I was able to score a few more pix from days one and two of RT, so I'll post them first, then the ones of day three. HUGE thanks to Ann Jacobs, Kate Douglas and Lillian Feisty for letting me post these!
Friday was absolutely INSANE with a capital "I". It started early, as I rushed down to the meeting place where a love shot was being taken for a local Houston television station. We were asked to appear in costume. It was starting early, and so I had to rush. As luck would have it, some poor woman stepped on my train as I was dashing down the hallway, ripping it from my gown. I cursed and continued running, clutching the side of my skirt and train, anxious to get there on time. What an ordeal!
Luckily, I was able to pin the train good enough to get through the interview. Yay! It was my first television interview, and I was terribly nervous. Thank goodness for Evan Scott (who happened to be on my very first book cover--Raphaela's Gift) and his wonderful wife, Tamara. They helped ease my frazzled nerves, and I was able to make it through the interview without stuttering too badly :)
Next, I hurried back up to my room to change into "normal" clothes for the Kensington breakfast mixer. That one was insane. This was my first year with a Kensington book, and I half expected to stand in a corner watching everyone oooh and ahhh over the better known authors.
Didn't happen. There was no standing in a corner. I think I ran out of books in the first five minutes. Poof gone. After that, I doled out dozens of postcards, all fifty of my Vampilicious makeup bags, and cover flats. The best part--I had the chance to chat with fellow Kensington authors Diane Whiteside, Sasha White, Sylvia Day and Rachelle Chase. Rachelle runs a writing contest called "Chase the Dream", which I'd entered back before I'd sold to Kensington.
Anyway, since I'm still very much a newbie to Kensington, I felt like the new kid trying to fit in. HUGE thanks to my fellow authors for being so warm and welcoming.
The rest of the day is kind of a blur (and no, that's not because I was loaded, LOL). I cheered for my friends who'd won RT awards (Judy Mays, Michelle M. Pillow--whoo hooo!), had headshots taken by our uber-talented and downright loveable EC staff, and then attended an editor and agent panel. Editors: Anne Groell, Chris Keeslar, Randall Toye, Megan Records, Monique Patterson, Gail Delaney and another editor from a second epublisher (can't remember her name). The agents: Scott Eagan, Miriam Kriss, Caren Johnson, Laura Bradford and Natasha Kern.
To sum up what I heard in the panel:
No one knows what the next "thing" will be. No one knows what they're looking for, until they actually see it. But they all want something that's fresh, original and stands out from the crowd. Paranormal is glutted right now, but almost all the agents and editors suggested authors read what they love and then look for a way to tweak what they've read to make it fresh and new. What is popular in our culture now and how can you bring that into a story? What is missing in what you see in the stores? Almost all the editors said they are interested in historicals but haven't read any really great ones lately. Monique emphasized she wants "really" books--really funny, really sexy, really suspenseful. And another (didn't note the name) said her mantra is Deeper, Darker, Madder. Finally, one agent suggested looking at what is popular in YA fiction for a hint of what will become popular in the future. Because of Harry Potter's success with kids of all ages, they're expecting fantasy to be very strong for years to come. We'll see if they're right.
After the panel, it was dinner and dancing at the Vampires of the Wild West. I have to say, Heather Graham knows how to throw a party. And her shows are absolutely hysterical. OMG. Some of the folks at my table were laughing so hard they were crying. And lucky me, I had a fangirl moment in the bathroom where I got to tell Heather how much I enjoyed the show. I won a second costume award--a signed copy of Heather's hardcover release, The Dead Room. Squee!!!
Once again, I dragged my weary bod up to my room sometime after 2:00am and fell into bed.
More pictures coming. Just need to download them from my camera...
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