Friday, July 30, 2010

Friday Night Lights in Orlando

Great time here at RWA nationals in Disney. Fireworks every night at nine o'clock on the dot. We can see them from our hotel room in the Dolphin. Yes, the fireworks are at Epcot, not in the bar.

I've met some wonderful people in the lobby of the hotel. My roommate and I often spend our extra time hanging out in the lobby chatting with folks. I love romance writers. We speak the same language and it doesn't matter if I never knew you before today, I'm the same species so I totally get you.

The keynote lunch speech today was given by Jayne Ann Krentz. She encouraged writers to identify your core story, know your market, and understand the importance of fictional landscapes to your readers. She talked to us about her career ups and downs over the years. I enjoyed hearing her speak. Not quite as much as I enjoyed listening to Lee Child speak yesterday, but that could be because I'm a sucker for a wonderful British accent. Now I'll have to read the Jack Reacher series.

I went to hear Linda Howard give her swan song on 12 Steps to Intimacy. It was awesome. She's retiring from speaking. I'd seen the list of her twelve steps before, but I really enjoyed her presentation. The delivery was flawless and funny. Definitely one you don't want to miss on the recordings folks.

Cherry Adair's workshop on Creating a Career Plan That Works was excellent. One of the best tips I got from her class was to identify your dream publishing house. Then find their debut authors and read their books. Ask yourself why they might have been published. It's a good way to begin to find that elusive quality editors are looking for in new authors and their work.

Also loved Suz Brockmann and Sarah Frantz's chat on Theme. Sarah is an academic and president of the International Association of Popular Romance Studies. She gave the literary critic's view of Brockmann's themes and Suz then revealed the theme she'd intended for each book. An interesting exercise. Brockmann's point was if you know your themes, or the themes you tap into in your stories, you can make them work for you to create a cohesive three-dimensional story.

I pitched to Pamela Ahearn and received a request for the first seventy-five pages of The Meggido Mark. Yay! Another pitch tomorrow morning to Emmanualle Alsphaugh (soon to be Morgan again). Wish me luck. I also won a critique by Holly Root for my query and first ten pages at the Pro Retreat.

Tonight the publishing houses throw their gala events. My roommate went to the Harlequin party and I'm sure many of the Rockville8 are off at the St. Martin's party since Jen Enderlin was gracious enough to invite all WRW members to the party this year. I, however, am relaxing in my room tonight. Since, yes, I'm the introvert whose tank was on empty by five o'clock today. I did enjoy a bit of fresh air first. I walked the Disney boardwalk around the lake and then got on the water taxi for the rountrip ride from the Swan to Epcot and back. It was nice to feel the breeze and get the fresh air and exercise after remaining indoors most of the week.

I promise I'll take my camera out of the room tomorrow to snap a few photos. There are more workshops tomorrow and the Golden Heart and Rita dinner and awards festivities tomorrow night. It's been a great week. Catch you all soon!


  1. FABULOUS to get requests, Candy!! Sounds like a very productive conference! ENJOY the rest, and thanks for the tips. I also loved Linda Howard's 12 Steps list, and might want to hear the tape. :-)

  2. Yes, the list really comes alive when she talks about it. I'd recommend the recording. I think she had to cut it a little short compared to her normal presentation, but really good information. :)

  3. Hey Candy - Keely and I were wondering where you were. Glad you had a good night. Love the pics!