RWA conference

» Posted on Jul 31, 2006 in Blog | Comments Off on RWA conference

First, I have to say I had a great time, meeting new people, seeing old friends and networking. RWA conference is a wonderful place to network in this business. You see editors and agents not only in the classes but in the hallway, lobby and other common places.

I arrived on Monday so my roommate, Laura Marie Altom, and I could do some sighting seeing. We went to the aquarium on Tuesday and it was great. It is the largest one in the world and within walking distance of the hotel. I got to see sharks and whales!!! Also there were beautiful tropical fish. The colors were unbelievable. So calm and serene to sit and just look at the huge tanks full of fish.

Tuesday night I went to the AGM for the KOD (Kiss of Death) chapter of RWA. The dinner was delicious. That isn’t always the case at dinners served by the hotel so it was a nice surprise. Suzanne Brockman was the speaker and she was so inspired. I just have to remember when thinking of my career that the glass is half full–not half empty. We shouldn’t measure ourselves against other writers. Sometimes that’s hard to remember.

On Wednesday I participated in the mini-conference that FHL put on. I gave a speech on Interweaving the Faith into Our Stories and really enjoyed the questions. I will blog on this later in the week. Lenora Worth talked about adding emotional depth to our characters and Colleen Coble gave an inspiring speech at lunch. There was an agent/editor panel where they discussed what they are looking for. The inspirational market is alive and well (growing). The mini-conference and the fellowship of other inspirational writers was a wonderful way to start the conference.

That was the impression I got during the week. The sexy reads were doing well but so were the inspirational ones, too–the two extremes of the line which I find interesting. I heard that historicals were doing better. Paranormal books were going strong. Harlequin is starting a new line in October with dark, alpha heroes and a paranormal storyline. It’s called Nocturne.

The full conference started with a booksigning on Wednesday evening and I had a nice time talking with people. There were about 500 authors who signed so it was a packed room. On Thursday I meet for breakfast with some people from the Steeple Hill boards on the eharlequin web site. Ate way too much (actually did the whole conference). Now I have to lose that weight I gained during the week. Real life has returned.

I went to the PASIC Editor of the Year reception and was happy to see Patience Smith received the honor. I know several writers who have her and rave about her. After that I went to a Meet and Greet with Steeple Hill and got to see old friends. The ladies who write for Steeple Hill are so nice and gracious. Then I went to the Death by Chocolate Party put on by the KOD chapter. By the time I got there all the chocolate was gone!!!! Oh, well, I probably didn’t need anymore. Lynn Bulock received the inspirational award of their published contest for Love the Sinner. I’ve read that and it was really good–funny, quirky characters. Then I went to the eharlequin pajama party. Laura and I always wear matching outfits, and this year was no different. They gave out pillows. Mine looks good on my couch in my office.

Friday was my down day. I had a long lunch with my aunt who lives in Atlanta. I hadn’t seen her in years and it was good to catch up. That evening I went to the Harlequin party at the Ritz. It was great as usual.

Saturday I had several meeting and went to several workshops. The inspirational workshop was good. If you get a chance it would be a good one to buy the tape. Krista Stroever had some good tips for writing for Steeple Hill. Marta Perry talked about writing suspense stories and Terry Reed discussed making stories real and relevant.

RWA did a great job on the Awards ceremony. It was short and fun. They showed clips about writers from different films. I laughed at the skewed view people have of writers as shown in the movie clips.

I hated that the week had to come to an end, but alas, I’m back to the real world. I am jazzed to get started on writing a new story. That is what going to conference does. It gets you renewed and excited about writing.