Now I bet you’re wondering what swag has to do with writing (or maybe not). Conferences for the year are starting already (well, they never really stop) and who doesn’t like swag? No matter what conference you go to someone will hand you swag. What makes the best swag? What catches the reader’s eye? Makes them want to keep your swag?

There are a lot of different options out there these days. Yes, you can get xxx million bookmarks made up, or post cards or business cards for pennies BUT think about this – how many of those paper swag items get brought home? How many end up in the trash can in the hotel room? I’m not saying that they all end up in the trash but I’d be willing to bet a majority do. I would suggest if you do go with a paper option, make it unique – maybe get some ribbon and tie a charm to it? Or if you have pretties for your covers use them (I’ve still got Jet Mykles Heaven Sent series bookmarks).

Paperless options. There are millions and millions of different things you can use for swag. Step out of the box. Go away from the “norm”. Show some creativity (because you know you’ve got it in spades – you’re an author!). Swag doesn’t have to be expensive but try and connect it to you and your books. Some swag that I still have on my desk from a conference or two ago – two items from Stephani Hecht, a foam hockey puck and a mini emergency kit. She took inexpensive items that connected with her series (both of them) and ‘branded’ them using a sticker with her logo and name.

The organizers for GayRomLit went in an awesome direction, I thought, last year. They had a swag room where attendees “shopped” for their swag almost forcing authors into putting thought into their swag. You value your readers so why not show it with some unique swag from you?