The Confounding Dilemmas of Swag Bags

11650_mlt_fiber_optic_hair_clip_modelv2_600I’m heading for Romantic Times BookClub convention in Dallas in May.  And convention time means promo time which in turn, in this instance, means swag bag time.

This year I will be a Table Captain at the Intergalactic Bar and Grille — for my lovely friends, Linnea Sinclair and Stacey Kade.

Now, if y’all know Linnea and have been to her Bar and Grille party (scifi romance, kids, in case you didn’t catch the “intergalactic” part), you know Linnea loves her blinkie, glowie, and sparkly things.  I mean she really really likes them and her party has become famous, or infamous, for such.

So, I began my search for blinkie/glowie/sparkly things and after much angsting decided on what is pictured above.  A tad bit pricey per piece, but it was what I wanted to put in my swag bags. Plus, I wanted one (or two).  🙂

I  ordered (click on the pic and you can see where I ordered from – this place is freaking amazing and is all about the blinkie and glowie and sparkly).  My order came promptly.  the box contained the correct items and in the correct number — BUT … and isn’t there always a freaking BUT?

BUT — they were packaged lengthwise on cardboard backing and in plastic.  I mean, long, really long, lengthwise. I’m not sure why I thought they would be curled up in a nice manageable size bag, but I did and I was wrong, wrong, wrong!!

As my friend Robyn Peterman would say “Jesus Christ in a boob tube,” how was I going to put this swag into a bag along with my other swag so as not to break, damage, or destroy the blinkie, glowy, sparkly thinginess of them?

Dear Readers — This is the dilemma of an author and her swag bag.

However, I came up with several options:

1.  Send them back and order something nice and small.  NOOOOO!!  I wanted the hair thingies.  They’re pretty and sparkly and float about the hair like something alien.

2.  Leave them in their original packaging and attach a sticker each one with my author name identifying me as author of the Prime Chronicles series and ship in the box that they came in from the manufacturer and label such box as “1 of 2” and send another box properly labeled as “2 of 2” with my other swag in the smaller baggies. The problem with this is one of the boxes could get lost “in transit” and only half my swag shows up and I look like a chintzy piker.


3.  Remove the outer plastic, fold the long cardboard in half (thus leaving the barrette attached to its backing which has the crucial instructions on operation and battery replacement) and place in a large baggie into which I can put the other swag.  The fiber optic fronds curl nicely and so far with the one I am testing in a bag, said fronds spring back and still work.  🙂  Of course, there  is nothing else in the baggie and the baggie is not sitting at the bottom of a box of lots of other similarly packed baggies.  So, will the weight break the fiber fronds?

See my dilemma?  What to do ?  Help please! I will entertain other suggestions.

Please note, these boxes have to be shipped by April 24th to a general delivery service in Dallas which will then take the boxes to the convention hotel. Only proper labeling and a shit load of luck will get said boxes to the team of elves that work with Jo Carol to stuff the big-ass goody bags for the Bar and Grille.

Just think of all the loot.  I mean, I am not the only Captain, kids.  Lots of lovely swag for anyone attending this party on Friday evening of the con. Plus lots of games for fabulous prizes and I heard wine and munchies mentioned also.

And I’d like to thank my good friend Pauline Jones, who laughed at and with me over this dilemma (when I e-mailed and whined to her) and said I should blog about it.  She said readers needed to know what we authors face when approaching swag and promo for conventions.  Such angst! But Readers are worth it!!

3 thoughts on “The Confounding Dilemmas of Swag Bags

  1. Hello Monette! That is quite a dilemma you have on your hands. Those hair lights look awesome. You could try to put them in the bag with the barrette down and leave the end hanging out of the bag, but when placing the bags in the shipping box should be arranged so the bags sit at the bottom with the free ends of the lights layered on top of the bags. Hope this helps. Good luck!


  2. Sounds like a trip to the dollar store might be in order. I’m pretty sure you could find a small container to … well … contain, as well as protect, your awesome hair piece. Then you could place them in your swag bag without worry. Maybe something like this would work:


  3. LOLOL! I am a bad influence aren’t I? My family is always telling me I can’t blog about something. But it made a great post! I can’t wait to see them! I went pretty small, though delicious. Doing lip balms from AnaBanana. 🙂


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