Comic Non-Sans: Table Time

This coming weekend is Anime Mid-Atlantic, where I will be serving multiple duties, as I am wont to do.  I host the Friday night karaoke competition, and in exchange for time spent I get both free admission and a free table in Artist Alley.  Additionally at conventions, I do a lot of cosplay photoshoots, which end up being at just about any time of day depending on the schedules of my fellows.

At almost every convention I go to, my problem ends up being the same: staying at my damn table.

See, none of my collaborators is in attendance at conventions regularly anymore, nor do I have a significant other who would man the table for sexual favors out of the goodness of his heart.  I’ve got people who can sit in for me for five minutes while I grab a sandwich or a bathroom break, but it’s a rare occasion when I can divide up shifts with someone else.  Last time I managed it was at Intervention, and even then I only broke away to bring back food.

When you balance your time amongst a bunch of activities at a convention, what’s the proper way to handle table time?  This is another of those questions I’m putting out to myself and you, gentle reader.  Because when you’re operating alone, it can be difficult to figure out how to handle things.

I think a lot of my concern stems from paranoia.  It’s the same principle as when you’ve waited several hours for a phone call, and it’s in that brief space you go to take a shower that the call actually comes through.  Same thing — if you run off to get photos done or some other non-artist-ly activity, what are the odds the people with the money will come by and wonder where you are?

This time, I’m going to be testing a new seat-of-my-pants system: when I’m gone from my table, leave a safe amount of merch on my table (provided my neighbor knows the telltale signs of thievery just in case) and tell them where I am.  Let them hit me up at the photo booth or at the hotel restaurant.  Maybe even give them something small and cheap for their hike out of their way.  A thought — because not only would it be interesting to see how interested people are in my work, it would encourage me to keep tabs on my location and not wander off somewhere when I should be selling books.

No, really.  I’m prone to that sort of thing.  I’m terrible.

I’ll be testing that idea out this weekend.  It could be entertaining.  It could be a train wreck.  You’ll find out.

Posted on June 14, 2011 at 01:00 by Kara Dennison · Permalink
In: Columns, The Written Word, Webcomics, Webcomics