Monday, July 09, 2018

Tips for Finding and Tabling at Library Hosted Conventions

Why Table at Library Cons?

I've really grown to enjoy tabling at small, local library shows.  It's a great laid back way to earn extra income on a Saturday and has proven a fantastic way for me to sell copies of 7" Kara to an audience interested in children's comics.  Library cons are often free (or very inexpensive!) to table at, free for the public to attend, and are a low stress tabling opportunity for artists and self-published creators.   If you're a comic creator who prefers to sell comics over other types of merchandise, library conventions are a perfect way to attract a literature-loving audience, and can be a wonderful first convention opportunity for newer artists.

For me, library conventions offer another bonus- I get to meet and chat with librarians who are interested in children's books and children's comics.  I get to serve as an advocate not only for my own work, but for other kidlit creators who deserve recognition but may not have the opportunity to make such connections.

Pros:
Shorter hours
Less of a financial commitment- tables, admission, and parking are usually free
Great for first time tabling artists
A mix of people from a variety of backgrounds
More laid back

Cons:
Generally smaller shows
Often not well promoted outside the library
Usually only last one day

How I Find Out About Library Cons:
Talking to attendees at other area shows- as what shows they're attending this year
Talk to other artists- at what conventions they have lined up
Check out local art stores, local coffee shops for fliers
Ask around!

Demographic:
Mostly families with small children, older adults, teens with a Saturday to kill



Tips for Tabling At Library Cons:

Don't expect to make a lot of money
Have items at a variety of price points- $1 and up
Have stuff for kids
Have a few freebies-mini comics, stickers, business cards, ect
Have stuff to trade
Make friends with the librarians
Be patient!  Con staff is usually volunteer, or librarians who do have other duties
Bring a smaller setup than you would at anime cons
Can be great for networking

Keep in mind:

Usually free to the public
Often free tables for artists
Great as a first con opportunity
Low risk
Great for audience building in your local area

Example setups:


A2CAF

Putman County Library Indie Comic Con, 2017



NOCAZfest 2017


Imaginacon
Destrehan Comic Con
Want help?  I'm available for table consultation-$55 per table design!

A Few Library Con Recaps:

A2CAF
2017:


NOCAZfest

2017 Recap


Imaginacon



PCL CCAF


Destrehan Comic Con