Hello, darlings. How are things?? I'm still giddy and hoarse, a result of being conference-lagged (a term I've newly coined). And by that I mean...well, as you might have guessed from the big, shiny photos of the unusually well-groomed authors below, I've just returned from the San Francisco RWA conference. Well, I say "just returned," but it was just downtown—it's not like I needed a passport to get there or anything, just a $1.50 for MUNI or a twenty for cab fare. But the conference is always like spending a week on another planet populated entirely by women, every single one of us wearing brand new shoes, every single one of us sporting about five flaming blisters a piece by the end of the week. This is a quick and incomplete pictorial of events, so far mostly courtesy of my buddy and Rita nominee Toni Blake, who has developed the highly useful habit of always having a camera.
Highlights were my incomparable agent Steve Axelrod's 25th Anniversary cocktail party, where I had a wonderful time talking to (but like a nimrod, did not have anyone take photos of me grinning with) some of my all-time favorite authors, including Jayne Anne Krentz, Susan Elizabeth Phillips, Julia Quinn and Christine Feehan; the Literacy Signing, where I met Diana! Our dear blogger friend Diana!! Yay!! (see the photo below of the two of us laughing hard -- you can see my molars and right up my nostrils); the presentation I did with Agent Steve on Thursday on Why Publishing is Making You Crazy—and What You Can Do About it, which was, according to feedback, both fun and a roaring success, much to our immense, immense relief; drinking margaritas and chowing on empanadas at the cocktail party introducing the new Avon website (it's going to rock), and trading fashion tips, admiring the polished toenails of, and exchanging body hair removal advice with the Avon/HarperCollins girls Julie Blattberg and Rachel (and we also, of course brainstormed brilliantly about how to sell millions of books); the fabulous lunch at Chez Papa Resto with a very entertaining group of authors hostessed by my charming and hilarious editor May Chen (after I first accidentally lead 12 some-odd authors in precisely the opposite direction of the restaurant for a few minutes); the Avon dinner at the Mandarin Hotel, which was delicious and lively and classy, a very generous evening, indeed, and where I thoroughly enjoyed meeting and chatting with Kerrelyn Sparks (on my left, and who was a bit alarmed at how fast this San Francisco girl talks) and local TV producer (KRON-4) Stacy Tiffin, who is a lot of fun and well-informed on a variety of very useful topics, including local media, movies, and Facebook games; meeting and hanging out with the lovely and very sharp and fun Kim Castillo, who is truly an Author's Best Friend; getting to see and hang out again with the always-foxy and hilarious Megan Crane, Michelle Rowen, Liza Palmer, Candice Hern, and many of my other author friends; and the Ritas!!
Toni was nominated for a Rita for her fabulous book Tempt Me Tonight! We sat in the front row of the auditorium during the ceremony, shivering from anticipation and aggressive air conditioning. Everyone looked GORGEOUS. She didn't take home a Rita, but now she joins the very esteemed ranks of those of us who have been nominated and who have departed the award auditorium sans statuettes. It's an exclusive club. :) (and a foxy one.)
Below we have a couple of photos of 1 and 2) me and Toni on Rita night; 3) a photo of me and Julianne Maclean at the Avon dinner (anyone with a "julie" in their name rocks, as far as I'm concerned); 4) me and Diana at the Literacy signing; 5) the funny and delightful Anna Campbell, Jenna Petersen, and me at the Avon dinner, taken by Sophia Nash (also funny and delightful, and in the throes of revisions during the conference); 6) Toni, me, two-time Golden heart winner Jackie Floyd and Lindsey Faber, the producer of the marvelously hilarious Rita Trash Talk video, on Rita night. I'll post more photos as they show up in my inbox. :)
And last but definitely not least: All About Romance tells me they're featuring me in their annual Favorite Books by Favorite Authors poll! Isn't that lovely? What an honor! Eleven other authors are part of it. I have to tell you, I never in my wildest dreams thought I'd be included in a poll with the likes of Jayne Anne Krentz. Click here <="link)<" romance="Romance">to vote for your favorite book written by moi up until August 15th.
<="link)<" romance="Romance">to vote for your favorite book written by moi up until August 15th.
Most importantly: How are you all???