Monday, September 14, 2009

Post Conference High

There's so much to say about the fantastic Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers Colorado Gold. Fabulous! I know I'm biased because I've been a member for over 15 years, but even so, this is a wonderful venue for writers of all genres. Not only are the workshops fantastic, the folks putting in on are knowledgeable, friendly, and know what it takes to facilitate a successful writers conference.

The photo above was taken at the Thursday night pre-conference launch party that's given for all the volunteers and agent and editor guests. I stole this one off Janet Lane's blog (thanks, Janet). From left to right, we have: Scott Brendel, Janet Lane, Kay Bergstrom, Susan Smith, me, and Lawdon, who's drinking water. Water! Kay has a soda! What's wrong with you people? Believe me, there was plenty of booze to imbibe because I partook quite a bit that night.

This party is one of my favorite events at conference. It kicks off the mood with lots of energy and breaks the ice with our agent and editor friends. Agent Becca Stumpf of Prospect Literary was there again this year after snagging RMFW member Bonnie Ramthun for a client at last year's conference. I enjoy Becca quite a bit and if I didn't already have an agent you can bet I'd be knocking at her door.

We got to pal around with Janet Reid (FinePrint), Kaitlin Heller (Del Rey), Christine Hogrebe (Jane Rotrosen Agency), Kristin Nelson (Nelson Literary), Emmanuelle Alspaugh (Judith Ehrilich Literary), Jenny Rappaport (The Rappaport Agency), John Helfers (Tekno Books) and Sally Kim (HarperCollins). Drink in one hand, plate of yummy catered goodies in the other, and chatting about books and publishing. Is this a dream come true or what? :) Janet and Jenny recognized me from Twitter.

On Friday afternoon, I audited the critique session with Del Rey editor Kaitlin Heller. It's great to see an editor in action and Kaitlin did a wonderful job leading the critiques. She's a sharp editor who made very helpful observations and suggestions on the 8 participants' work. I'm eager for her to read Mystic Taxi and I emailed my agent this morning about sending her the manuscript. Fingers crossed she likes it!

That evening was the conference kick-off dinner, which was a buffet-style Mexican feast. I'm a vegetarian so I walked away starving, but everyone else seemed to enjoy their meal. My measly salad of lettuce, cheese and salsa didn't go very far and I was so hungry by the time we headed up to party hardy in the hospitality suite that I hung out by the snack table and gorged on junk to fill up.

I learned Kaitlin is as big a Hunger Games fan as I am and had just finished reading Catching Fire, which I brought with me to read on the plane. Suzanne Collins is a genious and a goddess. I haven't read a book this good in a very, very, very long time. At the Saturday night banquet, Kaitlin wore the mockingjay pin featured in the story that she got at Borders. It's too bad we don't have a Borders here in Bend. I checked online, and though the Borders site mentions there is such a thing, you apparently have to go to a brick and mortar store to buy one. So not fair. Aargh! I want my mockingjay pin and I don't want to have to drive 140 miles to get it. *pouts*

Sheesh, I've rattled on, haven't I? But I'm not done yet! I have much more to tell you so I'll save it for later. To read another blog about one of the best conferences in the country, aka the Colorado Gold, visit Betsy Dornbusch's blog.


Anonymous said...

Why must they be so cruel to the veggies? Ah well, looks like you had a fabulous time, even with an empty stomach, and made some great connections.

sue laybourn said...

Glad you had a great time.
I wish I could've gone.

Karen Duvall said...

You know, a lot of people think vegetarians eat chicken. Not sure what makes a chicken less of an animal, but there you go.

Sue, maybe you can come next year! :)