I’ve been a bit slow posting a new blog, mainly because since the conference I’ve made some serious career decisions (I have a writing career?) about where I want to be in five years time and how I intend to achieve that. Some of those decisions have been hard because one thing I have learned about achieving your dream is that this is also a business. Sometimes that’s difficult for us creative types to understand.

I know now that I have to write to deadlines, promote myself, keep an eye on the market, edit on time, keep my website up to date and generally try and bring up my four kids without becoming a stranger. It’s an interesting time and I’m enjoying the challenge. Oh and I forgot, keep writing quality fiction.

I read a fascinating interview with Nora Roberts in this month’s RWR and I have to say she is my new hero. Her kick-ass attitude is absolutely what I need to cultivate. She doesn’t make excuses, she just gets her butt in her chair and writes the damn book. (or books in her case)

Anyway, back to Atlanta. I got to go to the top secret PAN workshops (Professional Author Network) so secret that they don’t even print the agenda in the conference handbook but pass it out on a separate sheet. And yes, the workshops were a real eye opener. Not so much of the ra ra you can do it! more of the ‘how to get out of this publishing house, how to make more money, how to run a business etc. Very helpful and again ramming home the message that the life of a published romance writer isn’t all sweetness and roses.

I also got to meet my editor from Virgin Books, Adam Neville who came over for the conference. I think he was amazed at the sight of 2000 plus romance writers all in one place and being as he was one of the very few men there, he drew a lot of attention. It’s great to have the opportunity to chat face to face. You’d be amazed at the number of people who never actually meet their editor!

If you ever read Claire Delacroix’s blog she mentions the value of publisher enthusiasm for you and your book. So it was extra nice for me to hear Adam pitch my book with enthusiasm. And he did it much better than I could! The other good thing is that Virgin have big plans for both the Black Lace and the Cheek lines in the U.S. Here’s hoping that all works out.

What else to say about the conference? It was helpful and it was different being published and I mean that in a good way. It was great to see all my friends again and make some new ones. (especially my very own stalker, Louisa)
I’m writing consistently and back to my old machine-like self
Next year should be even better.