Back safely from an incredible trip to Chicago for the Chicago North’s Spring Fling writer’s conference. This was my first time at Spring Fling and I must say that it was a phenomenal regional conference. The headliners, Cherry Adair and Julia Quinn, were both gracious and quite hilarious, the workshops I attended were very well done, and there were a wide array of editors/agents present. In other words, the conference was top notch. It’s put on every two years, so I would recommend planning to go in spring 2012. It is well worth it.
I can’t say enough about the people I got to know. Lydia Dare, Amy De Trempe, Samantha Grace and Erin Kelly, you girls rock! More about them individually to come, as they are historical authors not to be missed, but until then, you can check out their blog at Lady Scribes.
I got the chance to meet three other Golden Heart ® finalists, Rochelle Staab, Cat Schield and Erica O’Rourke and I must say, they are completely lovely and I am honored to be in the same GH class with them.
Erica O'Rourke, Rochelle Staab, Cat Schield and Me.
And I also met authors Sarah M. Anderson , Pamela Cayne and Ann Curtis as well as caught up with friend and awesome Regency author, Cheryl Ann Smith and Nancy J. Parra, Joelle Charbonneau and Jenna Peterson. All in all, a great time!
So now, to address the title of this blog. I am thrilled to have won the Historical Category of the Fire and Ice contest. It’s such an honor and I am grateful that the judges thought well enough of my manuscript to send it to the final round, and that the final round judge found it worthy of winning the category. But one of the things I enter contests for is to get my work in front of a particular editor or agent in hopes that they will request the full manuscript, and in that I lost. I also learned a hard lesson about the business of writing this weekend. During my editor appointment , the editor who judged my entry told me she very much enjoyed Sweet Enemy and that I had a wonderful voice and she’d love to see anything else I have, but that they’d recently published a particular book (by an author I really like, so I couldn’t even make a voodoo doll of her because she’s just too darned nice) with a similar premise to mine and therefore she couldn’t request it. The editor had some other lovely things to say about my writing, and she was very gracious and kind.
My pubbed friends assure me that editors don’t often say the things she did just to be nice and that sometimes it all just comes down to rotten timing. Perhaps so, but I am still disappointed.
Rejection and perseverance are both part of the game, so I am moving forward in the agent hunt in hopes of finding a house that loves Sweet Enemy. And I’m buying a fun gold gilded frame for my Fire and Ice certificate and maybe taking myself out for a nice glass of wine with my winnings!
In other news, I found out that Sweet Enemy is a finalist in the Georgian/Regency/Victorian category of Hearts Through History’s Romancing the Ages contest, with the final judge being an agent I’d really like to have. So I’ll set me sights on that and keep writing.
See you next week!