Live Through Me – Part 5

Here’s the last installment of my adventures at the RWA conference.

Friday morning, I was so excited for the first workshop. Two hours with best-selling author Roxanne St. Claire!!! She was going to teach us how to mend a broken scene by showing us some scenes taken from her first drafts. She explained what her editor told her was wrong with the scenes and showed us how she fixed them. This was by far the best workshop I attended.

Next, I went to a one-page plot workshop. I have to be honest, while the presenter was able to cram her plot onto one page, I don’t think that would work for me. I need too many details in my plot outline.

After that, I met up with a good friend and old critique buddy of mine, author Roni Loren. We went to the NAL book signing. The best part of this was that the authors signed the free books and addressed them to me. So cool. I’ll keep those forever.

I didn’t have time to eat lunch that day since we’d stayed in line to enter the book signing. Luckily, I had a couple of granola bars stashed in my bag just in case. The hotel had water stations all over, so we never had to worry about dragging bottles with us. What a relief. The books were heavy enough.

My next workshop was Clawing Your Way to the Top. My biggest take-away from that was that the new shelf life for books in bookstores is only 45 days. It used to be 90. In other words, if you’re not a best-selling author, after 45 days, your book will be returned to your publisher. Ugh.

The last two workshops I attended didn’t really teach me anything new. By the end of the day, I was tired of listening to speakers, so I skipped my last workshop and returned to my hotel to drop off my books. I met up with my roommate and her friend. We went out for supper and later caught a Broadway act. My first. John Leguizamo. Wow. He was amazing. If you get a chance to see him, you must go.

Well, that’s the end of my adventures in RWA land. I didn’t pitch. However, I did get up enough nerve to approach an editor and tell her I liked her energy. I’d seen her at a workshop earlier in the week. The best part? I brought 36 free books home, so I’ll have enough reading to last me quite some time.

Would you ever approach an agent or editor at a conference? Or have you? Spill the beans. What did you say or do? How did she react?

In case you missed it, I’m teaching Hook, Line, and Sinker: How to Hook Readers and Reel Them In. Click the link for more information about this online class.

Lynnette Labelle

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2 Responses to Live Through Me – Part 5

  1. Mary Raimes Curtis says:

    Hi, Lynnette:

    I found your roundup of the RWA conference interesting. Are you going to do the same thing on the Romantic Times event?

    To answer your question on meeting and agent or editor at a writer’s event. Yes, I attended a RWA chapter conference and managed to pitch to Harlequin Blaze editor, Brenda Chin. I was a nervous wreck. I’d heard that Brenda was so tough if she didn’t like what you said about your work in the first minutes, she’d boot you out. I expected to be rocketed out of there as this was my first pitch ever and I hadn’t a clue if I could recall my name, let alone my story line.
    My advice to all writers in this situation, don’t fret it. Bad things don’t always happen. Brenda was so terrific, even though my story wasn’t for Blaze, she made some suggestions, said she liked my voice and gave me the name of another editor at Halrlequin to send my work to. I came away ready to tackle dragons.

    Then, we met at breakfast the next morning and I had her all to myself. It was awesome. I wish I wrote the type of stories that Blaze would be interested in. I’d love to work with her.


  2. Lynnette Labelle says:

    Mary: I didn’t attend the Romantic Times event, so I won’t be blogging about that one. Thanks for sharing your story. Writers need to know to be cautious, but not frightened when meeting certain editors and agents.

    Lynnette Labelle

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