Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Post-RWA Recuperation

Tessa Dare accepting the RITA for Regency Historical
Romance Writer's of America's national conference in Anaheim is over.

There was so much stress and planning in leading up to it, I was sure that it would be like my wedding -- over in a flash and leaving me with a compromised immune system. Not so. The three days did blend into one, but every moment was full of opportunity. Yes, I had a schedule (that I sort of kept to), but I had to be open and accessible at all times because I never knew who I was going to bump into (I got all 13 year old fan girl on Zoe Archer in the bar).

It was amazing.

I was able to pronounce empire correctly without feeling pretentious. I learned the true definition of steam-punk (thank you Karina Cooper)as a genre. I even had a discussion about butt plugs and the evolution of what was acceptable in mainstream romance.

I came home with over 100 books, most of them signed by the author. I spoke with many of those authors (who include, but are not limited to, Lynsay Sands, Julia Quinn, Christina Dodd, Suzanne Enoch, Tessa Dare, Mary Wine, Darynda Jones, and Rebecca Coleman... to name just a few).

I pitched to a few agents, all of whom asked for my submission. I tackled in the hallway spoke with a couple editors who also asked for my submissions. Almost everyone, except for one person (if you know who you are, you don't care so it doesn't matter), was accessible, courteous, and receptive.

I've been emailing off the requested first chapters and such over the past few days. I plan to start writing new material tomorrow. As for right now, this very moment, I'm just exhausted. That last hour of the conference, my feet hurt so badly that I wanted to just lay down on the floor and fall asleep. I liken it to that image of the dehydrated man in the desert who just needs to get over that next hill or he might die -- same feeling. Not that I'm complaining about the conference.. I just know that next time I'll need to eat more protein or something (and splurge for a hotel room at the conference site regardless of the ridiculous cost).

Yes, there will be a next time. The conference was so awesome on so many levels. I really, for the first time, felt like a contributing part of the industry. 

See you next year in Atlanta!

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