authorsI’ve had one of the best weekends in a while, spending it with 200 plus romance authors at the SoCal RWA Conference in sunny Santa Ana, California!

You might wonder what happens when you get this many women (and a few brave men) together for a weekend conference. We have fun! Oh, there are the traditional workshop sessions that deal with writing such as The Basic Guide to Weapons, Baiting your Story, and Writing Action Scenes; but more importantly, is the networking or interaction with the authors. Everyone is so friendly and full of helpful advice.

Top Seven Memories from the Conference:

1. Spending time with friends

It’s great to see your friends at monthly meetings, but nothing enhances a friendship more than getting to spend quality time with them. We spent so much time laughing! So much so, we even received a noise complaint. Nothing compares to feeling like a kid being reprimanded with friends – Louisa Bacio, Nikki Prince, Sabrina Sol, Erin Pryor, and Elise Scott – early on a Saturday night (9:15)!

2. Christie Craig’s session: Using Humor in Your Writing

Christie had us rolling on the floor sharing stories from her life that have made it into her books. Her life truly follows the “I couldn’t make this stuff up if I tried” adage. Thanks for the laughs and advice, Christie!

3. Meeting Barbara Vey

If you love to read, Barbara is the lady to follow! She has her own blog (, hosts an annual Reader Appreciation Luncheon in Milwaukee and is contributor to Publisher’s Weekly. Along with providing fantastic social media tips, she an all around hoot!

4. Linda Thomas-Sundstrom’s session: Advanced Tools of the Trade

Linda filled in as the session speaker, last minute, but you couldn’t tell. She offered sound advice for authors on what to look for while doing their “homework” before submitting to a publisher.

5. Elizabeth Boyle’s Session:  Character Self-definition

We see character flaws by design. Elizabeth showed us how and why a character’s self-definition is so important and how he/she needs to grow throughout. (Loved all the Luke Skywalker examples, too…I’m such a Star Wars geek!)

6. Brenda Chin from Harlequin Blaze

Brenda let us know exactly what Blaze was looking for in submissions and gave pointers to help make submissions stand out. She even wanted people to submit a one-paragraph pitch to her while at the conference!

7. Public Book Signing

Who doesn’t love meeting their favorite author? This was a great opportunity for the local public to interact with their favorites as well as meet new authors.

There really are more than five top moments, but these five stand out the most. This type of experience really needs to happen more often. We get so busy with “life” we forget to relax, laugh, and enjoy!

If you’re looking for a way for to unwind — with a good book or a vacation (or both), let us know. We have recommendations for both!



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