Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Queen City Indie Con 2014

This past weekend, I attended my first ever convention as an author. I've come away feeling a little invigorated and a little overwhelmed.  Why you ask?  I'll get to that.

Queen City Indie Con has come and gone.  I learned a lot, met a lot of great fans, sold some books and signed, signed, signed!  But that was the point, right?

Day 1 - October 24, 2014

The event was held in Memorial Hall in the "Over the Rhine" area of Cincinnati.  The historic hall is beautifully maintained and was the perfect setting for great discussions on how to be better at the craft of storytelling.

I was excited and nervous as I sat there and watched all the other indie authors and some readers fill the hall and sit down.  It was awesome to think I was among other writers! Other people who were working equally as hard as me to get their books out and to make a name for themselves.  I tried to remain calm and composed, but it was hard.

Abbi Glines

The main speaker to open the convention was Abbi Glines (http://www.abbiglines.com).  I loved her!  She opened her talk with a short video that featured a few friends of hers, such as Jennifer Armentrout, EL James, Gena Showalter and a few more, who discussed how they got into the crazy world of writing.

Abbi shared about the challenges of starting as a stay at home mom to eventually making it to published author.  I loved hearing about her journey.

Then it was all about the panels, and what great panels they were.
Jayne Rylon, MR Polish, Josh Owens and Tonya Kappes

Sara Celi, LP Dover, Wendy Owens, Samantha Young and Georgia Cates

Chanda Hahn, AnnaLisa Grant, Josh Owens, Jayne Rylon and Robyn Peterman

Michele G. Miller, Amy Bartol, Denise Grover Swank and Tonya Kappes

MR Polish, Aleatha Romig,  Amy Evans, Abbi Glines and Tara Sizec

The closing speaker was Samantha Young.  When I spoke with her later, she explained how nervous she was, but you couldn't tell it.  She inspired me with the story of her journey and how after self publishing 10 books she finally got her first traditional publishing contract with Penquin.   She took us down the differences of being a self published author to the traditional signed one.

Day 2 - Let the fun begin!

Abbi Glines
The VIP signing was scheduled at 1:30.  So before the doors opened, Sara Shirley and I went to get a few pics with the authors that were there. We became fangirls over some really great writers.


Sara Shirley, Amy Bartol and me

 I absolutely loved Amy Bartol! She was so gracious to me and Sara Shirley. After we asked for a picture with her, she wanted to see our tables and get signed swag from us! She took the time to encourage us as writers and even celebrated my first signing as an author.

Amy was the bomb! I will forever be a fan of her.
Sara Shirley, Samantha Young and myself.

Chandra Hahn

Me, Tara Sizec, Georgia Cates and Sara Shirley

The doors opened at 1:30 for VIPs and the main part of the signing was from 2:00 to 5:30.

My assistant, Tonia Keigley and I, ready for the fun

I'm ready to sign!

Later in the evening, the awards ceremony was held.  Tiaras were handed out to the lucky winners!

All in all, I had an awesome time!  Nothing like rubbing shoulders with other new writers and learning from the seasoned ones.  At the beginning of this post, I stated I came away feeling a little invigorated and a little overwhelmed.   The invigorated part I just explained, but the overwhelming part was just realizing the commitment and hard work it takes to make it in this field.  You have to be consistent and focused.  But in the end, it does pay off.  You need to learn your craft, build your readership and then in turn, help those that are just starting off.

I can't wait for next year!!