jennifer_brozek: (Default)
GenCon, as usual, was amazing. It really was. Some 37,000 people came through the convention and I got to see a lot of them from my place in the Writer's Symposium and in the Dealer's Hall. I had a good, if stressful time of it.

Travel was interesting. On the way there, we couldn't have had a smoother time of it. On the way home, I was cursed with Mary Robinette Kowal's travel karma from hell. The way home ended up with us being up for about 33 hours with 27 hours of those hours spent in airports or in the air.

I mean, our plane was diverted to Nashville because we didn't have enough fuel. This was amusing because AirTran just got bought by Southwest and we were the first AirTran plane to land at Nashville. There were a lot of curious Southwest workers peeking into the plane.

All I can say is that I'm glad the bad travel karma happened after the convention.

I had my booth in Author's Avenue. I sold 90 of the 124 books, gave away 30 books to charity, contests and last day sales. It was a good time. I like the new set up for Author's Avenue in the middle of the Dealer's Hall. We got a lot of exposure and decent sales. I have to admit, it's nice to have a table to retreat behind with all of those people at the convention. It was extra awesome because Lily and Jeff worked the booth with me.

Writer's Symposium
All my panels were early morning panels – 8am and 9am. Which is 5am and 6am my time. But I made it and I'd like to think I was coherent. It's nice to see writers come back again and again with intelligent questions.

So, this was the big deal for me. I didn't realize just how stressful it was to be at a convention where you are up for an award. Now I know. I almost didn't go to the ceremony. But, I did because, dammit, I wanted to be there if I won. And, guess what, I did win! I won the silver ENnie for the best electronic book for Shanghai Vampocalypse, published by Savage Mojo. This is the RPG industry's equivalent of the Golden Globe awards.

I know I squeezed the heck out of Jeff's hand and he says I shrieked when Shanghai was announced. I can neither confirm or deny this. Heck, I can't even remember the applause as more than a rush of noise. This was my thought process: OMG, I won! I WON! OMG. Ok. Ok. Don't trip going up the stairs. Don't fall. Don't faint. Read your speech. Slow down, dammit! OMG. Wait for Aaron. Ok. Ok. Don't fall. There's Jeff! One stair at a time. Ok. OMG, I won!

That was it.

Here's my speech; short and simple: "I want to thank Martin Klimes and all of the people at Savage Mojo for their work on Shanghai Vampocalypse. In particular, Alan Bundock for his statting expertise and my artists, Aaron Acevedo and Jason Engle. Also, I want to thank my husband, Jeff, who, as a gamer, a geek and an engineer, is the perfect sounding board. Finally, I want to thank Ryan Macklin for making me write this acceptance speech."

I really didn't think I was going to win but I did and it was awesome.

Future Projects
You know how I said before that August always brought changes? Well, this August is crazier than normal. Because of the ENnie (coupled with last year's win of the Origins award), I immediately was offered a number of big writing tie-in projects. These are the kinds of projects I have been working towards for years. Suddenly, just when I was shifting my career to editing/publishing with a little bit of writing, I am now back to lots of writing with a little bit of editing and no publishing.

I had to have a long talk with Apex about Black Room Publications and step back and managing editor. I will not have time in the next year. At all. I'm still with Apex, but I'll be back to assistant editor, conventions and the like. They are really happy for me.

As for the tie-in projects, they are fabulous and wonderful and exciting (and a little bit intimidating). I will announce them as contracts are signed and permission for public knowledge is given.
jennifer_brozek: (Default)
August 1st is my personal New Year's Day. Has been since I moved to Washington. Something big and life changing always seems to happen to me around August. So, I've just embraced the 1st as my New Year's Day and the month of August as a month of change. This year is no exception.

I've accepted the position of managing editor of Black Room Publications. This is the special projects division of the award winning Apex Publications company. What does this entail? An awful lot. What does it entail in specific? I don't know. I do know that after all of the congratulations comes the hard work. Black Room Publications is mine and I'm responsible for it all. From the acquisitions of new projects to seeing through the projects already under contract to marketing to slush.

Obviously, I can't do this alone. And I won't. I just don't know who is doing what yet.

I do know I've been moving towards this for a while. I've been with Apex Publications for 2.5 years. First as a slush reader. Then as an assistant editor (read: editing and other duties as assigned). Now this. This is what I needed to continue to grow. I get to learn a lot more about the business side of things: the budget, unit pricing, marketing costs, and other such painful, real details that all small press companies deal with.

What will Black Room publish? Well, I've got some ideas on that but I still have to run them by the head honcho. So, for now, I'm going to finish out the current contracts. In a way, Black Room Publications is stepping in for Apex Publications while Apex Publications works on leveling up with its national distributions.

For right now, I'm not accepting submissions. The website is just a splash page until I'm able to digest more of this huge piece of pie I've been given. I do know I'm excited beyond all believe and just a tiny bit intimidated. I can't wait to see what is going to come of it. It will be awesome and terrifying and that's exactly what I want.

September 2017

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