How New Indie/Ebook Authors Can Make The Most of the RT Booklovers Convention

The 2014 RT Convention logo

Are you an indie or ebook author getting ready to join us for the RT Convention in NOLA? Wondering how to stand out? Curious when we're going to stop asking rhetorical questions? Today Mari Carr is here to give you some pointers on how to make the most of your convention! Take it away, Mari!

The RT Convention is a whirlwind five days where the hours pass in a blur. Believe me, it will take you every bit of the following week to recuperate and process everything you saw and did. This May in NOLA will be my fifth time attending this fabulous event, and I have learned something valuable every single year. Now I’ll warn you—it’s a huge event and I’m not sure there are many authors who wouldn’t admit to feeling like a little fish in a big pond. There’s nothing wrong with that. Everyone has to start somewhere, so use this week to learn from others’ experiences, observe the seasoned professionals, and see how it’s done.

  • Take a few minutes—right now—to open up the RT Convention website. Make an agenda. Pick the sessions that will be the most valuable to you and your writing. For example, I plan to attend the Erotica: Pushing the Boundaries panel because the panel consists of authors and publishers I admire and whose advice I trust.
  • When selecting sessions, go for a good mix of the business, craft and specialty ones, but don’t forget to schedule in some fun sessions as well! Just because you’re a writer doesn’t mean you’re not a reader, and these wild events are a perfect opportunity for you to mix and mingle and give your brain a rest. I would highly recommend the Cover Model Karaoke. Good music, lots of prizes, hot guys singing…need I say more?
  • Also make time for the bar. Now don’t give me that look! All I’m saying is the bar is usually THE place to do some networking. Get out there and meet other authors, talk shop (let’s face it—that’s something we rarely have the opportunity to do), maybe even make some plans. Box sets, co-written series, organizing a panel for next year’s RT—these are all things I’ve done in the hotel bar.
  • Consider making your table at the book signing pretty. No, this isn’t really necessary, but you know you’re gonna want a picture of you sitting there amongst all those incredible big names authors. It’s exciting to be there—it means you did it. You wrote a book! That’s a big deal, so celebrate with a festive look. Have some goodies to give away (chocolate always draws people in), put your phone away, live in the moment and smile. Because you will meet some wonderful readers who are just as excited to be there as you are.
  • Try to get eight hours sleep a night while there. Bwahahahahaha…that’s a joke. My motto at RT is simply…there’s plenty of time to sleep when you get home. Take lots of pictures, eat beignets, drink a Hurricane, flash someone for beads (okay, you maybe shouldn't do that), laugh, learn, make new friends and memories. Soak it all in. I promise you, if done correctly, this RT convention could be one of the best times of your life. See you at the bar!

- Mari Carr

Thanks so much, Mari! To take Mari up on her pointers, head on over to over convention website. And be sure to check out her latest release, Full Position — an erotic menagé romance that takes place in New Orleans, available digitally now. We'll see ya in NOLA!