Gail Delaney & Jenifier Ranieri at RT 2011
STEPH: As a publisher, what's the appeal of the RT Convention?
GAIL: The beauty of RT is the diversity of attendees. There are conventions
specifically for networking of publishers. There are conventions for writers
to improve their craft. There are conventions for distributors.
RomanticTimes is an all encompassing event for anyone involved in the
industry of romance novels. I can network with other publishers, speak to
distributors and others in support or service industries. I can meet with
potential authors, and meet authors who already write for me. I can talk to
art people (or more to the point, Jenifer can!), and we can draw in new
readers. We can accomplish a lot of goals in one place.
STEPH: How many times have you gone?
GAIL: This marked my sixth RomanticTimes convention. My first was as an author
only, my second and third as both an author and an executive editor for
another publishing house. Then I skipped a year. The last three conventions
have been as owner of Desert Breeze Publishing.
STEPH: Do you meet a lot of romance readers at RT?
GAIL: Very much so, yes. Actually, it surprises me how many pure readers we meet
at RT. I still think of it as very much an industry-oriented event, but
there are people who go purely because they absolutely love romance novels
-- print, ebook, they don't care -- and they want the chance to rub elbows
with the authors and cover models they read and see on their books.
STEPH: How beneficial are the workshops?
GAIL: Sadly, I haven't had much of a chance to get to workshops in the last couple
of years, but when we go we tend to get a nice punch out of them. This year,
Jenifer attended workshops on marketing and hooking the reader. And I was
able to attend a workshop on the genre of Steampunk, something I'm very much
interested in learning more about. I absolutely believe the workshops can be
both beneficial and fun.
STEPH: What's your favorite aspect of the RT Convention? The workshops? The
dance & dinner? Mr. Romance?
GAIL: One of my favorite things is being able to meet authors who already write
for me. This year, I was able to once again see Vijaya Schartz, who I knew
from years past and who came to talk to us at our first RT as DBP. I also
was able to meet Toni Noel and Jackie Leigh Allen -- both newer authors with
us. And although I've known Tamara McHatton for a few years, this year she
was also a DBP author. Getting together with people already with us is
Gail, Jen & Author Katie Charles
STEPH: Did you have any goals you wanted to accomplish at the convention?
GAIL: Expanding on our reputation, getting our name out there to draw quality
authors. And while time will tell, I believe we accomplished that goal.
STEPH: Did you feature any book readers in your display? What one did readers
seem to look at more? What genre appeared to generate the most interest?
GAIL: We had a Nook, a Kindle and two kinds of iPads on display for people to
'play' with. We used to have a Sony, but it went kapoot last year at RT and
hasn't recovered yet. People love to have hands on opportunities to play
with each kind of reader, and to be able to ask us about them. People were
definitely interested in the iPads. J As far as genres, we had a wide
variety of interest. I often ask people who stop "What's your favorite
genre?", and based on their answer I give suggestions based on the postcards
we have on display. A lot of Paranormal and Historical interest. Luckily, we
can offer books that offer both. J
STEPH: What does the Desert Breeze display consist of?
GAIL: This year we had two large racks displaying 24 postcard/cover art cards
each, for a total of 48 options. We also had free sample cds, goodie bags,
raffle items and mugs we gave away to readers. Also, the ereaders to play
with. We pack a lot on a small table.
STEPH: Did you have a lot of opportunities to network?
GAIL: Yes, in a variety of ways. We talk to other publishers, with authors,
publicists, all types of people. Not every mix and mingle results in an
opportunity, but every once in awhile something great happens.
STEPH: What did you enjoy the best about the convention this year?
GAIL: This year, I took my daughter for a day. She's a published author, but I
don't think it's ever really sank in for her. I loved watching her absorb it
all, and the pride in her eyes when she could tell someone she had been
published, and has another book coming out. And I enjoyed the pride I felt
when I could tell someone she was my daughtger. That was the best part of