Kudos to our own Penny Watson for getting her romantic Christmas paranormal published! So exciting. Another Quirky Lady under contract! This is definitely appletini celebration worthy. And Penny, I promise not to post those cell phone pics of you dirty dancing at the NEC conference on our blog....Really. You sure know how to celebrate and you deserved to! Good job and congratulations! We are so proud of you.
Another round of applause goes out to one more Quirky Lady, Tara Holt, chairwoman of this year's awesome NEC Conference, Let Your Imagination Take Flight. Great job, Tara! Wonderful speakers, workshops, and overall seamless organization of the event. So now you need to kick back and relax with an appletini to toast your success. Thanks go to you and the other conference committee members for a job well done. Congrats!!!
I have always enjoyed attending writer's conferences. Besides the workshops, the networking, and bonding with friends, it's so exciting to see and hear published authors speak and share their stories. To hear Eloise James, Lisa Scottoline, Susan Wiggs, Lisa Gardner, Suzanne Brockmann, and just recently Jennifer Greene and Jessica Andersen share their journey to publication is inspiring and uplifting. As they recount the bumps and curves taken along the route, they remind us that once upon a time, they've trudged the same path as us. Many of their stories make me laugh, most encourage me, a few make me teary-eyed (Sherrilyn Kenyon), but all of their stories give me hope. After listening to their triumphs, rejections (yes, even they've received them), and animal analogies (Jessica Andersen -- too funny), I always return home ready and revved to write again.
Another part of attending conferences is that if you're lucky and you've pitched to an agent or an editor at the conference, you might return home with the right to dream that your contract is within reach -- once you mail in your requested material. I love that promise. This year I met with an agent. Before I had a chance to give my nerve wracking eight-minute pitch, she asked me, "Now what can I do for you?" Oh, so many answers there.... But mostly, when I pitch my book, I simply am looking for the chance to keep my dream alive. And by simply meeting with me and requesting a partial, this agent fulfilled this desire.
That's what a good writing conference delivers -- the gift of hope.