I am back from another great RWA Nationals and I’m suffering from conference hangover. And no, it has nothing to so with alcohol. Conference hangover, at least for me, is the period of time I need to readjust to the real world. The world where people don’t understand when I say I hear voices in my head and they say ‘me too’. Where people don’t have some really awkward thing happen to them and the first thing they think is ‘this would make a good story’. Where people don’t understand the terms POV, TSTL, and head hopping.
Conference hangover is having to let go of the boundless energy of 2000+ people who ultimately strive to do the same thing, whether writing, selling, editing, publishing, promoting, or distributing romance. When you first arrive at conference, the decibels are ear-splitting. I found myself doing the ‘squeal’ on a few occasions when I ran into my writer friends who I had not seen in a long time. And the energy does not wane as the days progress.
Networking, business meetings, workshops, publisher spotlights, book signings, keynote speeches…the activities are endless. And as much as you try, you can’t got to all of them, even if you run from session to session. So you form a plan, or strategy if you will, of what your goals are for Nationals. This year was the first year I went to Nationals as a published author. And I decided to sign at both the literacy signing and the indie book signing. A new, amazing experience for me. I was on the ‘other side’ of the table. It was great to talk to people and hand them my book to read!
And I had the honor of being both a Prism and RITA finalist this year, so the excitement of the award ceremonies also played a fun part in the festivities. For the Prism awards, I won for Best First Book and First and Second place for Mind Sweeper and Shifter Wars in the light paranormal category. So cool!
Finally, Sunday comes along and we collapse like limp dish rags at the airport waiting for our flight home. And in baggage claim, hugs are exchanged and promises to keep in touch are made.
And we head back into the ‘real world’. And the hangover begins. I spent today, doing laundry, sleeping, reading and writing this blog. A day of respite before I head to work tomorrow and start the countdown to the next Nationals…San Diego, here I come!