Saturday, July 26, 2014

RWA Report

I'm sitting in a San Antonio coffee shop. Not the main conference hotel one, which is full--even at this early hour--with my beloved fellow RWA members abuzz with the energy of the final day (and the prospect of the awards ceremony tonight). I'm taking a break, in this tucked-away spot, with a few local cops for company, savoring the relative silence before I jump back into the fray.

This has always been my favorite conference. I've attended for many years, long before I had ever published a book. I love the enthusiasm of the first-timers, the collegial kindness of veteran attendees. I love the generous sharing of ideas and advice and experience. I love seeing some of the stalwarts speak, seeing how their careers have taken twists and turns none of us could have predicted.

Any number of years ago, I developed a publishing crush on editor Abby Zidle, who struck me as the wisest and funniest person around. It would be another decade before we started working together, but a couple nights ago I got to sit with her on the Pocket/Gallery party bus (disco lights! tipsy authors attempting pole dances mid-transport!).

Another highlight was my signing. Gallery generously printed up some ARCs, but by the time I reached the signing room after my workshop, they were almost all gone. This is a far cry from my very first signing at RWA National, where the books somehow got lost in transport, or subsequent ones where I sat nearly hidden behind my stacks of books, unable to interest anyone in them. Nowadays kind readers seem more willing to take a chance on me -- and I'm hoping they enjoy MISSING PLACE.

Here's a photo of me with one of my very favorite RWA authors, Sheila Roberts. She embodies everything I love about this group: classy, funny, sweet and sassy. I'll be shipping her new book, along with a dozen other treasures, home today, so that when I get back to California and find the box waiting for me, the magic of these few days will last a little longer. (Yes, I realize I'm sounding a little Tinkerbell-ish, and you may be wondering where my cranky usual self has gone, but that's just how special this group of women is.)

1 comment:

Pat Coffey said...

The best part of a conference is the rejuvenating effect one receives from attending. It's enough to inspire and get the creativity machine oiled.