That is the question I used to ask myself and I used to say, I'm not going. What would I have to gain by going anyway? Besides, I could keep that money in my pocket.
Well, let me tell you. Going to conferences should be on your list of things to do. Why? Well I'm glad you asked. What, you didn't ask? Well, I'm going to tell you anyway.
Conferences not only prepare you for what you will deal with when trying to promote yourself and they also make for great networking opportunities. Yes, you need to be able to tell someone about your book in less than 15 minutes and at a conference you are asked that question hundreds of times. Great practice.
Austin Camacho plans his schedule a year in advance. He then checks the schedule of the conference he wants to attend and the panels he wants to see. It also gives him a way to get his personal copy of the novel signed by the author. "I used to go to learn about the business and to improve my writing. Now I go for the networking and the charge I get from being around great writers."
See that is what I'm talking about! He has a plan and he sticks to it. Now quiz time. How many of you have a plan to attend conferences? (hearing the birds and crickets) Well, do you see my hand waving around in the air like a flag? I plan on going to as many conferences as my purse can handle. Like, the C3 conference in Baltimore in September 2013 and Love is Murder in February and Thrillerfest in July.
So I already have three on my schedule and now I need one or two more. Hmm, should I go to Romfest in June or maybe it will be Bouchercon in October. These are just a few that I can choose from.
Which one will I see you at? Drop me a line and let me know so that I can meet up with you. I'd love to see you.