Monday, 21 April 2014

Why I Love RWAC…and Mark Lefebvre and Marie Force!

by Julianne MacLean

I’ve been a member of Romance Writers of Atlantic Canada since its founding in 2000 by Victoria Leblanc. If memory serves me correctly, we were the first RWA chapter to be founded in the new millennium. I was a fresh faced debut author at the time, with my first book hitting the shelves of bookstores.

It’s now 2014 and I can hardly believe so much time has passed. Through the years we have been blessed with many dedicated volunteers who have stepped forward to run the executive and keep our mighty little train chugging.  We’ve hosted some stellar workshop speakers—often our own members who bring a wealth of experience to the table—but we’ve also brought in some illustrious guests who provide a fresh outlook and new knowledge on many subjects that are important to writer types like us.

A few weeks ago, our members enjoyed a superb session with Mark Lefebvre (aka Mark Leslie) from Kobo, who flew in from Toronto. He joined us for dinner and attended our chapter meeting to share his expertise as both a book retailer and author.  (Thank you to published author Shawna Romkey, who organized the Halifax book signing event and invited Mark to join us!)

Any working author who has met Mark Lefebvre agrees that he is salt of the earth (must be those charming Canadian roots!) and he is the perfect person for the job at Kobo, since he comes to the position as both an author and a bookseller. How lucky we were to entertain him in Halifax!

This past weekend, we welcomed the stunningly beautiful and fragrant New York Times bestselling Marie Force to our quaint seaside locale, and not only did she join us for dinner on Friday night, she talked to us for three hours straight on Saturday morning—without a break!—about her experiences as a hybrid author and how she has managed her career so far.  My head is still spinning from all the information she shared with us, and I left the session inspired and enlightened – and with a giant indie author “To Do” list which thrills me from brain to toe.

How fortunate I feel to be part of such a friendly, supportive, and ambitious group of writers.  Though we all come from different levels of experience, at the end of the day, we all laugh together, cheer each other on, and help each other in many different ways, both personally and professionally.  I count myself lucky to be a part of such a wonderful group of women (and the occasional gentleman).  Thank you RWAC for being a part of my life.

Julianne MacLean

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  1. I think it was Bev who said that this month has been like a mini conference for us! I've learned so much in the past month!

  2. Thanks, Juliana! I am LOLing at the "fragrant" part. I guess that was my Ralph Lauren Romance perfume! :-)