Archive for January, 2005

Sunday, January 30th, 2005

There’s been a lot of talk about conferences lately on the loops. Opinions are like a**holes and everyone has one. I am no exception. (wg) I thought since the talk of conferences is in the air I’d list a few observations.

I’ve been to four conferences since I started taking my writing seriously, two were the RWA Nationals, one was the Romantic Times Convention, and lastly my local RWA conference. The first National I attended was completely overwhelming. I’d finaled in a contest that was to be announced during the conference. I didn’t setup any agent or editor meetings because frankly, I was terrified. I had no idea what I was doing. I did listen to talks by a couple of agents, including my future agent. I took notes on whatever any editor said. LOL! Luckily, I met a wonderful woman whom I’m still friends with today. We got to be freaks together. 🙂

On the flipside of that conference is the Romantic Times Convention. I went to that conference in 2001. I must say that the focus of that gathering is on fun, fun, fun. I know that their ‘writing’ emphasis has grown over the years. Not sure how much that will change things. It’s a laid back affair that allows you to meet other authors and readers, who share your interests. I actually made more friends at that conference than at National. I think it’s because RT is relaxed and people at National are a bit tense. National last year was no exception. It may have been Harlequin’s sudden announcement of a shakeup or the stormy weather, I don’t really know. For some reason there were a lot of depressed and burnt out writers walking around that conference. The mood was like a contagion. I didn’t even feel better after I arrived home. I just kept thinking that I’d wasted a lot of money for little return.

I know I’m rambling, but please bear with me.

I think if you’ve never attended a conference before you should pick a local conference to start with. For one, you’re likely to know some of the people attending. For another, the tension that exists at the bigger gatherings doesn’t permeate the local conferences.

That said, if you’re newly signed, then by all means go to National. You’ll get a chance to meet you editor (if they attend) and your agent. Face to face meetings are ALWAYS helpful. I still hope to meet my editor someday.

So far this year I’m only planning to attend the Romantic Times Convention. It’s not far from my hometown and both my books will be out. This will be my first booksigning, so that should be interesting. :-O I haven’t decided whether I’ll be going to National. Almost a year later, I’m still trying to shake last year’s vibe. (If I don’t go, I will be purchasing the booklet and CD.) I’d also like to give a few smaller conferences a chance. There are some amazing local chapter conferences that sellout quickly because they’re so popular. If I don’t manage to make National, I plan to attend one of them.

What do you all think about conferences? What do you get out of them? Do you like them or hate them? What do you expect to get out of a conference?

Saturday, January 29th, 2005
And the winners are…

Cindy Gowett and Cherie Michalec come on down. You guys are the next contestants on the…Sorry, I got carried away. (wg) You’ve both won an ARC of Bad Boys Over Easy. Woo Hoo!!! Congratulations!

Because I enjoy giving things away so much, I decided to pick a third winner. Yes, I’ve done it again. I picked the first person who entered the Bad Boys Over Easy contest.

Do you know who that was? I didn’t think so.

Sylvia Day you are the lucky winner of a Bad Boys Over Easy ARC. And this happened all because you were the very first person to enter the contest. You beat the second entry by 12 minutes. See there’s a lot to be said for going first. 🙂 Congratulations one and all.

Friday, January 28th, 2005
Contest Ends

And now the time is near as I face the final curtain… Okay, I’m sure that’s a bit too melodramatic, considering it’s just the end of a contest. I’m also aware I probably screwed up those lyrics. Do think that’s going to stop me? Nay!

Today is my sister’s birthday. Yeah! Happy Birthday, T. I won’t go into how old she is since I’m older. LOL! To mark the occasion, I picked today to end the ‘Bad Boys Over Easy’ ARC contest. I’m giving everyone until 6:00pm Pacific Coast Time to enter. Afterwards, I will have dh pick two entries (because he did such a good job picking the winners of the ‘Wicked Women On Top’ contest). I will announce the winners on tomorrow’s blog.

This is so fun. I love giving stuff away. 🙂 Good luck!!!

Thursday, January 27th, 2005
Amazon Bestseller List

Okay, I know it’s not a big deal, but I just found the Amazon Romance Bestseller list on the site and “Wicked Women On Top” is number 14 under anthologies. If that wasn’t cool enough, “Bad Boys Over Easy” is number 21. I’m so psyched! I had no idea the Bestseller lists existed. (That would’ve required reading on my part. LOL!;) What a wonderful surprise. I’ve been doing the Snoopy dance around the room, because I’ll take anything I can get at this point. Woo Hoo!!!

Wednesday, January 26th, 2005
Local RWA Meetings

My local chapter met last night for the first time this year. It’s always a very upbeat meeting because everyone is catching up after the holidays. The tone of the meeting was one of business and goal setting. A wonderful woman named Cathy spoke about setting her goals every year. (She’s one of those people that actually achieves all the goals she’s sets.) She said a couple things that hadn’t occurred to me before. She said along with your regular goals include your aspirations and something new to try.

Now I’ve always heard that you should separate your aspirations from your goals because you can’t control aspirations. (ie I will make the NY Times Bestseller’s List this year.) But she said she didn’t quite agree because there are things you can do that can work you toward that goal. You can write certain types of books. You can develop a better relationship with your editor and agent. You can come up with a promotional plan. I hadn’t thought about it that way, but I actually found myself agreeing with her.

The second thing she suggested is to set at least one goal to try something new. Now that can be anything from parasailing to writing a childrens book, if you currently write sci-fi. I found that particularly helpful because I’ve actually applied that thought without consciously making it one of my goals. As many of you know, my current WIP is ‘not’ a romance in the traditional sense of the word. I’ve found the process of writing this book (with the exception of world building 😉 to be incredibly freeing. The point she made was you never know if you can do something unless you try. Be adventurous.

So I’m off to be adventurous.

Tuesday, January 25th, 2005
World Building and other things I equate to root canal…

I spent the afternoon yesterday working on enriching the world in my paranormal. I added some of the information that was asked for and plan to add the rest over the next couple of days. I can’t help but feel I’m doing a major info dump, even though I’ve only added a paragraph and a few sentences here and there. I’ve worked some of the information into the conversation, but it still doesn’t ‘feel’ authentic to me. I hope it reads better than I think it does. Grr…

Monday, January 24th, 2005

If you’ve been trying to get to my site and have been receiving errors, please be patient. I’m not sure yet what is happening. I do know that if you hit refresh a couple of times it seems to bring the site up. Talk about a pain in the butt. Grr…As soon as my ‘tech’ support gets home from work I will have him take a look at it. Thanks for dropping by…or at least trying to. (wg)