|with Kaye Dacus on prom night
On the weekend I went to the ACFW conference in Indianapolis. It was my absolute first and I think, honest to pete, I will be tired for the rest of my life.
It’s not just the travel and the lack of sleep because you are up chatting with Jess Barnes ( although Anthony Howell wasn’t mentioned once), it is the energy of the place ( I have never been in such a large hotel with 600 other authors before) , the anxiety before the meetings, the “being on” and turning your brain on and being able to smartly ( or so you hope) assess the merits of your book while across an editor in a meeting room, and being able to remember names and, in my case, being able to apologize because “I know I’ve read your book I just cannot remember the title; but did it have a red cover? That girl. On the front. Yah, her.”
My favourite part of the conference was randomly and unexpectedly bumping into authors I love. You turn around: there’s SARAH SUNDIN, or GEOFFREY WOOD (he bought me a beer! it was amazing) or MAUREENLANG! I accosted Jenny B. Jones and Nancy Herriman who, poor lady, was trying to get an elevator.
I had lovely conversations with the stunning SarahLadd. I giggled with Katie Ganshert and realized: wow! She’s a peach! I hugged Kathleen Y’Barbo Turner a billion times. It was authors---authors everywhere.
And, I, dear readers, am a total gushy fangirl.
Another highlight was meeting people I have long connected with online in person. Elizabeth Byler Younts (ARGH! LOVE SO MUCH) Sarah LoudinThomas( whose work I was a fan of before she had work to be a fan of ) and Melissa Tagg, Carla Laureano (girl crush!) and Joanne Bischof were highlights. My heart lifted when I saw them walk in a room.
|Joanne Bischof and I (totally stole this pic from fb)
All of the blogs I follow? The books and such ladies, Steve Laube, Chip MacGregor, the Litfuse Girls…. The list goes on…. They were all there! CELEBRITIES! And Frank Peretti was there too---but he scares the heck outta me….well, his books do.
---And Liz Johnson! Kaye Dacus! it was amazing
---the lovely Amy Haddock of Novel Crossing and WaterBrook who made me the best cookies I have ever had in my life
I didn’t make it to one workshop. My appointments criss-crossed and I ended up having some last minute meetings; but I realized that this conference, for me, was not about taking in in a school-like setting, it was about immersing myself in the culture. The online world stretched out and social media ( which is a wonderful thing ) incarnated into this buzzed and elated atmosphere.
I came back with a very very very very long and arduous to do list as well as instant communication with my lovely agency on where to go next.
In short, I have to write. A lot. There will be writing. A lot of it
Oh …and I went shoe-shopping with Allison Pittman ( who am I kidding. I think I paid the conference fare just to hang out with Allison Pittman. She’s my mentor, critique-r, encourager, drinking buddy, philosopher, sage, muse, wise, funny, half-of-my-undending-vaudeville-act, Texan counterpart.
*All pictures I stole from other people’s facebook feeds because I have been too lazy to upload my camera pics.
|at payless! with Le Pittman