Tuesday, July 29, 2008
Is Your Heart in San Francisco?
Is your heart in San Francisco this week? Right now thousands of romance writers are descending on that beautiful city for the Romance Writers of America convention and I don't know if it's dawned of you guys but the loops are already starting to be a snore!!! ZZZZZ.
So while they are partying down in Cali, I'm here in Texas waiting for the tidbits of gossip to trickle in. I know several friends have taken laptops and I'm hoping to hear details.Many of you know that I dropped my RWA membership this year. As a member since 1992 I can't say I got a lot out of RWA except for a really pricey magazine once a month and though I often got some good publishing and writing information, most of the time I felt it was a huge waste of money. So yeah, at the end of June I am officially NOT a member. It's funny too, because I'd just sold enough of one particular book to be eligible for PAN. In the end, I realized I didn't really need RWA to be a writer.
On that note, let me say the conventions are a blast and I know what kind of fun awaits for friends fortunate enough to attend this year. My favorite things about the convention? Umm. It's a long list beginning with meeting up with friends that you've never actually met in person before. There's something wonderful about putting faces to names and realizing someone is just as cool in person as they are on line. Another thing I loved about the RWA conventions was the Goody Room. Tables full of free stuff...book bags, books, pens, and other promo items that are fun to sift through.
The other day I ran off a list of "must do's" for a friend. At the top of the list was the Literacy Booksigning. It's a giant booksigning with all proceeds going to support literacy programs across the country. A very worth event and be sure to bring a camera for pics with your favorite authors. One thing I realized during this event was how NICE romance writers are. They were always willing to chat and take pictures.The workshops are good and my favorites were "Publisher Spotlights" where, as an unpubbed writer longing for publication, you could get the scoop on who was looking for what. Those were usually informal and packed with information.
On the downside? I'm multi-published now but then, I was one of the unpubbed rabble looking for a break and nowhere do you feel the distinction between the have's and have not's than at an RWA convention. It's not that people weren't nice, it was just that you KNEW you hadn't really arrived yet and that's a bothersome feeling. At least to me, it was. And agent/editor appointments? What a joke! Hundreds were herded in and out of the little rooms, nerves dancing, palms sweating and it didn't take me long to realize that most of the writers pitching ideas were told..yeah, send it in! Everyone left smiling. Once, in my group of ten, every single one of us were told this and NO ONE got a contract out of the deal. In retrospect, I think many editors just thought it was easier to be nice and ask for a manuscript than to say no.
Have you attended a convention lately? I'll confess it's been awhile and now that I've dropped my RWA membership, I'll be getting my convention fix at Romantic Times and the upcoming Ellora's Cave Convention next year. What would you most like to find at a convention? Do you want to see the cover models? Party down with friends? Hit a few good workshops? As a reader what do you want to do and see?