Note: This is describing a trend, not a specific convention.
Dear convention organizers: As more authors are representing themselves (or are represented by small publishers like myself), please be aware that we have DAY JOBS. We are not multi-person operations, and are also on your panels, seminars, and writing tracks.
Seriously, when you have your weekend convention require people be set up before the end of the regular business day, or have them doing 10-12 hour shifts in the dealer room (or going until 5pm on Sunday), you’re inviting one of three responses:
1. Fewer dealers.
2. Abandoned tables
3. Us not coming to your convention.
I understand that you want to make sure all your guests have access to the dealer’s room; that said, there’s a point of diminishing returns for us. It might not be a big deal for the big folks who sell at conventions for their full-time job, but for the rest of us?
I guess this sounds like sour grapes, considering that a lot of places give authors discounted tables (compared to other vendors), but I like to fulfill my obligations. Don’t put me in a position where I have to make hard choices like that.