And now, as I sent (fingers crossed) my first round of editorial revisions off yesterday afternoon and can actually breathe again, I present my belated LA highlights!
- Managing to find people and have a blast even though I came alone and conferences in general make me a tad neurotic because it's like getting to the first day of a new school and realizing (not that you didn't already know) that the popular kids already all know each other, have their own lunch table and while they smile at you and possibly even speak, you are definitely not going to be drinking your pomegranate martini with them nor will they be laughing at your jokes. (okay, I didn't drink martinis at lunch during high school. Cut me some slack here, people. The metaphor still works. Really. Read it over and think about it) So you occasionally stumble into some awkward conversations. But you still have a great time on the whole and meet your own groups of people and get over your shy, introverted self.
- Lisa Yee's revision advice. I'd always pasted sections and/or printed out sections to revise away from the manuscript as a whole. You know - separate the bad cow from the herd or whatever. But it had never occurred to me to shift the chapter or scene into another font when I worked. She's right. It just looks so fresh and new that your brain kicks into higher gear.
- Getting to be around so many author/editor idols for four days. Seriously, if you've never been to a national convention (I hadn't) or if you've never been at all - you can't take a deep breath without stumbling over someone who's written or edited or won a prize for a book you love. Which for us writer geeks is like rubbing elbows with rock stars. ( "OMG - I just rode in the elevator with ________. He talked to me!!")
- Meeting some of my Verla and LJ friends face to face. And Verla herself! Meeting some of my 2k9 pals and having our lunch together which was ver, very cool. (Until the moment I turned my head while waiting for my fish sandwich at Breezes and got all fan geeky again because it was Ellen Hopkins eating a few tables over. Ellen - I love your books. My students love your books. )
- Realizing while with some of you wonderful 2k9ers that they feel the same way I do about all this - it's a darn miracle! We're going to have a book on a shelf. It's really happening. How the heck did this occur?
- Getting to arrive right after the earthquake and return to Houston during a Tropical Storm/possible hurricane. (It fizzled out but you never know)
- Everything else, including: Pinkberries green tea yogurt with strawberries and blueberries; getting invited to a tour of FOX studios and getting to eat lunch there and see the street set for the Royal Diner on Bones. Yes, I stood next to something that David Boreanaz stands next to. Feel free to touch me anytime. (thanks to the person who included me!! You know who you are! ); seeing some relatives I hadn't seen in awhile ("Please come get me. I'm begging you. It's Sunday night and I'm burned out." And so they did and took me on the fastest tour ever of LA. "Look quick. It's Rodeo Drive." "Crane your neck. There's the Hollywood Sign.")
Til next time...