THE FAERY COURT
Yes, let's jump right in since I've been promising this for a while. RT goers know that every year, there's a "faery ball" dinner, with dancing and costume contests and other good times. This year, I was part of the hosting court itself, meaning I got to hang out on stage with this group:
Which one am I? Let's take a closer look.
That's me, posing with author Barry Eisler, who has the honor of being the first guy to be on the court. Both of us de-winged for dinner, but as you can see, he still got into the fairy spirit:
Also on the court was my pal Stacia Kane. The fairies were divided up by element, and we thought it'd be cool to do fire and ice--creating a difficult task since in real life, I'm a redhead and she's a platinum blonde.
My dress was modified by the fab Caitlin Kittredge who spent long hours in my room sewing and teaching me about WWII.
To prove that the con isn't all about dressing up and socializing (not that you'll be able to tell as the rest of this post goes on), I figured I should show that we do actually do some serious author stuff here. Here's a steampunk panel, with my friends looking raptly on as someone apparently makes a compelling point.
Some authors got very passionate on panels, like the wonderful and gorgeous Vicki Pettersson, who must be threatening to crush those who get in her way.
We also did this thing called Club RT, which is a kind of author meet-and-greet. My friends and I signed up for the same time so that we could all hang out together and chat with readers en masse. Mark Henry was especially entertaining.
If you thought the faery ball was the only extravagant show going on during this con, you thought wrong. Every year, there's also a vampire ball, which is notable for its dinner theatre musical stage show, put on by author Heather Graham and family/friends. This year's show was a murder mystery that combined Alice in Wonderland, Twilight, True Blood, and Dexter. With Lady Gaga music.
And, of course, the RT con wouldn't be complete without the infamous Mr. Romance pageant, which was run really well this year. Like the above pic, it was hard to get a good shot of anything on stage, but I think this picture will pretty much tell you what you need to know.
BOOK FAIR AND SIGNING
Saturday was the big book fair, where all the authors are put into a giant room to sign and sell books. It's open to the public, and I had a really, really amazing turnout. Everyone seemed really surprised by this, and my starting table wasn't adequate to handle the numbers who came (~300). I wasn't so surprised because I often get 100-200 people at bookstore signings, and lots of non-con people had told me online they were coming. But this con is geared more toward those writing adult romance, so my YA (and adult) crowd was a bit unexpected.
Now, before I sound like an egotistical brat, let me clarify: I had nowhere near the number of fans as heavy hitters like Charlaine Harris, Jim Butcher, and JR Ward. But, I did have to be moved to an area with more space. My pal Heather Osborn, editor at Tor, kindly jumped in to play impromptu publicist and helped manage the line by writing people's names on post-its and keeping things moving.
I'm super grateful for Heather's help and to all the readers who came out. As often happens, we had a lot of homemade VA shirts!
Some even got their moms to dress up:
There were a lot of t-shirt pics that didn't come out very well, so if you don't see yours here, don't take offense. All were awesome. Thanks for dressing up!
All in all, a great turn-out with great people. Thanks so much to those who came out (some from really far away)! I loved meeting you all. Thanks also to the RT staff who were so quick to accommodate and help with the surprise line. Good times.
COOL PEOPLE I KNOW
And yes, as I've often said, RT is all about networking and being with people you haven't seen in a while. Here's the awesome line-up of friends I got to hang out with this week.
First up: Kat Richardson. Okay, it's true I do see her often because she lives in Seattle (and traveled here with me), but I think this is a glamorous shot and like it.
People who like humorous vampire pics will recognize Michele Bardsley, who kindly opened up her room for a party on Saturday night. Mario Acevedo is trying to get in on our picture.
Rock Band was going on at the party, and here Michele plays drums while Heather sings and Michelle Rowen plays guitar.
My agent Jim McCarthy was coaxed to come to the con too, so it was great hanging out with him. If you love my books, you should love Jim because he's the one responsible for seeing that they get sold to publishers.
Redhead author Diana Rowland came here from New Orleans and brought along...a friend, affectionately dubbed Creepy Doll who appears unexpectedly in scary places, like people's beds. Creepy Doll also has her own Twitter account now if you want to follow some freaky updates.
Caitlin's been introduced around here a few times already, but I like this shot of us.
We're all such dorks that when we get together, my author friends and I sit around and read romance books aloud (particularly their racy parts). You've never seen anything more ridiculous than 25 adults huddled together, giggling and shrieking like kids over bad words. We got noise complaints from the hotel. Stacia is one of the best and most dramatic readers.
Anddddd...I think that's a wrap! Like I said, most of us are too tired to do much today, but I'll post anything else that comes along. Tomorrow we fly back to Seattle, and I'll get back to that writing thing I do.