Back, motherfuckers! I’m kind of bereft of words at the moment, because holy crapdamn I’ve done a lot of talking in the past three days, but here’s a sort of Highlight Reel from the conference experience, in no particular order because I’m too goddamn tired to be coherent:
1. We got to attend Nora Roberts’ pre-RITA reception, which was awesome wacky funtimes. Ruth Ryan Langan thought I was 20 years old, which was balm to my almost-30-year-old soul, and I got to meet Eileen Dreyer, who’s a hoot and a half, aaaaand I got to meet Patricia Gaffney. Much embarrassed (and embarrassing) fawning ensued, because HOLY CRAP PAT GAFFNEY (I’m not quite Passion Ann Heet, but it was touch-and-go for a moment there), but Pat very graciously said “Oh, fawn away. We love fawning.”
2. I successfully stalked Barbara Samuel and squeed at her. She very graciously put up with it, and we had a brief and excellent conversation about Lucien’s Fall.
3. I got to meet Lisa Kleypas and express to her my abiding love for Celia and Justin of Only With Your Love, and how if they were a modern couple, they’d have a coke habit and trash hotel rooms together—while looking hot, of course. Those two are SO INSANE, but so hot together. I’m not a huge fan of the old-school style romances, but when they’re done well: HOT DAMN.
4. The RITA ceremony itself was incredibly boring, but it went insanely fast, which was great.
5. Romance Novel TV filmed a sound bite from me and Sarah, and I totally fucked up my line. I lose at teh televisions.
6. I finally got to meet E.D’trix and I really, really wish I could relocate her to the Pacific NW so we can meet regularly for lunch and recite dirtybadwrong haiku about magic liger jism to each in the restaurant while the waiters and patrons watched on in horror.
7. The Bitching Hour went GREAT. Met a whole buncha regulars to the site, and the conversations were loud and inappropriate, as was the laughter.
8. I noticed last night that the laugh lines bracketing my mouth are much deeper now than they were before the conference. I’m not a huge fan of wrinkles on my face, because hey, I’m as vain as the next person, but laugh lines = awesome.
OK, I’m about ready to fall over from tiredness. Here, have some pictures.
This is the back of Nora Roberts’ RITA dress. Hot, no?
Marjorie Liu is freakishly talented AND freakishly beautiful.
Julia Quinn hoists her RITA in triumph.
Victoria Dahl and Jennifer Echols, both of whom fall under the category of “People who live wayyyyy too far away from me.”
Victoria Dahl and me. I look like I’ve just smoked a fat spliff and I’m about ready to attempt to figure out the tune to “Funky Town” on a security keypad, but I swear it’s because my contacts were bothering my eyes.
Carrie Lofty (a.k.a. lovelysalome) and Ann Aguirre in their party gear. See comment about Victoria Dahl and Jennifer Echols.
Janet Mullany was totally awesome and agreed to this goofy pose of her enjoying a post-RITA dessert.
After she won her RITA, I told Cärïdäd (Bärb) Fërrër that she was so heavy metal, I’d put umlauts on all the vowels of her name every time I mentioned her in the blog for the next little while. So there you go.
Also, that dress she’s wearing? Maggie Gyllenhaal’s Oscar dress. F’real. How hot is that shit?
Kate Duffy is the motherfucking Julia Childs of romance novels, and we got to meet her. HOLY FUCKING DAMN.
Our very own Bronwyn Clarke won a Golden Heart award. Awww yeah!
L-R: Caren Johnson, Cärïdäd Fërrër, Alesia Holliday, Sarah and Cärïdäd’s husband.
Somebody else at the conference wore an awesome black dress with white polka dots. I approve.
“So you grab em, see, but you gotta be FIRM, and then you twist like SO until they start crying like the little bitches they are…”
“Yeah, whatever, I much prefer to just smack them in the crotch with the 20-lb. chunk of metal I’m holding in my hand.”
So yeah, Roxanne St. Claire had declared that one of her conference goals was to meet us Bitches, which tickled us no end, and Heather Osborn took this awesomely goofy candid shot of the two of us talking. I can’t remember what we were talking about, but I’m sure it was even more exciting than the gestures indicated.
I am a massive, massive dork. My cheeks were hurting from laughing and smiling so much all night, and you could definitely tell in this photo.
For whatever reason, I had always envisioned Jeri Smith-Ready as a corkscrew-curled redhead. I had never seen a picture of her before meeting her, mind you. That was just the impression I got from reading her comments. My brain is a strange place.