My trip to California (and back to Texas) is over. On one hand I say thank goodness, on the other, I miss the cool air of Northern California. According to husband it was in the 100s while I was gone. It’s “cooled” down to just 100 since I’ve been home. Just call me “bringer of cool temps” LOL Gwen and I saw lots of the country on our twelve day adventure, and it’s a BIG country if you were in any doubt. Still many many miles of beautiful vistas, no houses or lights and awe-inspiring landscapes! It nourished my soul to be able to see it closer than 40,000 feet through a small dirty porthole.
Our main objective on this trip was the annual Romance Writers of America convention in San Francisco. We arrived in San Francisco on Tuesday afternoon and spent the rest of day relaxing and getting ready to go-go-go. We closed down on Saturday night after FOUR JAM PACKED DAYS!!! I’m not sure how to cover it all, so I’ll just try to hit some of the highlights.
Fresh Fiction staff – Sara, Gwen, Suan, Mindy, Faye, Tanzey
Originally uploaded by freshfiction
Wednesday, July 30th. The Fresh Fiction team met, some of us for the first time face-to-face, and had dinner before the big literacy signing on Wednesday night. We were all in pink — except for Gwen who had an incident with a tire and “gup-covered” luggage at the airport — so we were easy to spot! And had our gold name tags! I think was a first no one forgot theirs (since I’m usually the culprit, I’ve gotta mention this triumph!). From dinner it was off to the signing, a MASSIVE crowd in the main ball room!
We missed the long lines but arrived by 5:50pm so no one had left as they tend to do when they’ve sold all their books, or don’t have any to sell. We’ve gotten smarter over the years and have our lists all ready so we can cover most of the authors. So if we missed any, we’re sorry, we did try really really hard! And then of course, our first catastrophe of the night struck. The battery on Gwen’s camera gave out. As it’s one of those rechargeable ones, we had to rely on Mindy, Faye, and Tanzey to carry with the rest of the evening. I’d type up a list of authors I saw, but that would take the rest of the space. So check out our RWA photos on Flickr and get an idea! Also we’re missing some names for the photos, if you can help us match them up, we’d be grateful!
After the signing, and YES THEY TURNED OFF THE LIGHTS ON US, we went up to the bar to regroup. Tanzey and Suan headed for bed as they’d been at the librarian meetings all day, but Gwen and Mindy went to a few parties, Sherrilyn Kenyon‘s, the Romance Bandits and another they can’t remember. Faye and I rested at the bar — do NOT ever get a green tea tini, it tastes worse than bad cough syrup — and chatted with authors.
Thursday, July 31st Meetings, workshops, luncheons and dinners. It was jam packed from 8am to midnight. The editorial staff (editor Mindy Ewing, editor Tanzey Cutter, reviewer Suan Wilson plus content manager Faye) met with some authors for a coffee break in the morning. Authors included: Sabrina Jeffries, Melody Thomas, Elizabeth Boyle, Mary Burton, and Roxanne St. Claire as well as others. It was a great time for authors and reviewers to meet and chit chat about publishing trends and their books.
Faye, Tanzey and Suan joined the fabulous Nancy Berland team for dinner! They are all TRULY a delight to work with. Gwen, Mindy and I went to Famous John’s Steak House where Gwen managed to confuse the server with her cowfish request. She was tired, and wanted “meat.” A fun time was had by all!
Friday, August 1st More meetings, publisher meet-and-greets, meetings, and PARTIES!!! We split up with all the team members doing different things: attending some workshops, one-on-one with authors, publishers and others. In other words, work work work. But Friday night is the traditional evening for networking and celebrating. We did some of that on Friday night at the Ballantine party, St. Martin’s party — I missed the St. Martini their signature drink. I am assured it was deLicious! On to the Berkley / NAL party — crowded and noisy but fun seeing Angela Knight, Christine Feehan and Celeste. Then it was on to the Harlequin Party at the Four Seasons. With dancing, great food, decadence chocolate and a great crowd of people, the HQ party is the one not to miss! Check out the infamous tree falling as well as the conga line. I’m only sorry I can’t find photos of the handsome men in kilts! A great time was had by most!
Saturday, August 2nd More meetings, publisher meet-and-greets, dinner with one of my favorite authors, Marie Bostwick and then the sad departures. We admired our friends in their festive RITA outfits and wished them all the best! Bringing us books we love to read and talk about is the top in our minds!
See all the photos from our RWA SF Adventures Be sure to comment and help us fill in the blanks!
Fresh Fiction.com …for today’s reader
Don’t miss THE Fresh Fiction Readers Conference on October 11th, 2008! With Sherrilyn Kenyon and many other favorite authors. Details at Readers-n-ritas.org — celebrate passionate literary obsessions