In the Company of Writers — Part One

I woke up my car this morning.

It’s unique to those of is seasoned conventionistas, that grumbly sound your vehicle makes when you turn the key and politely ask it to dust off the cobwebs and rub the three-day sleep out of its gears. It’s a beautiful sound, full of shiny memories and the anticipation of seeing my own shower, my own bed, and my beloved’s face again.

I’ve been attending conventions since 1996. A decade and a half of seeing new places, shaking hands with my heroes, and making friends from all over the planet. I pretty much know what to expect of the continental breakfast, the bathroom amenities (Douglas Adams Rule: always bring a towel), and the occasional panel or meeting or talk. I’ve donated my fair share to book swaps and raffles and freebie tables worldwide. My head, feet, and stomach have withstood the most horrible of tortures, but never so heinous that I’m not raring to pull up my bootstraps and pin down my tiara and jump into the breach all over again.

And yet, all conventions and conferences are not the same. Like people, each one is special, from place to place and year to year. From the coordinators and the consuites to the guests and the opportunities, each is a bright star in the sky of an author’s life.

In many ways, this weekend’s Washington Romance Writers retreat was the most special of all.

[More tomorrow, when I’ve had a little sleep…xox]