Happy Wednesday All,
Whew! Things have been extremely busy on my end (but mostly GOOD busy). Monday was my birthday, and it was a wonderful birthday--thank you to everyone who wished me Happy Birthday. I truly appreciated the thoughtfulness!
Before I launch into talking about the Lone Star Conference, I want to tell you I did a stupid thing. I forgot my camera! Can you believe it? I was so bummed. So unfortunately, I don't have pictures (color me sad) but others had photos and I have many witnesses to say I was, in fact, there. Hopefully the next time I go to the Lone Star Conference I'll remember a camera.
So here's a run-down of my experience...
Friday was the Meet & Greet party at the 1st V.P. of my chapter's house. As always, Stacey is a wonderful hostess (her husband minion-ed with the best of them) and it had good food, good company, and good fun.
A bunch of us gave James Scott Bell a tutorial on how to talk like a Texan, and he picked up very quickly. In fact, at the end of the evening he even said "I'll see all y'all tomorrow!" He gained much applause and cheers for that.
I rode to and from the hotel with two of my chapter mates, and a lovely lady from another part of Texas and we had a great time. Although, I have to say, there was someone in another car (not a Conference go-er from what we could tell) who scared us so bad. Luckily my chapter mate who was driving had quick reflexes and kept us save (you rock, Patti!)
The next day dawned bright and early for me (I was up at 6 a.m.) and got ready and down to the ballroom to settle in by 8 a.m. NWHRWA President and the 1st V.P. welcomed everybody and Mr. Bell got started.
I was timing pitches first thing in the morning, so I went off to the room to time for editor, Deborah Gilbert of Soul Mate Publishing. She and I had some lovely chats and I think she's such a nice lady. Several of my chapter mates have signed with Soul Mate, and seem to be very happy there.
Later on, I was hanging out with some other chapter mates of mine who were timing and wandered into the ballroom to listen to Mr. Bell.
Let me tell you, fellow writers of mine (and even some of those readers who don't write), Mr. Bell is one heck of a speaker. He is absolutely, hands-down, one of the best. Even if you miss part of his talk, you can pick it right back up again without being too lost. He uses clips from movies to illustrate the points he's making (which helps a lot with applying what he's teaching) and he's funny, fun, and gets the crowd involved. There was a lot of laughter and applause when he threw in Southern-isms like "y'all" and "fixin' to" and such like that.
Mr. Bell is also very approachable and easy to talk to. He's friendly, and interested in what you have to say. Plus, you can ask him questions on what he talks about without fear.
Lunch was a buffet style (which it has been in the past) and I was at a big table with some of my chapter mates, a few other conference goers, and the lovely folks from Boroughs Publishing Group. The people from Boroughs were extremely nice, and readily willing to answer any questions we had. One of them also took practice pitches from Conference goers who weren't sure about doing a real pitch. They were also lovely. Everyone seemed to like them.
In the afternoon I got to talk with Liz Pelletier from Entangled Publishing, and she was a delight. Extremely helpful and very nice.
I also got to talk with Elaine Spencer from the Knight Agency, and I liked her quite a bit, too. I had asked her some questions at the Meet & Greet and she was extremely helpful.
All in all, this year's conference really rocked. Next year we're scheduled to have another awesome speaker...who was revealed at Conference (whom I will reveal at a later date on here). Trust me, you won't want to ever miss an NWHRWA Conference. They are truly awesome.
Hope everyone had a wonderful weekend this past weekend, and is having a glorious week!
Have A Whimsical Wednesday!