Wednesday, August 24, 2016

RWA Conference Report

Glenelg, South Australia, before the Jetty
I went to the RWA Conference.

I'm pleased to say that I enjoyed myself. I did conference a little differently this time - I didn't stay in the venue but a short walk away, I got outside, I didn't have majorly late nights talking to everyone, and I didn't have high expectations. These changes worked for me!!!!

View from the Jetty - the conference hotel is on the right
Adelaide is my favourite city in Australia, and Glenelg is gorgeous. The Stamford Grand is functional elegance and a fantastic location for a conference. I enjoyed the venue and location a lot. Great food nearby. Lots of space around. Short walk to shops, tram, beach, fresh air, parks, other motels. Just a great spot to be.

My conference highlights were:
  • Listening to Keri Arthur's talk. She's one of my favourite authors and Dad and I fight over who reads her new book first. Her talk was so honest, that it gave me a new look at the industry. She's a big name, NY Times best seller, and yet she has hassles. She struggles to know what's the right thing. She gets messed about. She has to stand up for what she believes is right, even when it costs financially. On the outside, her career looks like smooth sailing - it was refreshing to hear that no matter where or who you are, not everything is smooth sailing.
  • Daniel DeLorne gave another honest, open talk about gay males. I really enjoyed his light humour, his openness, honestly and the refreshingly normal way he spoke about sex. There isn't a lot at conference targetted for the erotic author, so this was great!
  • There was an Academic Conference stream and I LOVED IT! I loved being challenged to think about what we read and write. I loved the depth and breadth of the views expressed. This is the second academic conference held as part of RWA and I hope it continues. It makes the conference for me.
  • Catching up with fellow Naughty Ninjas, Lily Malone and Sandra Antonelli. I was so lucky to be talking to Lily when Sue brought Lily's new book to give to her. It was Lily's first look and it was such a privilege to be there. And Sandra presented the work from her PhD at the Academic Conference, which is fab!
    Lily, her new book, with Sue Brockhoff from Harlequin Mira
    Lily and me

Sandra and me

Some of my personal 'funny' moments were -
  • Running 'home' in the pouring rain, heels in hand, after the Harlequin Author Party. The ground was slippery (great excuse, hey?) and I felt all of 16 and sneaking home late :)
  • Taking a great sunset shot under the jetty, all dressed up, thinking I wouldn't get wet - and of course I did! My boots filled with water, my good trousers were soaked to the knee. Luckily it was after my publisher meeting! I do need to grow up, but there's no fun in that :)
View under the jetty - at sensible low tide

View under the jetty - at high tide, when you might just get your feet wet (or your legs!)
I still have problems with my attendance at conference. I find so many people are all about themselves - that's all they want to talk about, how great they are. I find a lot of people have different views to me about the publishing business, and I struggle with that. There are entirely too many people and it's much too noisy!! (I'm such a hermit!). There's too many options - at one stage I wanted to be in 3 places at once. It's still expensive. And erotic authors are generally not catered for - but I suppose that can be said about a lot of sub-genres. It just gets on my goat when people talk to me and acknowledge one type of my writing, yet this side of me is 'just sex' - as if I don't craft a story with as much care and diligence.

But, all up, I'd go again. I'd do the more casual approach again too. So far, I'm tired but I'm not sick and out on my feet like in 2014. I might finally be working it out :)

1 comment:

  1. I had a great time at Conference - but I had nothing to compare it to - as I've never been. As you know part of it for me was made just on the pure 'holiday' aspect of arriving at a hotel and having a room all to MYSELF and being kid and hubby-free for 3 WHOLE DAYS! I could have stayed in that room and eaten all the chocolates and I would have felt I got my money's worth.
    I liked Michael Hauge's workshop best, and then Sandra & Dr Shrinkee's talk on Saturday. I enjoyed the 'write like the world's best selling author' presentation on Sunday morning and I loved all the social events: harlequin party, cocktail party, gala ball. And also of course, SO GREAT to get my book like that from Sue - and how cool that you were right there! I love that photo you took. :)
    Loved seeing and being there with great friends, Jennie J, Juanita, lovely you, seeing and actually cornering Ainslie Paton for a good old chat. Meeting Tess Woods for the first time in person... lots of great times for me.
    Don't know if that means I can go to Brisbane but I definitely loved Adelaide. Flying into Adelaide felt like 'flying home'.
    xx Hugs and thanks for the photos and the wrap-up, I loved this post!