writing life

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Romance Writers of America’s National conference never disappoints. I always return both informed & inspired. And, if you’d like to share a little bit of the passion and inspiration Nationals can provide, take a look at Kristan Higgans’ amazing lunchtime speech. There wasn’t a dry eye in the room when she finished.

As usual, I attended the Beau Monde Soiree, where Regency Authors dress in period clothing and dance the night away. This year I had some special treats: Karaoke with some friends, Lunch with the LaLas, Tea with the Duchesses and dancing at Samhain’s rocking Post-Awards Reception. One of the best moments was watching my friend and sometime critique partner Miranda Laisson win the Golden Heart!

I’ve been getting in a daily word count, participating on social media, keeping in touch with family and friends, reading new releases and managing to keep a reasonably clean house (I *have* to do the latter, our home is on the market).

For the first time in a very long time, I feel hopeful, focused and excited about what will come next. AND part of what-will-come-next is Romance Novel Writers of America’s National Conference in Atlanta!

As I start to pack and prepare, my thoughts are on last year’s experience. As I mentioned in an earlier post, my father passed away a few weeks after RWA12. Caught up in the aftermath of his shockingly rapid decline, I never truly celebrated the amazing experience that was being a Golden Heart Finalist.

And my RWA 2012 experience deserves to be celebrated. For an aspiring romance writer, RWA’s national conference is the most crazy, the most validating, and the wildest experience of a dream come true–for a GH finalist, the experience is rock-star fun. So, in celebration of last year’s wild ride, I give you my photos of RWA 2012:

I began by volunteering at the Registration Desk. Continue reading

poison_w_rosieA few weeks ago, my friend Inara Scott wrote a post celebrating the pending release of her friend Bridget Zinn‘s Young Adult Fantasy novel Poison. Heartbreakingly, Bridget passed away in May of 2011. Inara’s description Bridget’s inner light, art and life touched me deeply, and after reading, I wanted to help spread the word about Bridget’s novel so that her legacy would touch readers as her life had touched those she called friends.

Now, a description of Poison:

Sixteen-year-old Kyra, a highly-skilled potions master, is the only one who knows her kingdom is on the verge of destruction—which means she’s the only one who can save it. Faced with no other choice, Kyra decides to do what she does best: poison the kingdom’s future ruler, who also happens to be her former best friend. But, for the first time ever, her poisoned dart…misses.

Now a fugitive instead of a hero, Kyra is caught in a game of hide-and-seek with the king’s army and her potioner ex-boyfriend, Hal. At least she’s not alone. She’s armed with her vital potions, a too-cute pig, and Fred, the charming adventurer she can’t stop thinking about. Kyra is determined to get herself a second chance (at murder), but will she be able to find and defeat the princess before Hal and the army find her?

Kyra is not your typical murderer, and she’s certainly no damsel-in-distress—she’s the lovable and quick-witted hero of this romantic novel that has all the right ingredients to make teen girls swoon.

Sound fabulous? That’s because it is–and I’m not even finished reading!

The novel is written in an engaging, realistic voice perfect for the symbridget_zinn_photopathetic young heroine who from page one, is determined to anything necessary to save a kingdom only she realizes is in danger. This told-from-the-heart tale is magical–both literally and figuratively–and as a reader, you cheer and commiserate with the brave and quirky heroine as she grows, learning about love, friendship and enemies who are not always what they seem.

If you like stories of adventure, magic and courage, please consider picking up a copy of Poison. You won’t be disappointed.