Tuesday, August 25, 2009

kiwi conference madness

Obviously, I couldn't get enough.

Last week was RWAust and Brisbane. This week, the Romance Writers of New Zealand 16th Annual Conference, and my very first visit to New Zealand and Auckland. Like Australia, except cheaper. And the grass is greener. No, really, it is. More water in NZ.

(P.S. Same deal with the lj-cut. Sorry, scrolling peeps. Can you say counter-frickin-intuitive? Times this function has worked for me: never. Don't get. Please explain.)

On with the fun!!

The Friday night 'Leather and Lace' cocktail party went off with a bang. A selection of guests:

Sara, Giovanna and Clare:

Glenda, Michelle and Margaret:

Annie West (yay! for sheikhs and goats!!) and Amanda Ashby (yay! for zombies!):
Here's me basking in the glory of the fabulous award-collecting Kylie Short. And, me with the famous peeps: Melissa Jeglinksi from the Knight Agency, Melissa's mum, and the ultra-cool Nalini Singh :)

And from the 'Touch of Fantasy' awards dinner: Jedi Master Kylie; and Technicolour Gracie and Wicked Witch Pat.
The scrumptious food!! Our scrumptious table, brimming with contest finalists!!
The inspirational Mary Jo Putney and the Strictly Single finalists. 

Executive Editor Mary Therese Hussey from Harlequin/Silhouette and Clendon Award finalists.
Devil-winged Barbara Clendon, Peter Clendon, Mary Therese Hussey and all the Clendon fabulousness, including the outstandingly talented winner, Kylie Short sans light saber. 

And, awesome downunder authors Maree Anderson (Red Sage Publishing) and Annie West (Harlequin Presents/Sexy).
A fab time had by all. Now, I'm tired...

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

downunder conference madness

Romance Writers of Australia's Hot August Nights conference. It was huge. It was awesome. It was exhausting. Sanitised pictorial evidence follows. You've been warned.

(Oh, and sorry, folks. The lj-cut just WON'T WORK. Apologies if you didn't want to scroll through this. Nothing I can do. LJ? You listening? Why is this function so FRICKIN' HARD to use?)

We began with the Friday night cocktail party, sponsored by the good folks at Harlequin and themed 'Arabian Nights'. A good time and much free alcohol and nibblies were had by all.

Here's the incomparable and resplendent 'Queen of Romance', Valerie Parv, and me. 

My costume? Think yourself lucky you can't see the white stay-up fishnets and the red whore heels. What does this excellent tarty outfit have to do with Arabian Nights?? Well, besides that teddy bear having come all the way from Kandahar?? I'm the Sheikh's Reluctant Dead Keen Virgin Bride, of course.

A Harlequin-themed joke. Ha! The H&MB folks were so flattered, they awarded me the costume prize. I now have a hawt-man-titty-shaped bottle of chocolate schnapps on my desk. Awesome!

Oh, okay. Here are the fishnets. A warning, you got. And, me and my best buddy AJ.

Some fab costume action that probably really should have won the man-titty schapps:
On Saturday, there were, well, you know, workshops. I attended an excellent one on emotional punch by historical author Anne Gracie, and a fascinating talk by Superintendent Shane Chelepy from the Queensland Police.

And then the awards dinner on Saturday night, where my best buddy AJ Macpherson won the Emerald Award!!! for best unpublished manuscript. She is so AWESOME. She didn't win any man-titty schnapps, though.

Here's Avalon author Elisabeth Rose, AJ and the Big Green Trophy of Glory, me basking in AJ's reflected triumph, and Eos author Tracey O'hara ( ) all from Canberra.

After that, Sunday was a bit anti-climactic. I talked on a panel of newly signed authors, with  , Ellora's Cave author Mel Tescho and others. I hope those who attended got something out of it.

Conference was awesome. Now, I'm tired. Tomorrow. I'm off to Auckland to the RWNZ conference, to do it all again :)

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

the fun part begins

I'm hacking away at the WIP. I'm in that phase where I hate it, you know? It's the Worst Book Ever and no one will like it, etc. etc. blah blah woe is me.

Which must mean it's going okay. Right? For the writers out there: how do you guys deal with this? Push through? Work on something else?

Me, I just keep writing. It'll be the best I can make it, and that's all I can hope for.

In other news, yes, a couple of folks have read my little book. Here's where I show you what they said about SHADOWFAE:

(whose new book Mystical is great, btw, a neat and surprising erotic tale) did a lovely review here. My favourite part: "Erica's writing style is lyrical, honest, and very easy to get swept away in." Thanks, Yolanda!

And here's what Publishers Weekly said (sorry, you'll have to scroll down about two thirds of the way). The words "intriguingly dark" and "compellingly emotional and intense" appear. Very pleasing :)