Jillian here. I was at the Romantic Times convention in New Orleans (didn’t get to meet Marie- alas)- and had a great time for the most part. It was awesome to see old friends and to meet some I hadn’t known before in person. I also was able to connect to some readers who I have been chatting with on social media. That part was awesome to the max.
The bad thing was the way the organization split the writers in the book signing and the way they ushered readers to the NY published authors. We all paid the same fees to be there and we were treated horribly. They had the NY pubbed people on the left and the small/medium presses and indies to the right. I am small and medium press published and two of my publishers sponsored events at this convention and yet we were shuffled off to the side. We didn’t even have any customers for the first 45 mins of the book fair.
As the volunteers let people in, they ushered them to the NY side and even told some people not to go into the other room as it was the “overflow” room- I even heard one person was telling people that the published writers were to the left and the aspiring authors were to the right. HELLO??? It was unreal. I had one lady who had already bought my book and brought it from home to get me to sign it and she finally found me- she was upset as she didn’t know if she ever would. And I heard from someone else that they never did find me. So, how many sales did we in the other room lose out on? I won’t be going back unless this changes.
RWA already treats us non-NY pubbed writers as persona non grata and now RT does as well? Makes you think, doesn’t it? Makes me sad/mad at the same time. One NY pubbed gal I know said she didn’t see a problem with the way they did the split. I told her that was exactly like the days of “separate but equal”- the white folks didn’t see anything wrong with it because they were the elite. Harsh? Maybe, but I think the analogy works.
I had a dream last night that Lavada was in_ I think I was fretting over being late to blog (haha)_ anyway, she was trying to help me sew (which I CANNOT do at all) and when I got frustrated, I said, “I can’t do this like everyone else so I quit.”
I think that was a psychological leftover from being treated as a second class citizen at RT. What do you think?