Monday, July 31, 2006

RWA: Wednesday

On to my report of Wednesday. This was the one day I slept in, since there were no classes being offered this day and I didn't need to check out of the hotel until 11:00 AM. So I had a relaxing morning and checked out right around 11:00. Then, I headed over to the Marriott Marquis hotel, which was (thankfully) right across the street from the Hilton. I was a little concerned that they wouldn't let me check in until 3:00 PM, but I checked in early with no problem.

The hotel was amazing--very large and elegant. I wish I had pictures to show you, but I kept putting it off, thinking I would take photos later. Sorry. :( In any case, I shared a room with Ember Case, who is just fabulous, the best roommate I could have had.

After settling into the room, I went down to the conference registration desk and got my name tag. A good reminder that I needed to learn to answer to Lia. LOL! Then I wandered over to get my conference bag, which was offered by William Morrow. It was filled with books: 18, to be exact. And this was only the beginning of the book pile I managed to accumulate.

In the afternoon, I wandered over to the Goody Room, where authors leave goodies such as bookmarks, pins, pens, cover flats, postcards, etc., for conference registrants to take. There was no limit to the number of times you could go into the room, so I made sure to visit it Thursday and Friday as well, since more authors would come and set out new items. I came home with a bag of goodies, including a few books. The most practical item I picked up was a fan, which came in handy later (more about that later).

I also dropped off my goodies, which were magnets for my two books to date: Office Relations and Between Floors. I spread them out over several tables so that someone who might miss them on one table would notice them on another. I also stopped by the Bookfair and bought two books about writing.

That afternoon, I took a nap before getting ready for the RWA literacy signing. I didn't have books to sell, but I've been limiting my book purchases for months and was ready to spend. That's exactly what I did. After waiting outside the ballroom for half an hour, the doors opened and I walked up and down the aisles collecting books I wanted to buy. I had a cart with me, so I wasn't limited to what I could carry.

The result? I left with 34 books, many of them trade paperbacks. It turned out that quite a few of them were books that weren't available at the publisher signings (where attendees could get books free as long as they were willing to wait in line for them). Can you tell I'm trying to justify the amount I spent? OK, I'll tell you, but remember, I saved up several months for this. (Yep, still rationalizing the fact that I spent almost $400.)

Here's the full cart, though you can't see all the books I bought.

The signing was a lot of fun. I ran into several Romance Divas, including my roommate. It was so great to finally put faces to some of the names I've seen so often.

After the signing, I took the books back to my room and went with several Divas to a restaurant named Ruth's Chris. Their specialty is steak, and it was pretty good.

Clockwise starting from front left: Shelli Stevens, me, Ember, Emma Peterson, Jax, Kristen, Sherice

We returned to the hotel after dinner and went to Champion's, a bar and grill. A certain Diva (not me!) showed off her corset, which earned free drinks for her table and ours! LOL! I stayed and socialized for a while, then went back to the hotel room to get some sleep before the next day.

Number of Books Acquired on Wednesday: 56

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Name: Lia
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Packing to Commence
Taking July Off
Rising from the Dead
Staying Busy
Office Relations Available Now!

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