I checked in early to the Wisconsin Romance Writers Conference because I love meeting people when they first come in. Everyone is so happy to be there among their own kind. Families do not always understand the connection that authors/editors/agents have with books. There’s just some kind of magic that happens when they all get together and speak a language all their own. Almost like a family reunion…just a different kind of family.
Lucky for me I ran into Amy because I totally forgot my make-up. Not that I wear a lot, but enough that I don’t look like a ghost on pictures. So Amy ran me to Walgreens which was just a block away (and really, isn’t there a Walgreens on almost every corner?). Once we got in there, it didn’t stop with the make-up. I forgot my curling iron (on sale for $7.99) and a travel hair spray and deodorant (and you can never have too much deodorant). Then we found we need a 12 pack of Diet Coke because, I’m sorry, but 2 bucks for a 12 ounce can is way beyond my sensibilities and besides, there’s a refridgerator in my suite (along with a microwave). I think I’ll just move in here, especially with the maid service.
Once we got back to the hotel, I caught up with conference speaker Cathy Maxwell and Avon Editor Tessa Woodward. We ran over to Champs (a sports bar/restaurant) and bonded over books, baseball and blogs.
The agent/editor panel was packed as they were grilled about all things publishing. Harlequin SuperRomance Editor Victoria Curran said the only thing she didn’t want to see was the death of a kitten or puppy and feels chick lit is dead. Natalie Fischer of the Sandra Dykstra Literary Agency, on the other hand, feels that chick lit is grown up and in their 30′s. Looking for paranormal and fun, new contemporary, especially with a home town feel is Tessa Woodward of Avon. Scott Egan of the Greyhaus Literary Agency is not a fan of angels and demons when they are just remakes of vampires and werewolves. He’s looking for something unique and different and says contemporaries are not dead. The most questions revolved around e-books and how they are affecting the market. The consensus was that e-books are great, but regular books will be around for a long time.
Afterward, it was time for the Dessert Reception. Kilt clad ambassadors sold raffle tickets and posed for pictures. Scotland native Ian Day entertained the crowd with several Scottish songs. Once again, I didn’t win a basket, but they are giving away more tomorrow. I can always hope.
Bottom Line: With all the money I’ve spent on raffle tickets, I could have bought all the things in the baskets by now…but then again, the money does go to charity.