More about RWA and Dallas by Diane GastonEsri blogged about how friends helped her accomplish wonderful things, both in writing and while attending RWA. I totally agree! Friends are a priceless asset! So I'm going to blog more about friends and the conference.
One of the things I loved about the RWA conference was seeing all the friends I don't get to see except once a year at the conference. I loved that I could not cross an area of the Hyatt Regency without needing to stop and hug one or two or three more friends. It was frustrating for anyone walking with me, but it made me happy.
One thing I hate about the conference is I never have enough time with all these friends. I was able to hang out with the Wet Noodle Posse a little, but not nearly enough, and I only managed to take one photo with a Noodler.
Here I am with Noodler Karen Potter at the Literacy booksigning.
If you scroll down to Mary's Noodler photos, you'll notice I didn't get in the Noodler group picture AGAIN. And that the photos where I do appear all show me with food in my mouth!
So here, at random, are some photos of me and non-noodler friends, just to extend the conference joy a little longer.
At the booksigning who should come in but my dear friend Rebecca Wade! Becky wrote some wonderful Westerns for Avon a few years ago, but now she is busy raising a family. I had dinner with her and the family on Sunday night after the conference, but, wouldn't you know, I forgot to take more pictures!
Still at the booksigning, here I am with Karen Anders
Karen, who writes for Blaze, is a longtime friend and critique partner, but she moved to another state so I don't get to see her as often.
One of the highlights of the conference for me is always the Harlequin Party. This year I was able to arrive at the beginning and stay to the very end. I danced the night away and saw more friends, like the lovely Olivia Gates, who writes Mills & Boon Medicals and fellow Harlequin Historical author, Blythe Gifford.
The grand finale of the conference is, of course, the awards ceremony where our wonderful Trish Milburn won yet another Golden Heart. These are som special friends seen after the ceremony. My long time friend and once mentor, Amanda McCabe, who is now a fellow Harlequin Historical author. The other two ladies are Romance Vagabonds, Elodie and Manda, and, I tell you, we Noodlers need to watch out, because those Vagabonds are a pretty terrific group of aspiring writers. Someday they might even eclipse us!
After the conference, I spent the day with my high school friend, Eleshea. Just what I needed to unwind. You'll notice in this photo that I am wearing glasses. This is a rare image, blog readers, because I'll do almost anything to avoid being photographed in my glasses. I was pretty tired and simply forgot to whip them off at the last minute.
One more thing!!! The day before I left for the conference, my BRAND NEW WEBSITE made its debut. I had these lovely bookmarks to give away at the conference.
Come take a look! http://www.dianegaston.com
I have all kinds of news, features, and a contest going on RIGHT NOW. You and a friend of your choosing can win a copy of The Mysterious Miss M, my very first book!
That's all folks!