Visiting the San Diego RWA

Barbara Vey -- September 19th, 2011

I thought I was being adventurous when I booked my flight to Los Angeles and was going to take a train to San Diego.  The website makes it look like the train station is right there, but after flying from Florida to Atlanta to Los Angeles, I had to take a 45 minute bus ride to the train station.  Not a pleasant experience when you have motion sickness.  Luckily, moments before I really embarrassed myself, I was at the train station for the 3 hours train ride to San Diego (beautiful view of the ocean from the train).  Then the next day I did it backwards to go home.  But it was worth it to visit with the San Diego RWA writers.

 

Jeannie Lin

Jeannie Lin

They brought me in for a one day workshop, but it really started Friday night with desserts at author Cori Owens-Mendez’s house.  From the peach cobbler to brownies to the creme brulee pie, they made me feel at home and one of the group.

 

At their Saturday meetings, they do a full day program so I got to share the stage with the amazing Jeannie Lin who talked about the importance of the first 5 pages of a book.   If you haven’t read Butterfly Swords yet, do yourself a favor and try it because Jeannie’s second book, The Dragon and the Pearl,  comes out Tuesday (but she gave me a copy at the meeting that I can’t wait to dive into).  BTW, in case you didn’t know, Jeannie is pregnant with twins!!  Congratulations Jeannie!

 

back row:   Bob Richard, Pam Moran and Suzanne Barris   Front row:   Melissa Cutler, Tami Vahalik, and Janet Tait

back row: Bob Richard, Pam Moran and Suzanne Barris Front row: Melissa Cutler, Tami Vahalik, and Janet Tait

This large chapter has so many active members that awards were being given out like candy.  They can earn a charm bracelet and charms for completing various tasks like sending in a manuscript, finaling in contest and signing a contract.  These members were recognized for hitting the halfway mark on the chapter’s Writing Challenge to complete a new novel in 6 months.  Of that group a few have already completed the book! They all received roses.  There was also a booksigning and with such a large group, a lot of good books to choose from.

 

Due to popular demand...first close up of Jeannie Lin's baby bump

Due to popular demand...first close up of Jeannie Lin's baby bump

.\

,

After a healthy (and delicious) shrimp salad lunch, I was up.  While I like to think ahead about the subject I’ll be talking about, I pretty much just ad lib it.  I know it’s a gift, but I must have been an actor in a past life.  I’m such a strong believer in building reader loyalty, that I can pretty much just say how I feel as a reader.  I also have talked with a lot of readers who share their thoughts about books and authors with me.  One subject that always comes up is social media.  What to do, how to do it and is it necessary.  Sharing stories with the group and having them relate their experiences made for a lively discussion.  I think I left feeling more energized than they did.

 

The chapter announced that they will be sponsoring their first conference in 2013 and have invited me back.  Next time I’m flying in direct.

 

Bottom Line:  My favorite compliment of the day:  “I just loved your workshop.  I usually get tired after lunch, but I stayed awake for your whole talk.”

 

Monday Giveaways

 

From authors Sherrilyn Kenyon and Dianna Love:  To celebrate the release ALTERANT next week, they are giving away an exclusive Belador short story – FIRE BOUND.  All you have to do to download the story is click here.

From Belle Bridge Books:  Free on Kindle for 4 days starting Sept. 21:
THE MANICURIST, Phyllis Schieber
PRAISE JERUSALEM!, Augusta Trobaugh

From author Mia Marlow: Mia Marlowe is offering her novella A DUKE FOR ALL SEASONS as a free download at Smashwords. This story started as a serialized novella on her website in Jan 2010. It’s available FREE now at Smashwords.

96 thoughts on “Visiting the San Diego RWA

  1. Lisa Kessler

    Thanks again for coming out west to speak at our meeting Barbara!!!

    It was great seeing you and you were full of great information!!!

    Can’t wait to have you back for our conference in March of 2013!!!

    Lisa :)

  2. Judy Duarte

    Barbara,

    You definitely have a gift for speaking off the cuff! I really enjoyed having you in San Diego and hearing you talk.

    Jeannie Lin was great, too. Thanks to both of you for making our meeting day special.

    Best,

    Judy

  3. MA Taylor

    Barbara loved your presentation. You told us exactly what we needed to hear. Thank-you.

    Jeannie’s presentation was exceptional and timely.

    Thank-you both for sharing your knowledge and time.

    Margaret

  4. Pam Moran

    Barbara, you definitely rocked it! So exciting you’re going to come back in 2013, we’re all looking forward to that. I know several attendees at Saturday’s meeting spent a part of yesterday working on FaceBook profiles and twitter updates (I even did a tweet … which is something that feels extremely foreign to me).

    Pam

  5. Melissa Cutler

    Barbara,

    What a pleasure it was to get to know you over dessert on Friday, then at the Saturday meeting. Your message of being genuine, supportive, and respectful, both to fans and other writers, was refreshing. Thank you for making the arduous journey to speak with us. I look forward to our next meeting.

    Melissa

  6. Jannine Corti Petska

    Barbara, it was a pleasure to finally meet you. You didn’t disappoint. I loved everything about your workshop and came away with new ideas for social media. Thanks for going through all the travel trouble to get to San Diego. But, yeah, next time take a direct flight, lol.

    Jeannie Lin: I loved talking with you during the booksigning. Your workshop was awesome. Good luck with your pregnancy and your twins.

    Thanks, ladies!

  7. Kristen Koster (Kaige)

    I’m so happy I joined this chapter! Such great people who are the embodiment of encouragement. I really enjoyed your talk and took away several things from it, Barbara!

    Your topic of reader loyalty was a perfect balance to Jeannie Lin’s talk about keeping editors and agents reading your mss. Something for everyone in the chapter this month!

  8. Karen J. Ritter

    Barbara,
    Ditto from me regarding your visit to SDRWA. You were very fun and made me laugh. Not to mention your info was much appreciated.
    Thanks for coming!

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