I did my first SFF convention in 20 years last year. It was NEO ComicCon in Cleveland. Spent a morning there as a guest of the organizer, Shawn Belles. Shawn and I go way back. We ran cross country back in high school, back when Eisenhower was president, the grape Nehi flowed like water, and Cindy Lou McGarvey let me peck her on the cheek after a sock hop. (Scandalous!) Now we’re middle-aged nerds. Only he gets to put on a comic book convention.
This year, I will have a booth in which to sell books. With moves and renovation, this will not be an impressive effort. I won’t have many books to sell because I can’t really afford to tap anymore forbidden cash. I have a fixer upper to fix up, which has already cost me a water heater, a fridge, and 10 glass block windows I have to install myself. So… Light on books.
Heavy on bookmarks.
I have three ebooks available now, The Magic Root, The Marilynists, and Headspace. The bookmarks have easily readable web links and QR codes on them. You can take your mobile device, go to the order page for each book, and order whatever format you want. So I need to get bookmarks printed.
I also need to get a PayPal reader for my phone. Who carries cash anymore? Not many people. PayPal handles the sales tax and lets you take credit cards. Plug it into your iPhone, and you’re off to the races.
Might be nice if I get some standup signs made for my books. It does you no good to sit and look forlorn, going “Please buy my books!” I generally don’t like book signings, but then I can’t complain. I haven’t had one in almost twelve years.
It’s a tentative first step. I sell better when I can press the flesh and talk up the story. Just tweeting and throwing out links on discussion threads don’t cut it. In fact, nothing right now is selling. I need to do more.