It’s fairly simple: don’t travel.
That’s my solution; watch the Police and the Tax-Man miss me; I’m immobile!
Having arrived at the start of June realizing that The British Fantasy Society’s FantasyCon was only a little over four months away, the state of the finances of both myself and the company couldn’t be described as being ‘set on solid ground’, and indeed the great statistical likelihood that things will get worse before they get better, the decision has been arrived at that the United Kingdom will be an I.A.M.-free zone during the coming autumn.
This is not something I’m too happy about, obviously, but given the reality that I have yet to repay a single dollar of the costs of last year’s event-filled trip (my première voyage off the North American continent was destined to be legendary, and I’ve never known how to do anything in half-measures) and as my only employment is through Humdrumming it’s unlikely that I’ll be able to do anything about that in the interim, never mind get my hands on the same amount again in a matter of a dozen weeks, there was no choice but this one to be made. Granted, a way for the company to pay my way over and back could be found, but only at the cost of the authors’ well-deserved fees. This is hardly a solution, however, as the only thing that the firm has in any tangible fashion is the goodwill of the authors whose works we publish. Lose that, and the firm has little — if anything — with which to exist.
What is potentially the most disheartening possibility is that this may be the year that Humdrumming is realistically likely to be nominated for, and potentially win, something during the BFS Awards event. Even if we were only to be granted a look in on the nominations list, the opportunities presented during three-day flurry of events to meet authors we’re publishing, as well as ones who might be a part of our stable either soon or in the more distant future, is not one which is properly appreciated until the thing is experienced. You fall into conversation with people you’d not have met otherwise, people whose work is already proudly presented is seen in a new and brighter light as a result of hearing others speak in reverential terms of the writing, perhaps a chance meeting with a Guest of Honour leads to opportunities not even considered possible until then.
Indeed, this year we have a number of wonderful books to launch, and even have a couple of wonderful things to make official announcements of for the first time. We even are to have our own book launch event, something rarely heard of for any publisher, and certainly not for one whose existence is less than five years in age.
Yet, sadly, this is the way things have transpired this year.
Ah well, one makes what decision one can based upon the information available at the time one makes it.
Still… it’s an arse, i’nit?