BlogHer & RWAs ~ both, either, neither?

If somehow you missed bumping into a shy redhead at BlogHer this year in New York City — well, that’s because I wasn’t there.

Somehow, I also missed the Romance Writers of America Conference (RWAs) in Anaheim. 

With all the gorgeous pics of beautiful (inside and out) writers and  bloggers having a blast, I felt like I needed a pic up too. This photo isn’t beautiful, and it’s from 2010, but I was at the RWAs. Though I didn’t attend the full conference, I did get to meet some of my favorite writers — Jane Porter, Mary Kay Andrews, Meg Cabot, Nora Roberts {though I can’t read her books. . .shhh!} You can read about my experience here.   As I mingled and wandered amongst hundreds of published authors I vowed I would attend the full conference soon. Apparently, just not this year.

Instead, this is how I spent that weekend. Somehow someone (I shall not name names) left the water on while working on our master bedroom shower. Water permeated the drywall and flooded under half the bedroom suite’s floor. Which I installed two years ago. By hand. After the plumbers and drying crew left, I spent the weekend ripping up my floor (while some kind volunteers ripped out the vanity) and redoing the whole damn thing. I lost my ability to write for two weeks as the only words I conjured were far too vulgar to put in print (and certainly not original).

And while I would have LOVED to have loaded my arms with goodie bags, hobnobbed with celebs, and met about 5,000 of my best blog friends IRL last weekend (not to mention learning so damn much about blogging my head would’ve probably exploded — that must be why they all hit the parties afterwards). . .

I  wish I was going to BlogHer '12 

I chose not to steal any of the thousands of images of my 
wannabe friends living it up and bonding in the Big Apple 
(because that’s just not how I roll).

. . . Instead I nursed my poor kiddo through his third oral surgery. {I refuse to post an actual picture of his mouth. I can’t look at it for more than a few seconds, and if I released the image into the blogosphere he’d probably sue me when he turned of age. Look at this model. It’s much prettier.}

I totally stole this image from an orthodontics website. 
If you want to see the myriad of medieval torture devices that may be in your kids’ futures, click here.

Yes, those are exposed teeth way below the gum-line attached to braces by dangling gold chains. My kid will be sporting some REAL mouth bling at back-to-school time (unlike fake-out Ryan Lochte — dude, I totally do not get it).

When I calmed down and forced myself to think about which event I regretted missing the most, I realized it was the RWAs. Don’t get me wrong, I’d nearly give my left breast to go to BlogHer, but I’ve realized I will never make my living as a professional blogger. Free wine, books, and toothbrushes — heck yeah — but I won’t be funding kiddo’s college fund with my blogging proceeds.

But it’s not just about the money. (Although making some money someday from my writing would be the cat’s pajamas.) It’s about my passion for writing, my need to give life to my stories, and my goal of publishing my freaking novel. To reach these goals and live the life I dream about, I must hone my craft and mingle with other writers. I’m dying to hear about their struggles and  successes, to soak up every blurb of advice they may offer. I need to familiarize myself with the dirty details of the publishing industry if I ever want to find an agent or sell a book. I need pay my RWA membership so I can feel like a real writer who deserves to be there.

So while I’d still LOVE to see the bloggers, writers, humorists, and culinary divas I read each day and feel as if I already know at BlogHer 13  . . .

My goal is set: I will attend RWAs next year in Atlanta. Time to start saving, keep writing, finish editing, and kick my life into gear.

Romance Writers of America®
33rd Annual Conference
Atlanta Marriott® Marquis
Atlanta, Georgia
July 17-21, 2013

Join more than 2,100 published and aspiring romance writers, editors, agents, and other industry professionals in Atlanta, GA. Conference attendees will enhance their writing and knowledge of the ins and outs of publishing at more than 100 workshops; get the inside track at panels and round-tables featuring publishing professionals; schedule a one-on-one pitch meeting with an acquiring editor or literary agent; attend parties and network with the stars of romance fiction; and be a part of RWA’s “Readers for Life” charity book signing. And let’s not forget the 2013 RITA®  and Golden Heart® Awards.
Registration for RWA2013 will open in late January 2013.

Who’s coming with me?
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8 thoughts on “BlogHer & RWAs ~ both, either, neither?

  1. ilene

    I hope you get to BlogHer 13 – and I hope I get there too! And keep working on editing that book, girlfriend! Writing is a tough process but one that comes from passion – and I am so glad to see that you are following yours!

  2. Mindy @ New Equus

    Love your post! And, if your book is as funny as the post, then you'll have a ton of readers when your book comes out!

    BTW – not sure if you're aware or not, but Michael Hyatt is doing a podcast series for first time authors. If you don't know who he is then trust me, he is an authority on this kind of stuff. Here's his website..” target=”_blank”> ” target=”_blank”> Plus, he has notes from the podcast online which lists a TON of resources!

    Blessings! 🙂
    My recent post A funny thing happened on the way to Hogwarts.

  3. Kim Bongiorno

    My brother and I had the kind of teeth that looked like someone blindly just tossed them at our faces, and hoped for the best. He had to have extra teeth pulled out before his braces were put on, and I basiclaly had a cat's cradle of elastics and wires in my mouth, plus nightly head gear. SO HAWT. And not painful at all. (I still have scars) Sorry your little guy has to go through this.

    What I loved about BlogHer12, was how writerly it was. I went to sessions about How To BootStrap Your Book Promotion and Turning Blog Posts into Publishable Essays, stuff that's more book/anthology/nolvelist writerish than just blog-writerish. I know i'll never make big bank on my blog (I only have small ads I price out that help me pay for a babysitter so I can write more) – it's not my goal.
    But having a blog of engaged readers who love your writing here can help you get that book published and sold. People will want to support you. Also, being at BlogHer surrounded me by writer, My People. It was SUCH a great feeling, and I have some new (and tighter) bonds with fellow writers that are priceless.

    I hope next your you make it to whichever writing conferences you want to. I don't consider BlogHer "just a blogging conference". I consider a conference for writers. And I am so glad I went.

    Plus, if you come next year to Chicago? I'll get to meet you. 🙂
    My recent post Summing Up My Week… (8/12-8/19/12)

  4. aka_vinobaby

    Those sessions sound fabulous! I absolutely agree with you. Having a blog with engaged readers will totally help you in so many ways — audience, community, support — and so many more. . . As I said, I'd give my left breast to go to BlogHer (maybe not, maybe a back tooth), but without sponsorship or a lotto win, it just ain't happening. Atlanta is drivable. And dreamable. And apparently this morning I like to make up new words. I'm going to go eat another Nutella muffin.

    And if I make it to Chicago, I'm totally going to pester you ;~)


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