There’s been some controversy about the booksigning, so it deserves a post to itself.
This turned out to be the biggest booksigning ever, anywhere, Guinness Book of Records-worthy. So there were problems. But there were also successes.
The handling of the big authors was better than previous years. People wanting to see their favourite big name were given wristbands for signing, so they knew to turn up at the right time. That kept lines to a reasonable size and meant the readers could walk around and see the other authors.
Indie authors are complaining that they didn’t get the same breaks as the traditionally published authors. Apparently indie books, i.e., books that are on consignment, have to be stickered, while the traditionally published were handled by Barnes and Noble. So the traditionally published were in one room and indie authors, some of them huge names, were in the other ballroom.
I signed in the trad room. However, I would have appreciated the chance to sign my indie books too, specially my new releases from Loose-Id. However, the twain didn’t seem to meet. However, I had postcards for my releases, and some spiffy new cards for my new Samhain book, out the week of the signing, and the upcoming Kensington release which is coming out in August.
Other writers, especially the indies, weren’t as happy. Their section wasn’t as well attended, and few authors sold out of their books. Since the ballrooms were only separated by a hallway, and the volunteers were directing the readers to both places, it seems to be signing fatigue by the readers. Many of them said to me that it was too much, that they were rushing around and only managing to see their favorites. The announcer in the main room frequently directed people to the other room, so the readers knew it was there. A longer signing? But the big names, the likes of EL James and Lee Child, wouldn’t want to stay there all day. A lottery to draw names out of a hat? Then some favourite authors might not get spots. I don’t know.
There was one glitch when a volunteer called the indie room the room for “aspiring” authors, but that was quickly corrected and not repeated.
When RT had two booksignings, that seemed to work better, but the earlier, indie booksignings of previous years were often only attended by the readers at the convention. When there are so many more published authors than ever before, the problem is how to fit them all in, or even how to choose the authors who are given places?
The other complaint was about the lines to pay. Ninety minutes standing in line. Wow.