Conferences

From The Heart

Susan-Mermaid-avatarSeveral weeks ago I sort of volunteered to give a talk at our school’s annual faculty retreat. The day is filled with breakout sessions, much like the typical romance writing conference.  Usually, the experienced teachers are quick to propose their pilgrimages, their prayer retreats, their journey of faith through the study of art… anything that might help fill a day of Teacher Detention.  They’re the wise ones of the faculty:  they know how to fill time.  I’m not a popular teacher:  I sit in the peanut gallery.

So why, this time, did I put myself in the hot seat?  My work BFF, raised in the evangelical Christian tradition, summed it up:  “You have been Called. Do It.”  I thought for a second, told myself stop thinking, and shot off a possible topic to the organizer.

My proposal, on Finding God in the Midst of Suffering, was accepted immediately.  What? No argument?  No questioning?  No “gee, we appreciate your thought, but…”  Nope. …
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RWA Nationals, Research, and I Think I’m Writing a Book about Firefighters:)!

One of the things I enjoy about RWA Nationals is that each year I not only meet new people and connect with old conference friends, but now I’m joining RWA Chapters and actually know why I’m joining them. And yes, it has taken me a while to get with the program.

Today, I’m writing about the RWA mystery/suspense chapter, Kiss of Death – KOD. Where have you been all of my life?

I joined KOD a couple of months ago after fellow Waterworld Mermaid Avery Flynn (the organization’s President-Elect) suggested I check them out since I was polishing my contemporary romantic suspense, CHASING DAMN. Well, I spent yesterday with the gals and guy from KOD, participating in the first leg of the KOD Conference – the TOUR (which was spectacular) and attending the annual meeting and dinner last night.

DSC_0284I believe I may be in love with RESEARCH – as well as the fantastic firefighters we met at the Station…
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#RWA 13 National Conference in A.T.L – Day 1 (A Day Early:)!

Denny's MermaidsReporting from Atlanta and the RWA 2013 National Conference – it’s Mermaid Denny! Here we go, people!

Okay, I was supposed to post yesterday, but after a long drive (started our Road Trip Saturday from DC to Greensboro, NC to Savannah, GA to Atlanta), we did dinner and went down! I did, however, take a couple of iconic shots (yes, I am labeling them as such), which you will see bunches of (I’m just betting) online. Those shots – the hotel lobby ceiling (space ship futuristic and wonderful) and the cool elevator promotions – last year’s signage inside the elevator has given way to a whole new bag of book/author promotion that I just LOVE (the marketing girl in me Salutes RWA for this very cool signage).

Even this early in the AM, I give you the unexpected:

I won’t be able to share these photos because CRAZY Instagram doesn’t give you access to your own photos after you’ve uploaded…
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Mermaid Blogoversary: Contemporary Day!

by Carlene, Dana, Diana, Robin and Susan Mermaid

 

Carlene: Holy abalone fishy sisters and friends!  The Waterworld Mermaids are two years old which means it’s been two years sinceMermaid Carlene what was easily one of the best experiences of our lives—The 2011 Washington Romance Writers Spring Retreat.  Which in turn means it’s been just as long since we made these precious memories at that retreat.  Keep in mind…we were all FIRST-TIMERS!  The Contemporary Genre Mermaids hope you enjoy our trip down memory lane:

Played Romance Jeopardy for the first time…with Roxanne Rustand as my teammate!  I jotted down something beautiful she said at the Unpublished Author Roundtable: “God doesn’t give the desire if he doesn’t give the talent.”

Pitched for the very first time…to Jenny Bent, who was awesome and let me know it was totally okay that my book was driven by the characters rather than the plot.  Seriously important because as a newbie, you’re not sure if these…
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The Naked Truth About Conferences

 

April is always busy in my household because it’s birthday month. Between my immediate family, siblings and grandparents we have six birthdays between March 31st and April 19th. But April has been crazier than normal this year. Why, you ask? Conferences! Two of them in one month!

Writing is such a solitary endeavor, just you and your computer, and in my case, diet coke and a large black and white cat who thinks lying across my keyboard is the perfect way to get my attention. But, regardless what your normal writing routine is, it’s nice to get out into the world once in a while. I can’t tell you what a relief it was to go to my first conference three years ago and discover there are other people in the world that talk to fictional characters as if they are real people. And for the most part,these other people are completely sane!

They are also kind, considerate and some of the most supportive people you’ll ever meet. They understand how important a kind…
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