Oh yeah. SWAG.
Anyway–yeah. First of all, expensive. I get it, it’s a tax deduction, and a necessary promotional business expense, but I spend the money and I’m thinking, “My GOD we need a new bathroom floor.” Anyway, I’ve sort of made myself live with that (because I don’t want to sound like the Grinch who stole GRL for one thing!) but that’s not even the worst part. (Don’t tell Mate this. He’ll disagree!)
The worst part is PICKING IT OUT!
Dudes! Besides like, endless possibilities of things– tote bags? Pens? Book Marks? T-shirts? Really awesome stainless steel coffee mugs with a collage of my favorite book covers? There’s also what you want to go on the things.
I’ve picked my dragon.
You all know Chicken designed this for me sometime back– I’ve used it as my Facebook avatar since forever. Anyway, it’s my writing dragon, eating plotbunnies for breakfast. Anyway– I’ve had two things that I’ve used for a logo. One is the front cover of Vulnerable, which I still love very much, but I figured that since GRL folks (many of them) aren’t going to be interested in (*sob*) my Little Goddess, my logo needs to be something a little more associated with my strictly m/m stories. There are conversations all the time on Twitter and Facebook among the writers–people bring up our “Muse” constantly. Those of you who have been around for a while know that for me, “Muse” is too gentle a word.
My inspiration doesn’t a-Muse me–it rides me like a hand-shaking, cold-sweating, stomach-cramping addiction. It’s not a monkey on my back, here, it’s a FUCKING DRAGON.
So I figured that was as logical a place as any to start. And then I needed a tagline. Now, since our writer’s conference in March, I’ve watched my fellow writers try to come up with their own taglines. It’s painful. Nobody wants to attach a label to themselves that they want EVERYBODY to identify with them. I mean, what’s my tagline going to be? “I may write while plagued with self-doubt, but at least I can’t clean house?” Uhm, no.
So I’ve got the dragon, and he’s eating plotbunnies for breakfast, but “My writing dragon eats your plot bunnies for breakfast” is more of an inside joke, isn’t it? (That didn’t stop me from putting it on the back of a T-shirt. Don’t ask.)
So really, I’ve got one thing–it’s what I’ve been signing on my books for years.
Now, when I started signing books, I started with a rather pivotal line from Vulnerable– “Blood Like Rain, Amy Lane.” (I used red pens, too, for drama, donchaknow!) Anyway, when I moved to M/M, I sort of got to be known as the Queen of Angst. Now, that’s not entirely fair– we know that, right? I mean, I know I’ve got the whole Promise Rock thing to live down (I’m SORRY about the horse, OKAY?) and Chris and Xan may never forgive me. There were some scary moments in Chase, and, well, Alpha wasn’t a cakewalk, but Queen? Naw… I mean, I’ve got some fun stuff, too, right?
Yeah. “Cute and sweet” rhymes with “fresh meat.” It does NOT however rhyme with Amy Lane.
However, “Angst and Pain” does.
So, uhm, yeah. There are elements of my swag that do proclaim “Angst and Pain, Amy Lane.”
I’ll try to remember that when I’m signing Sidecar, or Clear Water, neither of which are particularly angsty, and one of which is actually sort of funny, right? But, a tagline is a tagline, and I have to admit– it looks sort of cool on top of the dragon logo on the tote bag!
Oh, wait– about the tote bags. I was totally going to get the purple and lime green– I WAS– I don’t care HOW hideous it was, it was the color of my favorite sock yarn, and we all know how attached I am to that! But it didn’t matter. I was voted down. Yes, Chicken said it was hideous and needed to be changed, but she wasn’t the deciding vote.
No, the deciding vote was the graphic artist in charge of production who sent me the alternative version in purple and white without being asked, presumably to save me from myself.
It worked, but I still maintain that purple and lime green would have been an unforgettable combo! And Chicken still maintains there are some things she would like to forget.
And that’s not the end of it. My swag has a theme and it’s complicated and I had to have
three four different companies do the frickin’ logo and after all that? And I think people will probably hate it. But hey…
Angst and Pain, Amy Lane, right? Nothing like living your own tagline!