FarPoint Convention Liveblog: Day 1

10:05 AM 

Hey readers. I’ve mentioned before that today marks my first convention appearance, as I’ll be sitting in the dealers room at FarPoint sci-fi convention at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Timonium, Maryland. You can see me in the dealers room link, about halfway down: clicky.

I’ll be selling all three of my books, along with digital redemption vouchers, signing autographs, and just being on-hand to chat. Online, I’ll be bringing you sights from the show and talking some about my experiences as they happen. I’m hoping it will be a lot of fun and that you’ll join me! See you again soon.

2:51 – It seems to be a long-running theme in my life that reliable Internet access is for other people. I pay for tethering on my phone in order to connect through my iPad where-ever I go, but inevitably the tethering connection is nigh useless, even with 4G, and so I’m queueing this entry up as I hope for a more solid connection.

Arrived at the hotel about an hour ago, not sure if I was in the right place – until I saw this on the car next to me:

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Yeah. That’s a good sign. So I came in, picked up the badge, found my table and used the restroom; hey, sue me, it’s a long drive from Bethesda to Timonium. After some struggle getting my books in (let’s just say their sidewalk is very uneven and my chosen box week on one side), I got set up. It looks something like this:

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I’m already tempering my expectations. There are lots of goofy toys to compete with, not to mention some really finely crafted work. I’m in the back corner, the writer’s ghetto, and appear to be the first arrival. I’m seated between two publishers and across the way from another writer, which presents some unique competition. 

As usual, I feel like a geek adrift. I don’t know what it is about pure sci-fi fans but I just never quite feel comfortable with them, though I would like to understand them. I suspect it’s a problem of language. Sure, I know what a Tardis is and I’ve heard bazinga many times in my life, but my geeky obsessions have always tended toward darker fare. I’d love to go to a show and see a discussion of something like Alien or the Dark Tower series. Still, I’m going to do my best and pay my dues. More later.

4:30 PM
Have lost some people when they realize there’s a supernatural element to my work. Disappointing.

5:00 PM
Slow day so far. Taking the time to work on City of the Dead.

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5:05 PM

Broke the ice. First sale.

6:29 PM

This evening has been slow, but I got some tips from a lady who’s been doing this for 11 years. That’s some real value. The day has been a microcosm of my career to this point, going from optimistic to pessimistic to somewhat confident. Favorite moment so far? A woman shook my hand and said she admired folks like me who put ourselves out there artistically. Very cool. If nothing else, this will be a growth experience. The signing session tonight still has potential.

7:12 PM
Just spotted Felicia Day on her way to the opening ceremony. One of those weird celebrity moments where you think, ‘oh hey they really look like… Ohhhh yeah.’ Much shorter than I expected.

9:05 PM
Back from dinner and boy did I need it. Signing in about an hour, so I’m going to write for awhile. Latest shot of the table.
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Also, me.

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3 Comments

  1. We’ve all heard stories of authors (even bestsellers) sitting all alone at tables while people walk wide circles around them. My best advice – go to the parties. Make friends. At worst, you’ll have fun. Who knows what will happen tomorrow.

    • Yeah, the parties are the way to go. They can be somewhat of a networking nightmare, but at least you get to drink (or at least I would 🙂 Hope the evening went well. Oh wait, just saw you have Day 2 posted. I’ll have to go check there. Sheesh. How far behind am I?

  2. I have never done a live appearance and I’m not sure I’m ready. I’ve seen you at lots of these and you seem happy and calm–and meeting cool people. I’m in the process of setting a few up and may call on you for tips.
    Thanks for the insights–
    Pen
    (My son thought you were the coolest after I showed him the pic with you and the actor from Breaking Bad)

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