I Survived Romcon 2013!

photo(5)Me oh my! I had such a wonderful time at Romcon this year!! It was my first “Reader” conference, and so much different than the other conferences I’d attended in the past. There were no meetings with agents or publishers, no workshops on craft… Nope, everything was geared for the readers! And since I am… and always will be… a reader FIRST, I have to say it total awesome sauce.

photo(2)Okay, okay, okay… I was there in the capacity as an “Attending Author”. That means I had events scheduled that I participated in. First thing was an author orientation. They had each of us introduce ourselves to the other authors (as if anybody in the room hadn’t recognized who Gena Showalter was—puleeze!), and I generally hate doing those intros to a room full of people. Add to that the fact that Megan Hart was in the room, and I absolutely love her, I was a nervous wreck! So, yes, when it was my turn, after I introduced myself, I said, “…and when I’m not writing, I twitter-stalk Megan Hart.” Yes…I went there. In a room full of people. With her in it! She pretended like she was going to sneak out of the room at that point. Very funny. And I did get to meet her later. Awesome woman!

SurroundedbyTemptationAt the opening breakfast, all the finalists in the Reader’s Choice Awards were announced. The third book in my Woods Family Series, SURROUNDED BY TEMPTATION, was named as one! I was sooo tickled! I was up against some kickass authors, but I got to wear a button all weekend showing everybody I’d finaled in the contest.

Now, the first reader event I was scheduled to do was this Author-Speed-Dating thingy. Readers had two minutes at each table to discuss whatever they wanted before time was called and they all had to shift seats. You’d be surprised just how much you can say in two minutes… and just how quickly that time flies! The highlight of that event for me was when a reader sat down at my table, looked at my name, gasped wide-eyed and squealed, “It’s you!” Yes, I’ve met people who’ve read my books, but that was the first time someone squealed! There aren’t words to describe that feeling.

photo(3)Next, I had the book signing. Since there were so many of us, we were separated into two sessions by last name. I had a hard time staying in my seat because there were several books I wanted to buy and have signed! I got as many pics as I could with me and other authors, but the highlight of that was when the fan from the speed-dating event came over to buy a book. We chatted for a while then she asked if she could have her picture taken with ME! Again… words cannot describe how cool that was.

photo(4)I also hosted a game with Eve Langlais. In fact, I hung out with her and Parker Kincade most of the weekend! Parker and I have been friends for years and now I see Eve and me building a great friendship, too. Why wouldn’t I when she draws like this?

Eve and I also hosted a cocktail hour with Shyla Colt. There are videos of this lurking around. I wish I could deny it’s me in those vids, but alas, anybody who’s ever met me knows just how thick my country accent is. And now they know how lose my tongue is when I’m drinking a long island ice tea while at the microphone. I still had a blast! And why yes, Megan Hart and Lauren Dane came to drink it up at the cocktail hour, too. And Barbara Vey was my heckler for a change (long story there. :P).

So yes, I had a great time. I got to chat with Sylvia Day again, and it was surreal when she walked into the room I was in, recognized me, and came over and started talking. Very cool woman. Even with her hectic schedule and much deserved success, she’s still very laid back. Even though my book didn’t win in the category I was nomiated—one of Cherise Sinclair’s Masters of the Shawdowlands books did, so I can’t complain losing to her!—it was still a wonderful experience.

DarkestSinAnd speaking of contests…my erotic romantic suspense, Darkest Sin, has been nominated in the RWA Passionate Plume contest!! This was a very competitive contest. The winner will be announced next month at the National RWA convention in Atlanta. Again, I’m in with some stiff competitions… as in NYT and international bestsellers…so as cheesy as it sounds, it really IS an honor just to be a finalist in that contest. I’ll let y’all know how that one turns out, too. 😉