It was a wonderful conference. The best out of the four I attended so far. And the icing on the cake was meeting so many friends. I also had the added bonus of being able to visit my former company’s headquarter. Imagine, the president sent me a limousine to pick me up at the airport and drive me to the Marriott.
On Wednesday, I attended the Heartbeat Medical Chapter luncheon. Three editors from HQ Mills& Boon were invited and many published medical romances authors from Us, Australia, England and New Zealand were present. A real feast, especially that I was sitting next to Lucy Gilmour, HQ editor. See picture of Julie Rowe (Heartbeat prez) Sally, Susan, Lucy Gilmour, (three editors at HQ Mills& Boon) and Mona Risk.
On Thursday, it was registration, Pro and Pan general meeting. Helen, Joan and I walked through downtown and Chinatown. I came back for the RWA lunch and Victoria Alexander keynote speech. A hilarious speech from a lovely lady.
Back at the hotel, I hardly had enough time to change and rushed to the FRWA on line chapter gathering. I have met my CPs, my friends from the Writers at Play, and many fellow writers through this chapter, and feel I owe them a lot. Literary Agent Scott Eagan gave us a talk about his career and what he was looking for in new authors. At 9:00 pm I met with Carolyn Hughey, one of my first CP and other authors and we walked to the PASIC (a published authors loop) cocktail. There I met and chatted at length with a great lady, Mardi Balou, who is published by Ellora's Cave and Cerridwen Press. Mardi was a well of advice on how to make it in ebooks. Carolyn introduced me to some of her friends from Avalon and to the owners and editors of Source Books. They are actively looking for new authors with single title books of 90,000 words.
Friday was even busier with many workshops, the most important for me being Emotion, emotion, emotion presented by Barbara MacMahon, Barbara Haney, Jessica Hart, and Lucy Gilmour, about what HQ editors are looking for in new manuscripts. Just before lunch time, Beth Trissel recognized me and called my name. We walked to the lunchroom together. She was wearing at-shirt printed with her cover book. We sat together for lunch. See picture of Beth on the left and Mona on the right at the GH reception.
Elevators are great place to meet people. Seriously, and not only in Grey’s Anatomy. I saw Terry Odell, a Cerridwen Press fellow author and the famous Barbara Vey. I profusely thanked Barbara for posting a review of my book, TO LOVE A HERO and the bookcover on her column at Publishers Weekly for a whole week. She gave me her card and said to write to her. You bet I will. Helen met her in the lobby. A friend of Helen introduced her to Barbara Vey as the winner of the Romantic Time American Title. Barbara hugged Helen, took a picture with her and gave her her card. We are eagerly checking Publishers Weekly.
Too soon, it was already Saturday and the Golden Heart/Rita Award ceremony and reception. I clapped hands so hard for Helen Scott-Taylor, paranormal finalist, and for Beth Trissel, Historical finalist. Even if they didn’t win, they were winners just by being finalists. They wore a pretty corsage and lovely smile.
The icing on the cake happened when they announced the Best First Book winner, Terry Garey, a good friend from the Writers at Play loop. Teri was gorgeous in a golden silk dress that matched the golden Rita statuette she won. We took so many pictures and met so many authors. It was worth the long trip.