Tuesday, 9 July 2013

Atlanta bound!

by Victoria Barbour

Five things to accomplish at the RWA National Convention

Tomorrow I hop a plane for Atlanta, Georgia. I'm bound for my first Romance Writers of America National Convention. The conference doesn't begin till next week but my family and I are going early to explore the romantic and hot south!

Of course, all that means is that today I am in full-out packing frenzy, along with trying to keep my overactive mind under control. There are so many things that I want to accomplish at the conference. As a debut romance author with one self-published contemporary romance under my belt, this conference is a great opportunity for me. Industry professionals will be everywhere, and I want to ensure I make a good first impression, and perhaps a lasting one. Agents, publishers, my fellow authorsall of them have knowledge and experience I can learn from.

My heroine in Against Her Rules, Elsie, is fond of making lists. In deference to her organizational abilities, which I can only write about and never hope to achieve in real life, I've created a list of the top five things I'd like to accomplish during my first ever RWA conference. When I guest post again, we can see how I fared.

1.    Soak up as much knowledge as I can about the wild and exciting world of self-publishing.
2.    Try not to be too much of a fan. Some of my favourite romance authors will be there - what happens if I find myself stuck in an elevator with Eloisa James?
3.    Talk talk talk to people! I'm a pretty outgoing person in small groups, but find myself sometimes overcome in a really large setting. I need to make sure my inner shy gal doesn't come to the conference.
4.    Try not to break the bank from book purchases! There's a literacy book signing with hundreds of authors. The money goes to a literacy foundation. The temptation will be great to load up on books. Hopefully the weight restrictions on luggage will temper my spending.

5.    Come home with action items. Lots of them! One of the things I've learned in life is that in every meeting you should leave with at least one action item. If you leave with nothing to do, was that meeting a valuable use of your time? By my estimation, a four day conference with a daily slate of workshops should mean at least 10 action items. Fingers crossed one of those is to send a manuscript to someone!

Victoria lives on the island of Newfoundland, and is fiercely proud of her home. She can imagine no better setting for her works, and hopes that her readers will one day come to witness Newfoundland and Labrador's rustic beauty for themselves.

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  1. Love a list, Victoria. Hope you have a fab time at the conference and come home with lots of action items!

  2. Wishing I could hop on that same plane tomorrow. I think you have your conference plans pretty well thought out.
    Two lovely little memories of the hotel's southern hospitality have stuck with me-
    First, when I checked in they handed me a big juicy Georgia peach. I ate it as soon as I got to the room, and felt energized and welcome.
    Second- in the lobby there were always three huge containers of ice water. One with cucumber slices, one with lime, one with lemon. I always stopped for a drink when I cam in from the steamy outside world. Perfect.

  3. Hope you have a great time in Atlanta!