Tag Archives: Washington Romance Writers DC

My Weekend in A Bigger Pond


Greetings on a lovely Tuesday morning!  With all the rain behind us for the moment, I can calm down and think again about my fabulous weekend at WRWDC’s annual retreat, In the Company of Writers.

This is one of my favorite retreats. It’s small and relaxed, but still has the energy that comes from friends meeting for two full days to talk about writing and publishing, in every possible format.

What were my favorite parts of the retreat?

A serious moment - the Magic Crystal service award.

A serious moment – the Magic Crystal service award.

  • The food. Seriously. It just kept coming – although the Saturday night desserts caused a near stampede. One poor waiter saw his tray of cheesecake slices vanished before he could get them to the serving table.
  • The seminars – My favorites: Bella Andre’s Ten Tips to Indie Success, Elaine English on Copyright (yes, it really was interesting) and the Keynote speeches. I know I’m leaving something out, but everyone put on such a great presentation, and I couldn’t be everywhere at once!
  • The bar. Yes. Seriously. We all were given a ticket for a free drink to start the weekend off. Need I say more?
  • The Editor/Agent appointments – where we are ushered into a private room with our editors and have a chance to chat. I had a request!

    Mermaid Kerri’s first author basket – I won it!

    Raffle baskets. This is a big deal with WRW – the drawings took nearly an hour on Sunday afternoon. I won two baskets!

  • Camaraderie – Should I have listed this first? The dynamics of the retreat is that of meeting old friends, rekindling friendships, and making new friends. For me, it was my first retreat under my new pseudonym.  On one level, I expected someone to tell me, “Who are you kidding? That’s not your name!” Didn’t happen.

Last, the Elvis Romance Jeopardy game. Imagine 100 women, many dressed in varying degrees of Elvis-ness. You had to be there. You really did.


Wild and Crazy at Elvis Romance Jeopardy – at least we didn’t lose!

Seriously. You had to be there.




Writers & Writing & Weekend Retreats: A Match Made in Happy Town

Denny (PortRoyale)This past weekend, I had a fabulous time in Boonsboro, MD, hanging with a bunch of writers I know from the Washington Romance Writers, a chapter of Romance Writers of America (RWA) serving the Washington, DC area.

First, you may not know about Boonsboro (Nora Roberts hangs out there a lot, but not this weekend:). Three years ago, I didn’t know it from any other small town in Maryland. But each year since first attending this gathering I’ve had a tremendous time, but this year, I don’t know, this year was a really, really, good time. Why? What made it different? Well, this year, here’s what happened:

  1. I learned about writing romance and how characters can fall in love – thank you Kathleen Gilles Seidel.
  2. I also learned I will do almost anything to receive the ARC for Lavinia Kent’s next book. Actually, I’ll do anything.
  3. I learned that with a gentle nudge J. Keely Thrall can (and did) update her website:)…
  4. I learned not everyone had heard my story about my date with Denzel Washington (back in the day, people, back in the day, but he’s on broadway now in A Raisin in the Sun – need tickets:).
  5. I learned that a good laugh can be had by all when I tell my story about how then President of the Harvard Law Review, Barack Obama, helped me out by holding my three-year old son.
  6. I learned that I can laugh to the point of tears at Meryl Streep and Adam Baldwin in “It’s Complicated” while learning about character arcs and story structure. Thank you Evie Owens.
  7. I also learned that Evie Owen’s next release, Witch Boy, has a kick-ass cover.
  8. I learned that Lisa Dyson’s debut novel, A Perfect Homecoming, debuting from Harlequin in June, has a shiny new and beautiful website, and her book cover is fantastic. So mark your calendars and stay tuned for launch parties, blog tours, and all sorts of goodness.
  9. I learned that Emelle Gamble, author of MOLLY HARPER, is a marketing all-star, and we’re thinking about putting together a marketing workshop – details to come:)!
  10. I learned that a weekend with writers, focused on their writing careers, their writing, their next book, their marketing plan, their writing world, always includes good times with good friends!
  11. But mostly, I learned that I’m damn lucky. These women writers are part of my circle of writing buddies (which also includes the wonderful Waterworld Mermaids), and in April (4-6), during the WRW In the Company of Writers 30th Anniversary Retreat I’ll get to see them all again!
  12. Also, look how happy (and gorgeous) we look! So tell me, what’s your ideal writing getaway?