I always come back from a conference both exhausted in mind and energized in spirit. Being around women (and those few men!) who love books, writing, creative outbursts, laughter, and interactions just makes me smile. Even just writing about it was fun!
Some favorite things from this Washington Romance Writers Retreat weekend...
Mindy Klasky wasn't there for the weekend but did come to the lunch. And it was wonderful to see her recognized with an award, and also get to spend time just talking about careers, new house, books, and opportunities. I loved working with her, and am delighted to see her enthusiasm and career doing so well!
Mary Blayney and I (and a group of others!) got to geek out about our love for Lois McMaster Bujold and argue over where to start others on reading them! :)
I got to eat two meals with Sarah Morgan and listen to her heartfelt and emotional speech about "making the moments count" in your books and in your lives. She was inspiring and wonderful and loads of fun!
I don't believe I had ever said more than "hi!" to Laura Reeth before, but now I do feel as though I know her a bit! She taught me some more about Instagram (so beware world!) and now I have to find the time to take some more photography courses. Maybe that one in Ireland.... :)
I also did a wonderful panel with Sarah MacLean (my second panel with her I think!), Monique Patterson and Patience Bloom (and a train ride with her!) on Old School Romances (i.e crazyawesome titles from the 70s and 80s and more). I came down with my list of favorites and added a few more to it. I think I'll post the list another day!
There were great workshops --even if Sarah MacLean's were standing room only!--and I liked Maria Geraci's talk on characterization.
It was fun to meet up with authors I knew before like Geri Krotow and Heidi Hormel as well as new ones!
The Romance Jeopardy was great! I got co-opted on to the Miss Fisher's Flappers (a 20s theme carried out very creatively by all the groups), and wore my short black wig with pizazz I think! :) Our team didn't win (it was unfair! and Sarah MacLean got bruised!) but The Legend and the others who ran the parade were lots of fun. And superorganizer Diane Kowalyshyn made the whole retreat feel smooth and organized!
And loads of fun passing by NSA and going in to Fort Meade and eating pie with Kim Lowe when heading back to the train on Sunday!
And thanks for all those members who were welcoming, friendly, good conversationalists at meals and volunteered their work! Stephanie, Lauralynn (sp?), Sharon, Gabriel, Diane, Barb, Merry, Taylor, Tanya, Angele, Tara, Mary and everyone else whose name I've forgotten!
I'm feeling energized and exhausted still, but eager to see what's next!
Thanks, Washington Romance Writers, and now I know why everyone wants to keep coming back! :)