So, I’m still fairly new to this whole “blogging” business, but I’m working on it. Trying to get myself out there, I suppose (although there are many who would argue that I was pretty far out there to start).
I recently returned from the Emerald City Writer’s Conference (ECWC), and it was wonderful, amazing… and intense. I met some great people while I was there, and I hope to stay in touch with them–it was so nice to connect with other writers! Everyone was so kind and supportive. At my very first event, I met Norma, who, when she pitched her story to me, sounded so confident that I was immediately convinced her manuscript must be awesome… and when she asked me about mine, I conveniently vapor-locked. I sat there, thinking desperately, “Oh crap, oh crap, someone wants to know what my book’s about and I… don’t know.” All of this after I’d spent almost five hours practicing my pitch in the car. And writing it out. And making the husband listen to it over and over and over again…
Speaking of, in typical fashion, every woman I talked to thought my husband was the best thing since sliced bread. I sometimes forget how charming that man can be… Could it be that he’s like poison: after enough exposure, you’re (relatively) immune? I wonder. In any case, it was more than once that some woman would ask: “Or, you’re married to him. Yeah, if you don’t want him, someone here will have him!” And I had to laugh, because, by the time we were getting ready to leave on Sunday, I think he was fairly well convinced that he’s the hero of a romance novel. If we had stayed longer, would he have been tossing his hair like Fabio, some buxom woman in a half torn bodice clutching at his shoulders while the sea churns behind them and the wind tussles his flowing locks?
Sad thing is, I think I gave him the idea. I’m the one who told him that he’s the perfect hero: charming, aggressive, and a cop… What more could a writer of romance novels ask for? It would be so much more convenient if I wrote romantic suspense, but no, I harbor fantasies of vampires and demons… and the occasional cowboy (but not so big on the cowboys in real life; after all, they deal with cows, and anyone who knows me knows I don’t like cows. Moo).
In any case, I’ve completely gone off topic. That last Sunday of the conference, my husband–as part of the package he got for me to attend the conference–had arranged for me to have coffee with Brenda Novak, which turned into breakfast with all three of us. She was gracious and kind, politely listened to me (and the husband) ramble on about what was intensely exciting for us, but probably old hat for her. I think I held my own–I didn’t throw up (shocking!), managed to string more than two words together in a few relatively coherent sentences, and didn’t spend the entire time obsessing about the giant zit that had appeared on the end of my nose the first day of the conference. And I’m telling you, this thing was HUGE. Not only that, but my entire nose had flamed up to a shade only slightly more subtle than crimson and was a little swollen. Sitting on the tip of all that beauty, like a large, white light bulb, was this immense pimple that no amount of coaxing could get to pop (it was probably all of the attempts that had turned my nose scarlet in the first place). I was Rudolph. The day that I pitched my book to the editors and agents, I must have reapplied my make-up five times. Strangely, said pimple was almost entirely gone by the time I got off the airplane three hours later. Hmm. I wonder if I was stressed?
Overall, the conference was great. I had the opportunity to meet up with an old friend, make new ones, learned a thing or two, and got a couple of requests for my manuscript. And had coffee with a woman who has achieved what I one day hope to: to be a successful, published author. I can only hope that, if I make it that far, I’m as gracious and warm as she is.