Monday, July 28, 2014

RWA National Convention~Writer's conference feeds the muse.

Last night I got back home to the Jewel Box after being gone five days. Prior to that I was home one day, and prior to that I had a long weekend with girlfriends from school days. Read about our girlfriend weekend in Wisconsin by clicking over to the Sweet Romance Reads blog.

Where, you might ask, did I acquire the lovely tote bag? San Antonio, Texas! I'm so thankful to have been able to attend the Romance Writers of America national convention. I went once before, when it was held in Dallas in 2007. Many things have changed since then. In 2007 I was a newly published author of an ebook, before many people knew what an ebook was. My publisher was a small press, and many didn't consider you a published author unless you were with one of the big New York publishing houses. I'm sure some still look at it that way, but inside the publishing world perceptions have changed dramatically. Some of the most energetic workshops I attended were led by self-published authors.

I met or reconnected with so many wonderful authors. At long last, some of the authors of Sweet Romance Reads got to meet in person, and I hung out quite a bit with Maddie James of Turquoise Morning Press.

The speeches by Sylvia Day, Karen Rose, and Cindy Ratzlaff were inspiring. I made pages of notes in workshops hosted by Bella Andre, Liliana Hart, Marie Force, Barbara Freethy, Courtney Milan, Allison Brennan, Ezra Barany, Lisa Wells, Joan Johnston, Elizabeth Hoyt, and Kristin Wallace. I ran into Turquoise Morning Press author Arlene Hittle more times than either of us could have expected. It really got to be funny.

Yes, Nora Roberts was there, looking great and being gracious as always.

The big awards event on Saturday was classy and exciting. Emcee Simone Elkeles was fabulous, and we were all glad to share the celebration with nominees and winners of the many awards. That's one of the best things about RWA--everyone seems so glad to be there, to meet you, to share information, and to cheer you on in your own career. Pretty cool, eh?

It took longer than expected to get home, due to a mechanical issue with one of the airplanes... But that snafu didn't dampen my spirits. Hey--it was more time to write!


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