Wednesday, October 03, 2007

NJRW Conference (and a few other things)

Ah... it's almost here!

Yep - the New Jersey Romance Writer's 'Put Your Heart in a Book' conference kicks off this Friday afternoon. It's the only conference I've attended (though I keep promising myself I will make it to National - one of these days) and last year was my first one. I returned from it fired up and recharged and ready to begin writing. It's amazing how a weekend surrounded by other writers will do that to you.

The workshops were fantastic and I'm sure this year's will be as well. I'll try to post from there, since I'll have my trusty laptop with me. I picked up some great information last year, and hopefully this year will be just as beneficial.

Actually, in some ways, I'm looking ever more forward to this year's conference. Last year, I'd signed up for an editor pitch session and, while it wasn't the worst thing in the world, it was something I agonized over. In some ways, I think it diminished my enjoyment of the conference itself, because I was so concerned over making the perfect pitch (if such an animal exists), that I tended to focus on that, even while sitting through other workshops. The pressure of an editor/agent pitch is unbelievable and I'd be taking notes on historical research, but my mind was echoing with that damned pitch blurb I was still struggling to write. I worked on it almost all night in my hotel room (with Castaway and then The Perfect Storm in the background.) The pitch went okay and I received a request for a partial, but it did take a lot away from the conference itself.

But this year, I don't have that pressure hanging over me. Yes, I am still in the process of agent-hunting, but since I've two books under contract and nothing really ready to go out just yet, I couldn't see the point of booking an agent appointment and putting myself under that strain again for a manuscript that, while nearing completion, isn't entirely ready to go.

So this year, I will kick back and enjoy the conference for what I can learn, and not what I have to sell. Whew...

Besides, it's a chance to get away from my office, which is even more of a nightmare than usual. I began packing it up and, I have to admit, it looks worse than it did before I started boxing things up. I never realized how many books I actually own. Twelve boxes worth! Of course, to be honest, a lot of them are reference and research books, so they're pretty heavy, which means the boxes aren't quite as full as twelve boxes of books might sound. The last thing I want is the bottoms to fall out of any of these boxes, so I tended to pack them on the lighter side.

So, I'm going through everything - I found term papers dating back to high school. Yep - say it with me, PACK RAT. It's amazing, and a little scary, but I got a kick out of looking at them and seeing how far I've come in writing style, and point of view. Egads, does that make me an adult??? Maybe, but it was fun to stroll memory lane for a while.

Well, on that note, I have edits awaiting my attention. Back to work - playtime comes this weekend! =)

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