It began with my drive out on Friday night. Traffic was heavy and I thought I would never get there in time for the first panel I wanted to attend. But I made it! Thus began a weekend of excitement and networking.
The first panel began with laughter but also serious advice for would be writers from Gini Koch and Marcy Rockwell. It was exciting to see two of my favorite authors who always give the best advice! We talked a lot that weekend and in fact, I actually got to spend a lot of time with them as well as Terry Smith and Jordan Summers who also were attending, both also published authors who had a lot of information. I even got to sit down for meals with them and get to hang out! I am looking forward to more time and Gini even offered to give me information on RWA, the Romance Writer's Association which is very helpful to beginning writers.
I also got many opportunities over the weekend to meet a variety of writers. I encountered interesting people and enjoyed James A. Owen's inspirational speaking again. Every time I hear him, it leaves me weepy. The man has done so much and accomplished so many things in his lifetime.
Saturday was workshops and panels and I got a lot of information. I have all written down and at some point will need to convert that to a separate blog. I learned when to kill off a character and just learned that sometimes it is important to the story.
Sunday was my field trip day. After meeting Chris Dickensen and Debbie Boudian and their respective partners and also listening to them reading their novels, I went up to Estrella Mountain Regional Park. Once there, I almost turned back as it costs $6 to enter. Now mind normally that is not a lot but money was tight since it was rent time. Still I went up to the gate and explained that I was an aspiring writer and would like to at least get a map as I have a story I am placing at Estrella. The gentleman was very nice, brought me the maps, and then gave me a temporary gate pass for 30 minutes so I could drive around and take pictures, thus proving that if you ask, you never know what you will get!
I went to the Filk concert which was quite nice. I loved the singing although the actual filk circle later bothered me a bit with off notes but the concert was quite good! I had to restrain the urge to sing along. I went to several panels after this which gave more useful information, the best being the erotica which signaled me that the type of writing I like is highly in demand. I was also given a couple good small publishers that put out erotic romance at least one of which I was familiar with and will check out submission guidelines.
I stayed quite late and then only went out Monday to enjoy the reading by Gini and Marcy of two of their latest works, both as expected quite good. Gini's made me laugh and I was grateful I already have the novel. Marcy's was beautiful descriptions and immediately had me hooked. However, I will have to wait to read hers. The final part of the evening was not spent at the convention but rather out to dinner with Duncan to spend some time together after I had been away all weekend. We went out to dinner at The Melting Pot. Yummy food and a relaxing evening and as always great company! I thoroughly enjoyed my weekend!