Sunday, May 18, 2014

#RT2014 Meeting My Fellow Spanking Writers

What a week! I left last Tuesday for New Orleans and Romance Times Convention 2014, commonly referred to as RT2014. This was my first convention and it was quite an experience. I'll probably write a few more posts just to keep my thoughts a bit more organized. I arrived in NOLA (that's what people in the know call New Orleans, Louisiana) excited and nervous. I had plans to meet up with (and spend significant time, hopefully) with Cara Bristol, Sue Lyndon and Alta Hensley, as well as a few others who I knew would be there.

So, what's it like to "meet" someone with whom you've emailed, blogged and written anthologies...but never spoken to or seen in person. Logically, I knew they had to be nice people and that we'd get along, but still, I wondered...will they like me? Will I talk too much (the answer to that is always yes)? Am I wearing the right clothes?

You know...like a blind date.

I arrived at my hotel and rested a bit before the big meet up. I had been shopping quite a bit (at least by my standards) to assure the appropriate clothing for the festivities. Tuesday night was to be dinner at Saints and Sinners with the folks from Blushing Books, incluidng Bethany Burke (owner), her staff members Joey and Allison and assorted writers, but more on that later. I had a nice white cotton blouse with some lacey sort of cut outs which I wore as a jacket over black pants and a black top. Pretty basic, but I thought it looked nice.

When I'd tried the blouse/jacket on at home it had sometimes felt a bit tight in the arms, but I twisted and pulled and it worked out. It seemed odd that the tag was in the front, near the buttons, but I assumed that was because it would look funny sticking out of the lacey detail in the back. As I checked myself out in the mirror before heading off to wow my new friends, I noticed an odd detail in the back...darts.

Yes, I was wearing my "jacket" backwards. But in my defense---who'd wear a blouse that buttons down the back?

I considered changing, but by then my fashion sense was depleted and so I went with my usual life plan of "Oh, what the hell" and ventured out in my reversed-wear to impress my fellow writers and all of Bourbon Street.

Sue Lyndon texted that she'd arrived and was waiting to check-in. I stood near the check-in line and texted "wave, so I know who you are", a sort of frightened looking woman in a cute dress turned and looked around. She probably noticed my backward clothing, but still waved, so we nervously hugged and said hello.

This may come as a surprise, but when I'm nervous, I talk even more. Neat.

Next, I left Sue to finish checking in and went to Cara Bristol's room. When she let me in I jabbered and explained the backward jacket and who knows what else I said. I suspect it might have been a bit much, but well, I don't get out much.

Cara was lovely and gracious and did not jabber at all.

Eventually we all met up in the lobby, including Alta Hensley, and ventured out to Bourbon Street and Saints and Sinners, where we had dinner with Bethany Burke, Joey and Allison of Blushing Books, Paige Tyler and her husband, Maren Smith, her two sisters and her father (they dumped us for a Ghost Tour. I wondered if it was due to my backward clothing...), Isabella Kole and her assistant.

With such a large group it was tricky to talk to everyone, but it was nice to put faces with names.

The only other thing I remember from that night is that Alta Hensely attracts weirdos on the street.

More tomorrow.

24 comments:

  1. The darts were meant to frame your perfect shoulder blades. It's great that you had such a good time. I'm looking forward to reading more about your NOLA adventures. I hope to meet up with folks next year in Dallas.

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    1. Of course they were for the shoulder blades!

      Trish...I'm actually not sure that RT is the best venue for spanking writers and will probably write a post about that. It was a great experience and I'm glad I went, but I doubt if I'll go to Dallas (of course, a lot can happen in a year). Maybe I'll write that post now.

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  2. I'm so glad you got to go and meet all these wonderful folks. That would really be fun, but I wish someone would put together something for spanking writers specifically. I'm sure you look great what ever way the jacket was supposed to be worn. But just thinking of even trying to 'dress to impress' scares the heck out of me.

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    1. Thanks PK! If you were to go to an event for spanking writers would you like to go to workshops or just be more social and with time for visiting?

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    2. I guess what I'd like the most was time to be social and visit, but I would like some type of workshop or at least an official chance to pick everyone brain.

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  3. Sounds like you had great fun. Would love to get together with other spanking writers. Did I hear that next year's convention is in Dallas. Can anyone go?

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    1. Yes to both questions. However, in my post tomorrow I discuss whether it is worth it for spanking writers to go to this convention or not. It's fun for everyone to meet, but I'm not sure about whether it helps us meet more readers or book buyers. Let's see what others have to say.

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  4. Gosh it sounds like fun to meet everyone! I would have worn clothes inside- out accidentally too! And talked way too much as well!

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  5. I would have gone just to meet you all. It sounds like great fun.

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  6. I think you'd gotten over nervous by the time we met because you were perfectly charming :)

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  7. Interesting that you thought RT wasn't the best venue for spanking writers. I always thought the readers and authors attending RT were easy going and fun, and just about anything was accepted and encouraged. I love hearing about your meeting up with everyone, and look forward to reading more about your experience. Great job.

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    1. Everyone was friendly and accepting, so you're right about that. My point is simply that if I wanted to increase my readership, I'm not sure being amongst hundreds (or thousands) of other romance writers was the way to do it. Sue Lyndon and Cara Bristol did the book fair for readers on Saturday so I'm curious to see what they thought of that.

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  8. That is hilarious! Can we have a pic of the backwards outfit? I understand about fashion sense being depleted and also about talking too much when you're nervous and it IS like a first date! I think some people are just better than others at hiding their nervousness. Sounds like fun and I am looking forward to more posts!!

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    1. I might have to do a re-creation of the backward clothes. At leat my pants were on properly. :)

      It was very fun and I'm glad I went.

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  9. I'm sure your backwards blouse looked fabulous! It is weird meeting people you have only talked to online. I am a nervous talker too, and a nervous laugher, which I am sure gets real annoying.
    I am interested to hear your thoughts on whether it was worth going!

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    1. I hope we writers who would like to meet up at some point can come up with a plan that seems beneficial to everyone. We'll need a first event for everyone to get over their nervous jabber and laughter and then the next day relax and enjoy ourselves!

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  10. I never would have known your jacket was backwards if you hadn't said something. And it looked perfectly fine backwards anyway. I really enjoyed meeting and talking with you. It was one of the highlights of the conference for me.

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    1. I think I'm just very fashion forward (sorry for the pun).

      Meeting you was a highlight for me too. Absolutely wonderful!

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  11. I sort of wondered how the writers of "spanking romance" would be viewed by the larger romance community. What exactly do you tell people? How do you describe your genre? What was the reaction? I mean I've always thought that the genre popularized by publishers like Blushing Books might be seen as a sort of red headed step child. Nobody in the family is quite sure what she's doing at the family BBQ. Is that the case?

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    1. I openly told everyone I wrote spanking romance and no one treated me like the red headed step child. I don't think any of the other spanking authors ran into that either. It was a very accepting atmosphere.

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  12. I typically don't notice wardrobe malfunctions unless a nipple is involved. LOL I wouldn't have noticed your jacket! :)

    Meeting everyone (especially the spanking authors!!!) was so much fun. I can't wait until the next time.

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  13. I think you teased us with your promise of a wardrobe malfunction. I was expecting at least a nip slip. Clothes on backwards? Pah. Is nothing.

    Oh and THANK YOU for including what RT stands for in your post. I was googling this yesterday and NO-ONE WOULD TELL ME. Not even the RT2014 website.

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  14. Everyone was friendly and accepting and I don't mean to imply that they weren't. I just wonder if RT is the only place where we can get together and meet readers too.

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