Tag Archives: RT Convention

RT Roundup – the Last Day and Loot!

Day 4 of RT meant only one thing for me: the Book Fair, which didn’t start until almost 11. That left us time in the morning to pack and get out of the hotel for a few minutes. We tracked down an Ihop a few blocks away and had a real breakfast for less than the $30 I know some people paid in the hotel.

Of course, being L.A., we didn’t have to walk a block before we caught a film crew:

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I have no idea what they were filming, but they were using the beautiful L.A. Public Library as their setting. Gotta love California!

Packing meant I had to find places to stow all the loot I’d collected. I promised you a picture…and for reference, this is Killian’s queen-sized bed:

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What are you looking at? How about 36 free books? If I’d paid full price, I would have spent $381.74 for them.  That almost makes up for the conference fee right there. In the bottom half of the picture you see all the goodies and promo pieces. Bookmarks, postcards, sample reads, pens, pencils…those were the standard fare. Can cozies seemed to be pretty popular, I took home 4 of those. Other items included paperclips, reflectors, a hot pad, candles, rubber duckies, a coin purse, playing cards, rulers, even a bicycle horn. My favorite (being a practical person) was the pen-sized lint brush from “Between the Sheets.” That went directly into my suitcase!

I did actually buy 3 books at RT.  The first, Howdunit Forensics by D. P. Lyle, I bought at the bookstore after attending his workshop. I did catch him later and got it autographed. The second, The Ghost and the Goth by Stacey Kade, I bought at the Expo. It’s a YA that she’s gotten good feedback on by high school boys, so I’m hoping my son might like it. (Finding books for teenage boys is HARD). The third, Undertow by Cherry Adair, I bought at the Book Fair.  Cherry gave me lots of encouragement, and lit a fire under me to get this second book done!

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The Book Fair itself was huge–something like 5 times bigger than the Expo. I don’t know how anyone could possibly see all the authors in just three hours. Unfortunately, I didn’t have nearly that long, and since I wanted Cassandra Clare’s autograph, most of my short time at the fair was in line for her.  I did see Cherry Adair, and picked up one other little souvenir, a squishy horse that reminded me of Buckeye that has found a home in my daughter’s room.

Do I wish I’d had a table at the Book Fair instead of the Expo? No. I’m pretty sure just about everyone who came to the Expo passed by my table. With something like 20 rows of authors at the Book Fair, I think most of the attendees headed straight for specific authors and didn’t browse too much. Maybe I’m wrong, though.

Overall, the Convention was an awesome experience. I learned a lot, met a TON of people, and was so blessed to spend the time with two ladies I love, Lisa Sanchez and Killian McRae. Never have I had such an easy time with roommates, and I look forward to our next trip.  Anytime, any place, ladies, just give me a buzz!

Upcoming Giveaway

Now that you’ve seen all the loot, how would you like to win some?  I’m putting together a contest for May that will involve a drawing from comments here on the blog. If you like romance and free books, keep your eyes open at the end of this month for instructions on how you can win your own basket of RT goodies!  And I’m sure a familiar title *cough*Whirlwind*cough* will be included.

Meet an Author Monday

Speaking of my good friend Lisa, be sure and check out Meet an Author Monday, hosted on her blog.  Just click on the photo below to check out what other authors are blogging about.  Are you an author? Join the hop with us and meet new readers!

Meet an Author Monday

Click here for the Author hop

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RT Day Three

…aka The Grind. After two days of convention, exhaustion was setting in. And yet we all managed to get up in time for the Kensington mixer…and free Mimosas. Thankfully they were weak, otherwise I think I would’ve just gone back to bed!

That would’ve sucked, too, because I would’ve missed Lisa’s raffle win. She won a basket – well, collander – full of books and baking goodies. Check it out on her site, http://calicheermom.com.

The first workshop of the day was Peeling Away the Layers of Romantic Suspense. The premise was to analyze the movie Body Heat but ended up being a great discussion of pacing and dialog in suspense novels. Cherry Adair is awesome, and I made a point of finding her at the Book Fair. But that’s not until Day 4…

The following workshop, Plotting and Setting Your Mystery, was a little dry, and spent a fair amount of time discussing pantsters versus plotters – something that wasn’t new for me. Yes, I took off early…but I didn’t want to be late for lunch with my publisher.

It was a treat to have lunch with Omnific owner, Elizabeth Harper, and Acquiring Editor, Lynette McCann. More than professional acquainances, Elizabeth and Lynette and I go back quite a ways, and I was fortunate to be able to renew our friendship at RT.

Also joining us was another Robin, an aspiring writer and online friend. I love meeting the people I’ve encountered online, and especially someone so nice who has such a great name! 🙂

After lunch, the plan was to drop off the books I had for sale at the Expo and catch another workshop, but things were a little disorganized. Instead, I waited in line a lot longer than I’d planned. Rather than crash the workshop halfway through, I went back to our room and freshened up before collecting the rest of the stuff for my table at the Expo. A half-hour before the Expo, the three of us headed back down, and got ready for the crowd.  Here’s my table at the Expo:

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The Expo itself was FANTASTIC! It was a pleasure to be seated between authors Jess Dee and Genella DeGrey, and we traded goodies and laughs throughout the Expo.

And that was the point of the Expo, I feel: to connect with people. Readers, writers (both published and aspiring), publishers, booksellers, agents, promoters…all kinds of people stopped by. My sparkly ribbon bookmarks seemed to be pretty popular, and the avenue through which I introduced everyone to Whirlwind. The highlight of the Expo was when Erin Quinn bought a copy of my book – she’s a NY Times Bestselling Author! Thanks, Erin, for supporting a budding author!

After two hours of talking in a large, noisy room, Lisa, Killian and I decided to skip the Avon mixer (which I heard was great with margaritas), in favor of a quiet dinner of Chinese food. Orange Chicken never tasted so good – and it was nice to give our voices a rest!

The day ended with the Vampire Ball. Having never gone to an RT convention before, I wasn’t really sure what to expect. The entertainment was a skit that was sort of a parody of a variety show and was a little hard to follow. The best part was we shared a table with Mr. Romance contestant DeLonn, an actor and model who was also very funny and of course, smokin’ hawt! Wicked Little Pixie has a photo and bio of DeLonn HERE. DeLonn, you rock!

We did score even more books at the Vampire Ball, adding to our hoard. Tomorrow I’ll show you the loot…it’s a sight worth seeing!

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RT Day Two

Day two followed the same path as day one…more workshops, more free books, and more parties. I’ll admit my feet are not really happy at this point since tennis shoes don’t really go with my business attire!

Day two started with a mixer (otherwise known as “free food and books”). The Mystery Chix and Private Dix mixer provided me with breakfast and some new mystery reads, which I love. Thank you to all the groups hosting mixers – avoiding the expensive hotel food is a real gift…and the goodies are fabulous.

Next was the infamous 5 Times a Night? Really? Workshop. It started off with a bang, with statistics about a man’s…er…equipment, and a lot of snide comments, but unfortunately, the title question wasn’t answered. But the panel was amusing, and as you can see, one of the few panels filled with men!

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After taking a break (the trick to conference attendance is pacing yourself) we had lunch and stopped in the Fabulous Forties mixer. The gift books weren’t about the 1940’s though-they were sizzling hot for women in their forties! And those who are *cough* 29.

The last workshop of the day was Boys Don’t Cry: The Male POV. This was the gem of the day, with a discussion of how the man’s mind works. I’ll blog more about it soon, but I really enjoyed it. Two of the authors wrote in genres dominated by men – thrillers and epic fantasy – which added an even deeper level to the discussion.

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The rest of the day included an awards ceremony (another bag of books), the Samhain Steampunk Tea (the BEST food so far), and the Faery Ball (another free book). We didn’t stay for the dancing this time – we were too tired!

Tomorrow I’ll show you all the loot we’ve collected…if I can get it all in one shot!

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RT Day One

The first day of the RT Booklovers conference was great! Books, goodies, workshops, parties…where should I start? How about the business end first…workshops.

RT features a ton of workshops. At any given time there’s usually 15 different ones to choose from, everything from querying agents, to editing, to publisher spotlights, to marketing, to name a few. My first day consisted mostly of specialty workshops in the writer track: Understanding the Science of Crime (Dr. D. P. Lyle is fabulous and funny), and The Care and Feeding of a Paranormal Series. Geared toward writers, these workshops focused on research and longevity of writing a series.

The third workshop I attended was in the reader track, Sex in the Gritty or the Ugly Truth. An odd name for a very fun panel. Authors Barry Eisler and Jennifer St. Giles read sex scenes from various books and the audience had to vote on whether a man or woman wrote them. They even read a quote from Dark Lover, one of my favorite books. How they did it without blushing or giggling, I’ll never know, but the panelists were excellent.

Before the workshops started, the book haul began. We started at registration with the bag all the attendees got…it had two books in it. Then we (me, Killian, and Lisa) took a pass through the “Goody Room” where we were allowed to pick 9 free books from probably a couple hundred titles. Killian scored another half dozen at the historical panel she attended…and this is just the first day! Add to that all the bubbles, rulers, bookmarks, bandaid holders, chapstick, mirrors, sticky notes, trading cards, and other goodies that are everywhere, and we are loaded!

The day ended with the Bollywood party hosted by Ellora’s Cave. We got even more goodies and then there was dancing. Lisa and Killian ripped up the dance floor while I worked on keeping time clapping :-).

It was a long, fun day! On to the next…and 5 Times a Night!

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I Love L.A.!

This is my theme song for this week:

As you’ve probably heard, the RT Booklovers Convention is this week in L.A. I’ve been looking forward to this trip for a long time! I’ve signed up for a ton of workshops – everything from “Romancing the Killer Instinct” to “5 Times a Night? Really?” I can’t wait to meet readers, other new authors, as well as some of the big names from the NY Times Bestseller list. As both an author and a reader, I’ll be pulled in many directions.

Besides all the great information and networking, a conference like RT is all about the goodies! I’ll be looking for new ideas for bling and swag (bookmarks, key chains, trading cards, gadgets, and the like) as well as free books, both to read and pass along.

I’ll also be giving away some goodies of my own at the Indy Expo on Friday, and you’ll even have the chance to win a Kobo e-reader (Remember my post last week?).  Independent authors and publishers from all over will be available to sign books and visit from 4-6pm at the Westin Bonaventura. The public is also welcome (for a small $5 entrance fee). I’m really looking forward to meeting readers, so if you’re in town, please stop by!

I CAN’T WAIT!

But, before all the fun, I have to get my bags packed.  Maybe a better theme song for today would be:

Meet an Author Monday

Whether your a reader or a writer, there’s a lot of great information and fun on the Hop. Check it out!

Meet an Author Monday

Click here for the Author hop

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