Day Two (Wednesday for me) began quite early when I and my roomies had to leave our overflow hotel and return to the conference hotel by 8AM. We made it, stashed our luggage in friends' rooms, and I took off for breakfast with the Harlequin Presents authors. It was my first time meeting several of them. I knew Jennie Lucas and Kate Walker, but met Janette Kenny, Sandra Marton, and Sharon Kendrick for the first time. I also met editors Tessa Shapcott and Sheila Hodgson. We had a great time talking and eating, and I immediately felt comfortable and welcome (and yes, even a bit starstruck — Sandra Marton and Sharon Kendrick! I knew Kate Walker already, so wasn't as apprehensive, but wow, talk about Presents royalty, yes?).
After breakfast, the ladies adjourned to tour DC, but I had a workshop to prepare for. Kimberly Lang, Linda Howard, Linda Winstead Jones and I gave a talk at the Chapter Leadership Seminar about rescuing your RWA chapter and making it fabulous. Let's just say that shoes were a part of our program. 🙂 No, shoes have nothing to do with rescuing your chapter, but they do have everything to do with our obsession at the Heart of Dixie RWA. We do everything in fabulous shoes when at all possible.
The big event of the day, however, was the Literacy Autographing that began at 5:30. After a very quick trip to see some of my Pixie Chick sisters in Harry's Pub, I headed for the exhibit hall with my box of 15 books, bookmarks, autograph stickers, and some Hershey's kisses. I've been to the autographing before, but never as a published author. Because my book isn't available in stores yet, I had to take my own copies (hence the 15). I found my table, got set up, and prepared for a lot of sitting and smiling and maybe selling 2 or 3 books.
Beside me was the fabulous C.S. Harris, who was nominated for a RITA. I tried not to be fan girl, but she was wonderful and I couldn't help but gush about her historical romances written as Candice Proctor. She was very gracious about it. One of the big pluses about the signing was seeing old friends. Here is a photo of me with Alison Cunliffe, who I've known for about 15 years now and once toured through Germany and Austria with.
The signing lasted for 2 hours. It was noisy and busy, and yet there were many times when I simply sat and talked to the writers on either side of me. Yet somehow I managed to sell all 15 books. I was quite surprised about this, especially since only about 5 of them were to friends. There were also two ladies who simply wanted my picture. I'm not sure why, but I smiled and gladly let them take it. By the end of the signing, I was ready for the next phase — party with the Presents authors. I didn't get any photos of that, but we ended up in the lobby bar for burgers and drinks. It was quite fun.
I can't remember when I crashed into bed, but I'm guessing it was around midnight. Here's me at the signing. Tomorrow, my Day Three report. 🙂