I’m writing this in the 8th floor lobby of the Marriott Marquis in New York City as the RWA National Convention winds to an end. The RITAs are over, authors are meeting at the bar for one last drink together. I am waiting for my train—that leaves at 3:00am Sunday morning.
It was a very different conference for me. I only got to attend three workshops—all on craft—which were fantastic. I learned a lot about putting sexual tension, subtext, and conflict into my novels. I also met some wonderful new writers, heard some funny and poignant keynote speeches from the likes of Julia Quinn and Nalini Singh, and found some awesome gluten-free pizza.
What was most different was my schedule. Thursday and Friday were packed with meetings with my publisher, a book signing, a party, pitches, a meeting with my virtual assistant. I was in perpetual motion it seemed from 6am until midnight. This schedule was the most different from other RWA conferences I have attended. Both of the other years I had more time to attend workshops, to hang out, to write even. The only things I’ve written since Wednesday are blog posts. Which isn’t good as I got two requests for fulls in my pitch sessions and I need to polish that manuscript!
And what was hanging over my head the whole week, niggling in the back of my mind, was the workshop on Swag for the Romance Author. I am happy to report that I survived the experience, although I don’t think I’ll do that again for a while. 🙂 I spent all of Saturday in preparation for the workshop, but that prep work paid off because I think it went very well. It was a very small audience, but they all seemed very attentive and asked a lot of great questions (most of which I actually could answer).
I also got to connect with another historical author, Lindsay Downs, who I’ve known on Facebook for years but had never met. He was the moderator for my workshop and we got to have dinner and drinks during the week, which was simply wonderful.
If I have a regret it’s that I was in New York City, in Times Square, for four days and didn’t get to see a single play. 😦 But this wasn’t the time for that. This was the time for working on being a better writer and I do believe the things I learned this week will help me immeasurably in furthering my career and my writing.
If you are an author, please consider coming to RWA 2016 in San Diego. It will be the best money you spend on your writing career.