Monday, July 16, 2007

Dallas, Day 3

What I'm reading: Dragon in the System by Cindy Spencer Pape

What I'm writing: Revisions of When Danger Calls for submission

I know I'm late with these reports, but things were busy and my employer seemed to think I'd be using my spare time to WORK. I attended a fascinating workshop by Karen Rose, whom I'd missed TWICE at chapter meetings because I had to be elsewhere. She filled her hour with wonderful hints and guidelines--things to think about in order to create mystery and suspense.

The keynote luncheon featured Lisa Kleypas. Her talk was inspirational, although probably my favorite line was "working her ass ON". That's the truth -- we sit in front of a computer all day, bolstered by chocolate. Minor grumble -- normally, I'll order a vegetarian meal, not because I'm a vegetarian, although I like veggies a lot, but because in a huge banquet setting, the odds are greater that someone has paid a bit more attention to your meal, and the alternative is all too often "rubber chicken" (which I was told was the case). However, someone needs to tell the chef that vegetarians might not eat meat, but they eat, and a little protein would have been nice. A plate of steamed veggies wasn't exactly banquet fare. The cheesecake was good, though! My vegan friend had a much more substantial meal, for some reason (but no cheesecake).

The afternoon was spent at the controversial Annual General Meeting where RWA set forth new guidelines for publishers, for PAN, its Published Author Network. Emotions were high, especially where it concerned whether or not a publisher had to pay an advance, and if so, how much, in order to attend the conferences at no charge. Poor wording probably created a lot of the heat. Promises were made to clarify. Bottom line is that most small presses give small advances, if any, and most e-publishers give none. However, e-publishers pay very high royalties, so authors, especially those who write erotica, are often making as much or more than some of their print counterparts. Are their publishers less "legitimate?"

The cocktail hour provided a lot more sustenance than the luncheon, and since the next event was the "Death by Chocolate" party with the Daphne du Maurier awards, I considered that dinner. I'm new to the business, but I know 3 of the authors who were up for the single title category--Allison Brennan, Michelle Perry and Roxanne St. Claire. Rocki was the category winner, but the competition was stiff all around. Oh -- and the chocolate desserts were wonderful! I suppose it was a good thing I'd had veggies for lunch.

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