Monday, July 10, 2006

Back from the RNA conference

The RNA conference was held on the very lovely campus of Newton Rigg near Penrith.
My dh drove me over, and we were able to stop at the Village bakery for lunch, arriving in good time for the conference's start.
It was wonderful to see so many old friends and to make the acquaintance of many new and interesting people.
Both my editors were there and I had a lovely time chatting to them. I was also feeling smug as VW was sitting in my editor's inbox with no way for her to look at it. Thus the pressure was off for me and I could soak up the atmosphere.
The first day was devoted to celebrations and to a saga panel. Nell Dixon swears she will not sit next to me again as we both nearly got a fit of giggles when a saga writer made several unfortunate remarks about M&B. Seeing Nell and Allison and having them stay in the same block as me was one of the joys of the conference. Nell has promised me a medical romance, and I am holding her to it.
I was aso finally able to meet Kate Walker's twin or rather partner in crime -- Michelle Ried. A thoroughly lovely woman.
The lass said about dinner the better. I am not mentioning about the bar afterwards as others may do so.
Saturday started with Kate Allan's very interesting workshop on marketing. There was a bit about Both Nell and Kate are quite keen, but is it one more thing? Then there was the HM&B workshop on emotional conflict. Very interesting and well presented. My editor put up a large poster of GH as well as poster of Julie Cohen's Delicious and one of the new covers for the Romance line -- such an improvement.
Kate Fenton was the keynote speaker on romantic comedy. I must find her books. I need to read this woman's books as they sound a thoroughly good read.
Lunch with fellow M&B historical authorJune Francis, HM&B Romance author Jessica Hart and NAL author Amanda Ashby. I am so looking forward to Amanda's book, You Had Me at the Halo. It sounds fantastic. We shall draw a veil over Jessica, Amanda and I stopping outside open windows and getting shush. My only defense is that I didn't realize where we were.
I went to Sue Johnson's workshop on banishing the curse of writer's block and found several useful tips. It is good to know that many people suffer from the same things as I do.
After tea, Penny Jordan spoke about her career and the way she works. Penny is an amazing woman. She has been a firm favourite for a long time.
Dinner was sit down and lovely. I was able to sit with friends and spent a thoroughly enjoyable evening -- even if Michelle Ried claims I could talk for England and America combined. Afterwards, back in Kate Walker's kitchen -- I shall draw a veil over, but I understand there may be photos.
In the morning, I attend Jessica' hart's enjoyable A to Z Writer's survival guide. Generally when in doubt -- drink or take a bath. She did make the point that sometimes -- good enough is okay. However, I suspect her good enough is somewhat better than me, and so I shall keep trying.
NIcola Cornick led a friendly and informative NWS session. There are exactly 250 NWS places. For the last three years, the places have closed in May, so if anyone is interested in pursuing this valuable scheme, apply for RNA provisional membership in January time.
Then there was the welcome news of the RNA PR campaign and how it is going.
Lunch and I don't think I disgraced myself.
Then I spent a little time preparing my workshop once again and finally I gave it. I am quite happy to send the notes off to anyone who did not see the workshop. My editor did say that I covered the bases correctly, but she may have been being kind!
At last home, and after a lovely supper I was sent to bed as I overtired.


Anonymous said...

Sounds as if you had a wonderful time. Wish I'd been there...

Anonymous said...

I agree with Kate, wish I had been there. Will be next year though. What was the gala dinner like? What did you eat?

Anonymous said...

Glad you had such a good time! Would love to see some pictures if you have them. ;)

Amanda Ashby said...

Michelle. Thank goodness for veils! But it was quite funny! And now, because I'm very obedient, I'm off to look for some local honey to sort out my sore throat.

Kate Allan said...

Great to see you at the conference and sorry for not having the chance for a long chat because I was being a bit spaced out. x