In between workshops and (possibly) breaking delicate body parts, there was everything else.
And this constituted a lot of socializing, eating, drinking, and dressing up. Yeah. It was awesome.
Let me clarify...
Being my first RWA nationals conference and Shelley's second, we wanted to check out a lot of what was offered. And since neither of us are published (preferring the title "PREpublished" instead of "UNpublished" because of the more positive connotations), there were certain things that we naturally wouldn't get invited to, but might possibly attend in the future. Example: one of the publishers held a black-and-white ball at the Waldorf Astoria. Yeah, that place in the picture. I'm still jealous, and it's been nearly a month. If we published with that particular publisher, then we'd be invited.
The same goes for belonging to other chapters or specialty chapters of the RWA. Example: the Fantasy, Futuristic & Paranormal (FF&P) chapter held a party where the party-goers wore super-hero (or super-heroine) costumes. Passionate Ink held one where a lot of dominatrix gear was worn. I'm not sure what it was for, but it made for some interesting people-watching, I'll tell you that.
|Not too many looked like Angelina, but who cared! It looked like a fun party!|
So, we attended events that were open to all, such as a fun PJ party that Harlequin was throwing one night. Sadly, neither of us brought PJ's we wanted to wear out of the room, so we just wore regular clothes. It was a fun night, and we met a lot of wonderful people!
Shelley and I also enjoyed the Atrium Lounge, where we were often joined by other writers and people we met along the way. It was a great way to network, and I think I gave out more of my cards this way than through any other socializing I did at the whole conference. It was great to meet other authors who were letting their hair down after a nice long day of workshops. Conversations ranged from talking about the workshops we'd attended, to what our books were about, to where we were from and more. I even had a chance to meet a couple that I'd met on Twitter. That's kind of a surreal experience, meeting someone you've met only online, but I had a lot of that going on on this trip.
The luncheons, of which there were two, were good as well. The food was definitely good for the staff having to feed 2,000+ people, and the speakers were motivating, especially Sherrilyn Kenyon, who is a well-known author of many paranormal and fantasy romance novels.
|Yeah. She's that awesome.|
The RITA and Golden Hearts ceremony which was held on the final night (Friday), was pretty interesting. Normally I can't stand awards ceremonies. They're boring, and the people who win go on and on and on and no one will shut them up, yadda yadda yadda. But, I quickly discovered that if you get a bunch of writers in one spot, even if they suck at public speaking, the speeches will be interesting. Because we're writers, bitches. We can come up with something appropriate, be it short-and-sweet or funny and amazing at the drop of a hat. Meg Cabot, the lovely writer of many novels, including The Princess Diaries, and who was wearing glasses at the ceremony and looked uncannily like Tina Fey, was the MC and hilarious. I officially add her to my growing list of people I want to be when I grow up.
Additionally, we ate mass quantities of cheesecake at Junior's, which was right across the street from the Marriott Marquis. I'm surprised I didn't gain a ton of weight on the trip, because the cheesecake was to die for.
I will end with a picture that will make you run to your refrigerator and sob because this is not in there on a shelf.
|Junior's Devil's Food Cheesecake. The white layer is regular cheesecake and the other parts are regular chocolate cake and thick chocolate frosting. This was in my tummy. You're welcome for the jealousy.|