Don't click that keyboard yet! I have pictures, links and info coming up.
Let's start with Harlequin. If you hang at Harlequin's online community and ever go to a Nationals meeting, you have to attend the Harlequin PJ party. It's fun, relaxing and you get to meet all your harlequin online friends in person. Oh, and there are always fabulous party favors :). Check out the vintage Harlequin romance mug we all got this year. I'm drinking tea out of it right now.
Thank you to Jayne at Harlequin and anyone else involved in organizing the party! If I try to mention everyone I met, I know I'll forget someone, so let me just say that the entire Harlequin community (staff, published and unpublished writers alike) rock! These are truly wonderful, warm and supportive people.
|Superromance authors Kathy Altman, Linda Style and me|
|Super sweet Kathy Altman and me at the PJ party|
Updates have been made to their writing guidelines that include the latest word count changes, new series and more. I'll note a few things here, but take a minute (after this post :) to check out their new writing guidelines. Medicals are now being included in the Home and Hearth group, whereas Superromance, with it's 85k word count, is getting categorized as 'romance with more'. New lines include Kiss, a 50k flirty line coming out in Feb 2013 and Heartwarming, a 70-75k wholesome (yet with the complexity of a Supers) line looking to shift from reprints to new authors starting July 2013. Also, Harlequin Digital First is a new digital line that differs from Carina Press in that it's encompasses series books that carry the Harlequin brand. There are a few other new lines, and yet another to be announced in the next few weeks (if I understood correctly) so check out the guidelines link above!
The next Harlequin SYTYCW contest will be global and is set to launch on September 17, 2012. This time, the initial voting will be public.
And now for the RWA Literacy Autographing. It was amazing! I was having so much fun catching up with friends and meeting chapter members that I didn't get pictures of all of them (still kicking myself). But here are a few...
|Superromance author Cathryn Parry and me|
|YA author Janice Hardy. My son loooves her books and I'd promised him an autograph.|
|Kathy Altman with her debut Superromance|
|Me and the always lovely Harlequin Desire author Olivia Gates|
|The very sweet Nas Dean from Romance Book Paradise and me.|
|My dear friend Superromance author Jeannie Watt (I think you've figured out who I am at this point ;).|
Robyn Carr's awards luncheon speech was very inspiring and the GH/RITA awards ceremony emceed by Victoria Alexander was both funny and romance movie nostalgic. And the ever elegant and gracious J.D. Robb earned a laugh when she accepted her RITA and said that Nora would be jealous :)
|Me and Kathy Altman at the awards ceremony|
I'll end by saying that being surrounded by so many talented, warm and inclusive writers, editors, agents and publishers is an extraordinary, almost surreal experience. I found myself enveloped with encouragement, enthusiasm, understanding, friendship, wisdom, knowledge and so much more. In fact, I left feeling so motivated and inspired that I used the two hours I had before my flight home to write. I sat at my gate, whipped out the Alpha Smart, glanced left and right to make sure no one was reading my draft work, and went at it. So inspired was I, that I never heard them announce boarding for my flight. Luckily, I glanced up in deep thought and snapped quickly back to reality when I realized what was happening, LOL. Anyway, I'm home now and ready for another year of writing.
Happy writing and reading to all.