, the ones I know about. There may be others.

• The other thing I said I'd look up and post was...


I can't remember. Someone who was in the panel, tell me? I promised...

At the end of the panel, the boy - still in Ninth-Doctor leather jacket - showed up as instructed, already in post-con depression. He hates leaving con. Especially with school waiting. I was less than sanguine about it myself, given that I was looking at a six-hour drive after all this fun.

But the drive went okay, and we brought Perkins muffins back with us. They did not self-destruct once we crossed the Mason-Dixon line, which gives me hope that someday Perkins will discover St. Louis.

And then I'll never fit into the corset again.


  1. Anonymous2:52 PM

    I didn't blank. I said "Fodder" for those of us who don't work the booth but provide books for the mill.


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