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.
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Reading all of the RWA coverage was such a great way to start my Monday. And I loved seeing all the photos. It reminded me of when I was fourteen and joined a pen pal club and was absolutely mad to meet all my penfriends. I never did of course, because then I turned fifteen and moved on to other things. But if I had then it would have been … well, no, nothing like this. Thank you Sarah, thank you Candy, so much for going to Dallas and reporting back. Loved the Smart Bitch glasses, loved the polka dot dress (Iâ€™m a girl what likes the dots).
ps when I saw the picture of Nora Robertsâ€™ back, my gob, she was smacked. Fucking hell. The woman has clearly come from another planet. One where the inhabitants are smarter, savvier, funnier, more toned and better dressed than here on Earth.
It was so great to finally meet the two of you so I can show off my bicep ;-). Awesome polka dress, Candy (the purple suits ya) and awesome gestation, Sarah! I was so sorry we didn’t spend more time yakking.
Okay, how damned hard am I laughing that you umlauted my entire name? *snerk* 😀
And dammit, we need to find one of the pictures of the backs of your knee highs because the little pink bows totally rocked the house, baby!
Wow, that looks like you guys had tons of fun! Congrats to everyone who brought home a pretty little bookweight/end!
And Barb/Caridad, you are one lucky bitch. Your hubby is *hot*. He doesn’t have a twin, does he? Maybe a long-lost one with a tormented past but gentle soul? Double bonus points if he’s a pirate. 😉
I’m still reading everything! Thank you so much for sharing. It’s not as good as being there, but it helps.
Dude, I was wearing quite a bit of make-up. My paleness is undefeatable! I should write vampire romances and be one of those psycho chics who dress up like their characters.
Great post! Great pictures!
LOVE the polka dots!
Wow, Roxanne and I had the same conference goal. Meeting you made the whole thing complete. Especially loved the polka dot dress with the pimp hat. Yow!
Y’all were just as awesome in person (nay, more awesome) as online. And yeah, Victoria and Jennifer should relocate.
Well, obviously, next time I have a party I need to invite the Smart Bitches. You guys look like ya’ll had a blast in a half.
I had a blast at Bitchy Hour and loved meeting everyone.
I was leaving a message on my CP’s phone when I spotted Sarah at the after-awards thingie. The message? “Grab that bitch—I wanna a picture!”
It was really great meeting you two!!
So glad to see what everyone looks like! Thanks for the photos.
OH MY GOSH!!!! It was so so so great to finally meet you both!! And you’re both way more beautiful than the law should allow. How funny is it that the first thing I thought when I saw my new cover was ‘OH, NO!! SMART BITCHES COVER SNARK WITH THE BIG SWORD JOKES!!!!” and then 5 minutes later you showed up at the signing. It was so much fun – I’m so glad you came.
Alesia aka Alyssa Day
My first thought to all of these pictures was “Wow! The Bitches are beautiful!” And, Nora, your dress is stunning; it makes me think of the Golden Age of Hollywood.
Next time, I have got to go.
Aw, Jeri, you are impossibly sweet! I had a great time with you in the bar. And you know without doubt that I love you, because I revealed my secret gift to you before I realized that you weren’t as drunk as I was. You may not have been drunk at all, in fact. Damn you.
Well, sheeit, what IS your secret gift, Victoria?
Also: So glad we made it to the RWA this year. The whole thing was fun like damn and like burning.
1. Meet SB Sarah. Check.
2. Meet SB Candy. Check
3. Gush and do total fan girl thing. Check.
4. Bring home large chunk of metal. Check.
I ask you, what’s left?
Thanks for helping me meet my lofty conference goals.
Well, sheeit, what IS your secret gift, Victoria?
Well, if you’d stuck around about 20 more minutes, Candy, you’d know.
And Victoria, don’t go sullying my rep by implying I wasn’t drunk. That’s an insult to us corkscrew redheaded Irish.
Wow! If there’s a RITA award for Best Cleavage, the honours would go to Ann Aguirre.
^ Totally. Are we allowed to perv?
Ann, I’d like to thank you on behalf of the girls for this honor. Thelma and Louise realize they have a profound impact, so I take great caution when unleashing them.
Go for it, Cheryl. You can’t be worse than the truck drivers at Waffle House.
Lovely pictures. Thank you for sharing with us.
Candy and Sarah, you’re both beautiful!Candy, that was a killer outfit, and that lipstick is fantastic on you. Sarah, you DO look like you’re only 20, and you have that pregnancy glow thing going, don’t you? I hate you both.
I am speechless with envy at the picture of Ann Aguirre with Thelma and Louise. As my mother used to tell me when I was a teenager, at least small ones don’t sag when you’re older. I’m old enough now to say that’s maybe 80% true. Not much consolation, though.
I always figured that if I had cleavage, I could do a nip and tuck once gravity started working against me.
But, alas, God never gave me the choice.
Of course, for those to who recommend push-up bras for the cleavage-challenged, they don’t work for me because you actually need something to push up.
Oh please oh please oh please, tell this old hag how to smile incessantly without looking like a demented vampire; how to wear sleeveless dresses without looking like a shifted-into-bat-form vampire; how to boost my titties without emphasizing the sag wrinkles; how to wear slinky dresses without emphasizing my unpregnant belly; how to…
Wait, I think these questions can be encapsulated into one: Tell me how to shave twenty years off my life before attending the “Everything’s Coming Up Diva Glam” RWA conference!
I do, by the way, know the tune to “Funky Town”. It was one of those things like an elusive little nit on the old eyeball—couldn’t rest easy until I got it.
Ann Bruce said: Of course, for those to who recommend push-up bras for the cleavage-challenged, they donâ€™t work for me because you actually need something to push up.
Amen! Coz in that pic with Ann, I’m the negative boobage one. I told Candy I’d trade a few inches of tall if she’d lend a few inches of bust.
Yup we got you on tape and we enjoyed every second of it! We thought the sound bite was perfect.
*blushes* Thanks. They gained their names because a besotted paramour claimed they could make men drive off cliffs. I’m still not certain if that was a compliment.
I call mine The Wonder Twins. When I’m feeling especially sassy, I call ‘em Zan and Jayna. Those who recognize the reference solely from those names get major props and bonus points.
Jeri: CURSE THE LUCK. Though dinner with my buddy Aaron was great fun. He told me this joke:
A blonde walks into the bar and asks the bartender for a double entendre, so he gives it to her.
“Wonder Twin powers, ACTIVATE!”
“Form of, over the shoulder boulder holder!”
“Shape of, bodacious tatas!”
I’m not even go into what parts have to touch in order for the powers to activate. Or where the monkey is during all of this.
Why yes, I’m a geek and I’m twelve, why do you ask? *g*
You guys were so sweet. It was a real pleasure meeting the both of you. Rascals.
Great pictures. Just fun, fun, fun meeting you guys.
Barb, you should have made reference to the Wonder Twins in your RITA speech. Nothing like speaking to the other 12-yo geeks in the audience and alienating EVERYONE else!
“Sarah, you DO look like youâ€™re only 20, and you have that pregnancy glow thing going, donâ€™t you?”
Ha! I’m going to feast on that compliment for awhile, considering that the glow is largely my skin going to hell in a handbasket during this pregnancy.
Wow, you SBs clean up nice! Incredible outfit, Candy, and Sarah? You do have that Madonna-like (no, not the singer) glow going for you.
Glad y’all had a good time and thanks for sharing the pix.
I’ve never seen anyone where a feather boa better 🙂
Great pictures of everyone…maybe someday I’ll make the bitching hour too…when you’re having your book signing!
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