Monday, October 11, 2010

The latest visit to Archon!

(photo is of a new reader-friend, Martin Austin, with myself on the right, at Archon 2010)

I am about a week behind in my report on Archon, as I came right back from it and did the last two shoots for Swordbearer, and had to get a full set report up with pics on the final shoots.

The trip to St. Louis went very well, and I had another good Archon experience. Archon was held at a new convention site in the city, so it had a new layout and arrangement. The dealers room and registration was in one building, with most of the programming in another building that was a short walk away. It made for a little adventure upon arrival, as I first went to the programming office (as I was slated for 5 panels, a reading, and a signing), and had to do a little walking around to get my badge and such.

Literary Underworld was on hand in the dealers room, and were carrying The Exodus Gate, The Storm Guardians, and Crown of Vengeance, so I did not have to worry about running a dealer/exhibition table for the weekend. I did spend several hours there during the weekend so I could be on hand for Becky, who was the primary person running the table. Other "Underlords" as Elizabeth calls the authors that she stocks for The Literary Underworld, included Angelia Sparrow, Sara Harvey, Jimmy Gillentine, and Jon Klement. I finally got to met Angelia's mom, which was a very cool surprise!

Speaking of Jon, he was really awesome in that he picked me up at my hotel and was my guide on day one for getting to the convention site. Really helped, as my travel to and from the site was smooth on the following days.

Panels went very well. Elizabeth Donald and I were almost late to the Urban Fantasy panel, but we made it in the nick of time (Elizabeth had to get from the dealers room to the building with the panels and I was having my adventure getting my credentials). A promotion/marketing panel, focusing on low-budget promotion and marketing for authors and others, followed, which included Joy Ward, myself, and filmmaker Jack Snyder. This was a fun panel, where I found out about the mutual love of basset hounds that I share with author Barbara Hodges, who turned out to be one of my main new friends that weekend.

Later, I was on a "Not New York" panel, which focused on small press publishers. This was the second panel I have been on with Selina Rosen (chief editor of Yard Dog Press), who is one of the most out-going, informative, and fun panelists you can encounter. She doesn't hold back! Van Plexico was my other co-panelist, and this one turned out to be a lot of fun.

They day was rounded out with a signing hour on the lower level, where I was with Sandy Lender, Angie Fox, and Murv Sellars. Sandy and I met at ConText in 2009, and she is part of an exciting new publishing venture. Angie is one of the authors at the Something Wicked blog, where my friend Shirley Damsgaard does her blogging. Angie and I talked about new projects and some of the things in the state of the publishing industry. It is definitely a new frontier now, with the eBook element!

On Saturday, Elizabeth hosted a Literary Underworld panel, which included Angelia Sparrow, Jimmy Gillentine, Sara Harvey, Jon Klement, and Elizabeth, who was brandishing a riding crop, I suppose for keeping us in line! We talked about author's groups, such as The Literary Underworld and Imagicopter, both of which I participate in. I was able to give out copies of the new issue of Imagyro, the Imagicopter magazine, which has yours truly on the cover. If you haven't seen it yet, here it is!

I was also on a Book vs. Movie panel that Saturday with Jack Snyder, a successful independent producer, whose movie Ghost Image has met with outstanding success in both domestic and foreign markets. Jack is a great panelist, very knowledgeable and fun to listen to, and I found myself taking a few notes as he talked about his experiences.

Had a reading towards the end of the day, and ended up doing a section of "In the Mountain Skies", the new short story in the Dreams of Steam steampunk anthology from Kerlak Publishing (Kimberly Richardson, editor).

I did get to meet and talk with some new readers in the dealers room, and hang out a little with some of my author friends like Mike D'Ambrosio, a great science fiction writer out of the Philly Area. Mike is very active on the Con circuit, and also is working on the film/screenplay side of things, so we always have lots to talk about and catch up on. (Photo is of Mike D'Ambrosio talking with one of his fans in the dealer room at Archon).

I caught up with Haley Elizabeth Garwood and a new author friend, Barbara Hodges, at panels and author signings later on Saturday. The day definitely ended on a good note there, and I headed back for the night to my hotel, as I needed to get back earlier on Sunday to meet with Aaron Champion, the cinematographer on Swordbearer as we had the final two shoots coming up on that Monday and Tuesday.

Archon was definitely a good experience, and the new location is nice. My hat is off to Beth Bancroft for putting together another great programming track, which I really enjoyed participating in!

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