a.k.a. My unpopular opinion/Tis about me not you
a.k.a. I will share anyway cuz I rawk like that, a.k.a. this is so in sybilish you might want to stop reading NOW for fear of brain damage/migraine, a.k.a. gwen isn’t going to edit this into English (but will hopefully fix spelling & add links-HINT), a.k.a. I am prolly not even going to edit it (RUN), a.k.a. this shit is long and you aren’t gonna read it but I can point to it from now on when asked /end warnings
Otherwise known as the answer to…
- There were things I wanted to do for the blog that I thought the conference would help since I had decided to shift TGTBTU from a sole reader bitch board to more of a review blog.
- It was in Texas.
Easy whore be thy name sybil. ::shrug::
Now many a person has asked me if I would be in San Fran this year and I made the decision a while ago not to go. You have NO idea how happy that makes me because I wouldn’t be able to go @ this point in time (crappy shit here) and it would blow big ass chunks if I had signed up and paid. And I DO plan to go next year… so why didn’t I go this year? You don’t care you say? HA! I am gonna tells you anyway…
Last year was FAB. I had the best time and was able to do tons I wanted to for the blog. I was sharing a room with Jane of Dear Author, who I was lucky enough to have helping me with the blog at the time because we were both in something of the same place of changing a mind set of what we wanted to do with our blogs vs. what we first started with. (It is her post here that made me think “coolio I can post about this in public”.)
I asked her, at the time last year, if she would mind more roommates, selfish reasons mind you cuz I had no clue how much much this was gonna cost me and a 4-way split rocks more than a 2-way. What? Sybsisnottehlawyerbabe. Who did I want to invite – again had a thought and selfish motive behind it (almost EVERYTHING I do does – yes, the blog has changed but it is still all about me me me to a point and my interest – I suck like that).
KristieJ had (at the time) recently lost her husband, had her first vacation trip in a while cancel on her and I often heard say – one day I am going to write a book. RWA is for writers. Are they all published? NOPE. Do you HAVE to be a member to publish? Nope. But I think many a person can say RWA helped them greatly move from wanna-be-someday-writer to published STAR! So all those factors made me say a flippant comment to KristieJ one day about joining our ‘lil RWA-Blogger-Train.
I was going, Jane of Dear Author was going, and the SmartBitches, so I knew/thought/assumed (in syb’s IKNOWALLFASHION) that KristieJ wouldn’t feel left out. I had seriously hoped she would go to some of the workshops and it might push her to write that someday book. Yes people, sybs is a buzy body. I suck like that too sorry.
Once she signed onto the lurvetrain, I also stuck my nose into biz and contacted a friend I knew KristieJ would die to meet. Why? Because I could, have no issue with being told “no” (HA! I made myself giggle – really I hate being told no – it irks me but if by friends I get over it 😉 ). I forget what Wendy said/posted/emailed/blogged that made me again say a flippant ‘come to Dallas’. Her response, IIRC, “Were you serious?”
I emailed Jane “Am I serious?” and she shrugged [while no doubt thinking “goddamnit sybil stop putting so many people in the room”. I am a pushy lil duck – sort of. As Gwen sez, one must learn to tell Sybil “NO” or she will have you doing WAY more shit than you can. This is true. OCD be thy name and a lesson Gwen learned the hard way *eg* yes and I ramble but I like to think of it as ‘SIDENOTE’.] Long story short (too late) Jane was all sure, fine, whatever….
Why did I think Wendy should go? (Yes, once again there was reason behind my madness.) At the time THE WENDY was not at all apart of TGTBTU, her blog isn’t (wasn’t?) anything other than a reader blog. Of course, it is one of THE reader blogs, as in we all would not be here without Rosario, Wendy and McVane (a.k.a. THE Maili) (who I so hope touches base someday or at least fucking tells me what the fuck name she is posting under these days). And I, selfishly (yes, yes, yes I am – I admit it – I know I shouldn’t – too lazy/seenoreason/amnotstoopid, a.k.a. why hide the obvious), wanted to meet THE WENDY (oddly I had no designs to put her to work at TGTBTU @ that time, came later 😉) but I was thinking she should go cuz of her job. It would be fab for us, the romance reader, even RWA sees that as they have a day just FOR the wendy’s of the world.
And BAM! our room was born (at least in my mind who the hell knows what they were thinking).
Some point during the conference I started to think “FUCK we are presenting this wrong…” because so many reader bloggers started to make noise about coming next year (this year) and I said so to Jane… who I think/thought (might-still-I-haven’t-asked) I was being my normal vain self and was saying “le gasp we won’t be TEH SPECIAL anymore” and she was of the mindset that any and all readers should be welcome. We are paying so have just as much right to be there.
I didn’t agree. (Jane and I OFTEN disagree, her coolness with that was always the thing I luv.) I think the highest of INTERNET MEDIA. I think if you are a blog that reports on the industry, does things to promote romance or aim too, you should be there if you can be.
My thought is the RWA Conference is not a fan event. The book signing, yes – the rest, not so much. I don’t see how having ‘star gawkers’ wouldn’t be distracting for authors. And most of all, holy hell, it is expensive, so it doesn’t make sense in my head as a fan get together. And I don’t get that type of ‘fangrrlish behavior’ that would make people travel just to meet THEIR FAVORITE AUTHORS EVAH. (I am not saying any reader blogger there is there for these reasons – haven’t asked – don’t know.)
Again… I AM NOT SAYING ANY READER AT THE CONFERENCE IS A BAD PERSON. I AM NOT SAYING THEY ARE DOING THE WRONG THING. I am not even saying they will cause a problem. I have seen MANY authors be all for them being there but in my normal selfish way IF there is fall out from having reader blogger there (with no author aspirations or a blog that is geared toward reporting on the Romance Industry), I didn’t want to be guilty by association. See? All about me…
Dear Author and Smart Bitches (in my ‘lil no one agrees with me opinion) SHOULD BE THERE. In my mind they are JUST as much members of the press as any fucking one else. And THAT is why I am still so not amused RWA said they weren’t (for all I know that has changed by now, couldn’t say). But this is the first year (I think) fans have gone in such numbers, so I don’t think RWA has/had a way to qualify who would be ‘internet press’. And maybe they got stars in their eyes and saw coin. Not sure… I plan to follow up with them after the conference. Again that is NOT a dig at RWA, as I think the organization, while flawed, RAWKS SOCKS. They do a fucking fab thing for romance writers.
So what do I mean?
A perfect example is katiebabs (co-blogger with the fab KristieJ), when she first said she was going, I thought she was going as a reader fan. When the ever smart LLB saw the window to have her report for All About Romance, and I think Katiebabs works for All About Romance in a publisher contact way once she stopped reviewing for them. Again I think – could be wrong – too lazy to check… So iIMHO (just me) Katiebabs now SHOULD be there as she was ‘internet press’.
Does that make sense as to what I was thinking? If not… situation normal *g*.
But the RWA Conference in my ‘lil mind is for writers (published or would-bes) NOT a fan event. Jane’s thought was I over think shit (I do), readers belong everywhere, their money spends just as well, you are no better than anyone else sybil (which wasn’t my point) and other thoughts I forget now.
So when we got back, Jane was allllllllllllll over planning for the next one. Jane is THE awesome and so organized it is sick. I? Not so much. And you may have noticed I tend to take on too much, over think (see above), distract EASY and can’t make a decision to save my fucking life. So when she started making plans in AUG 2007 for this year… ::dies:: I was like “you are on crack.”
None of this is secret ;). But my unease grew with more and more reader bloggers deciding to go. And, le sigh, I felt guilt because I am like that and thought we might have presented it in a star gawker way. Jane did a lot of twittering and reporting. I did mostly behind the scenes stuff, setting up guest days, contests, making contacts and pimping out the Romantic Advances (le sigh, again, another post which makes me ashamed). That means you, our reader here @ TGTBTU [HA! as if anyone is still reading this ramble] didn’t see why I was there so maybe I looked like a star gawker?
I went back and forth… there were things I wanted to do for the blog and I thought again “I should go…” “omg! san fran fucking coolio…” “omg! san fran too expensive for me to invest in a hobby blog…” and then RWA made their decision that unless an Internet outlet was tied to a MAJOR print or TV media they couldn’t apply for a press pass.
I have made no secret I HATE that decision (working on coming out of my shell and saying what I think – how I doing?) not because it means “no press pass for sybils” but because the volume of traffic in that thinking doesn’t compute. Tell me I can’t go because my numbers are not good enough. Tell me you don’t think TGTBTU does anything for the Romance Industry. Even tell me you I don’t belong, so if I want to go I have to pony up cash. DO NOT tell me I don’t ‘count’ because I am just internet media.
I have, and still will, argue that Smart Bitches and Dear Author reach more readers than what stoopidlyy counts as ‘true press’. Again, I know… most, if not all, don’t agree with me. ::shrug::
So that sealed the deal for me. In my mind, RWA told me Internet doesn’t count. Might not have been their point but that is what I heard. I hate being told “no” without an intelligent reason and saying “gosh a year isn’t enough time to figure out how to understand (or attempt to figure out) how to measure traffic” smacks of greed, laziness and I thought a clear message of “readers not wanted”.
And most of all I am a bad, bad, bad, suckyass fan. I admit that… I am NOT a good fangrrl. I can love an author to pieces and still not like a book they write. Ask me my opinion – regardless if I think you want it, agree with it or if it will piss you off – ask, I tell. Hell, don’t ask and I tell. Blogger be thy name.
PART III (a.k.a. syb gets to her point – sort of)
So what do I think now, for those of you seriously bored and still here *g*.
- I still don’t think the RWA Conference (as I saw it last year) is worth the coin for readers to go.
- I have NO clue if they [the readers] will prove to be a distraction to the point of the conference for writers, and if they do, I think that is bad, bad, bad, bad for them to be there. Cuz I am greedy and I want the conference to be for writers so they can write me nifty books to read.
- I LOVE the idea of a reader blogger event with authors cuz I think that idea rocks socks. Someone should make that happen.
- I plan to try and attend one of the ‘reader’ events in 2009. Haven’t decided which one… either RAW or Lori Foster’s thing… unless something else comes up and that could be a possible too *g*
- I think if RWA wants the conference to welcome readers they should do things to include them and make it interesting for us on that level. Gwen had a nifty thought on this I think but I forget it [Gwen: it was to do what ComiCon did – have a concurrent “Alternative Media Expo” in the same hall or a meeting room where bloggers, etc., could get face time with whomever attends the conference]. Cuz tis too much money to spend to just hang at the bar and/or meet up with other bloggers. Of course, that is just my general opinion, if you have that money to blow and/or that is your want AND RWA/authors wants us there, rock on with your badself.
TGTBTU will have a few odds and ends on the conference (which, correct me if I am wrong, but that is a different word than convention – and if this was the RWA Convention I would have completely different thoughts on this). Sandy is a wanna be author, who will one day write THAT book. And I hope to hell she reports on some of the workshops she goes too. I think that is interesting from a reader stand point, but as a reader, wouldn’t want to attend unless I planned to blog about it. I think (as I have said) RWA is for her. And, like KristieJ, I HOPE it pushes her to start and finish that book that is in her. Do I know if either will be good? Nope – but I think if you wanna you should try. Wendy is going to a dinner for me and I will be reporting on all things Harlequinish that go down. Her other blogs on the conference will be at her blog (I think).
Everything else – I would point you to Dear Author, Smart Bitches and All About Romance. And most likely if you are a reader – you know that *g*.
So as an author or reader, tell me why you disagree with me, tell me what changes (if any) you would like to see at the RWA Conference, tell me what your dream convention is and what you would like have planned as events, tell me you agree with me (cuz hey I would love at least one person *g*), tell me you think the RWA Conference is useless for writers or readers, tell me whatever you wanna…