Daily Illuminator

April 20, 2008: Getting Ready For GTS

Getting ready for GTS is always . . . odd. Sure, you pack the normal things you would for any trip, like clothes, toothbrush, and a book to read on the plane.

But then you remember it's a business trip. So into the suitcase go the dress slacks, the staff polos, and the gel shoe inserts. Oh, and double up on the grooming supplies -- scruffy is fine when you're touring Chicago, but when you're meeting industry peers for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, as well as the hours in-between, you need to look your best.

Finally, this is a trade show in Las Vegas, which sits in the middle of a desert. Even though it's only April, it's still hot, and no-kidding dry as heck. So you start drinking an extra gallon of water every day -- right now! -- just to be hydrated enough when you get there.

And then (You thought "finally" was it? Ha!) you grab those last few prototypes, or signs, or demo sets that were finished just after the pallet left, and stuff them into your already straining luggage. Oh, and forget about the book; you'll use the flight to brush up on the demo scripts and playtest rules.

At the end of the week, though, even though you're exhausted and your voice is giving out, it's all worth it. Retailers are geeks, after all, and so we're among friends at these shows. The folks you talk to are eager to hear what you've got coming out, not just because they want to sell it, but because they want to play it. And you get to see the other publishers . . . your "opposite numbers" . . . doing the same thing, and getting you excited about what they're releasing through the rest of the year.
-- Paul Chapman

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