Conference Craziness!

Jeanne's I Phone 405It’s here!  Conference season!

Today (Wednesday) is the start of the huge RWA Conference in San Antonio, Texas.  Many of the Banditas are there, promoting their books at tonight’s Open-to-the-Public Literacy Signing!  They’ll be meeting up with old friends, new fans, and getting a start on learning what’s new in the writing biz.  Yay, Banditas!!  (That’s me and Nancy from last year’s Rita night….aren’t we snazzy?)

Virtually every field has a conference.  Most have one or two, depending on their size or location.  Miners have conferences, dentists and dental hygienists have conferences (Right Terry Brisbin?), doctors, morticians, romance writers, rodeo riders, cops, and probably robbers too.

Most fields have a group get-together to network, share new ideas, educate members on tried-and-true knowledge and, of course, to have a little fun.

I love conferences.  I feed on all that people energy and adore meeting new writers, new readers, and people of all walks, talks and ilks.  Grins.

I’m not in San Antonio this year as we were on vacation last week for Eldest Son’s last baseball tournament before he becomes a high school player.  It was huge fun, but I didn’t see how I could manage going to Myrtle Beach for a week, then turn around and head to the hottest corner of He…I mean San Antonio, for RWA.  Isn’t that a gorgeous view from our balcony?beach

Now that doesn’t mean that I’m not conferencing!  Oh, no!  I most assuredly AM!  As many of you know, I had a blast at Barbara Vey’s annual Reader Appreciation Luncheon in April.  If you’re anywhere near Milwaukee, you would LOVE this event!  It’s in April.  Check out the website here:  2015’s keynote speaker is the fabulous Tess Gerritson.

The pictures of me with Sylvia Day – could we have picked worse tops to put together for a photo? – and with the lady herself, Barbara Vey below, were from the 2014 event.  Yes, I DO have alien head bobbers on my head.  Your eyes do not decieve you.  :>

sylThis year’s Nora Roberts Writing Institute (Aug 8-10)  is coming up as well.  This amazing weekend event is a brilliant way to give your writing a kickstart, especially if you’re new to writing, or you’ve been away from it for a while.  The keynotes at NRWI this year are the AMAZING Sylvia Day and the equally AMAZING Hank Phillipi Ryan.  Hank’s been on the blog with us a number of times and she has a new book out too!  Bandita Donna and I will both be presenting at the NRWI as well as the fabulous Jana DeLeon, Susan Donovan, Gail Barrett, Jeanne Ford, and Agnes Jayne (also a fab blog guest!!)

I’m really looking forward to NRWI this year, even more than last year, because I’ll be in the company of fabulous writers and great creative energy.  You should come, it’s going to be great, great FUN.  (Check it out at )

Since I won’t be at RWA (*sniffle*) I’m going to milk NRWI for all the energy and booksigning mojo I can get.  Ha!

(Nora’s bookstore, TURN THE PAGE BOOKS  is doing the signing on Sunday if you’re in the area of Hagerstown MD on August 10!)

I know Banditas Nancy and Trish will head, along with my WRW Pal, Jean Marie Ward, to Atlanta for DragonCon here before too long, and Comicon, Balticon and others will be rolling around in the fall.

What about you, Buddies and Banditas?

Do you love conferences, or do they just wear you out?photo

Is there a major conference in YOUR field?  Do you go?

What about regional ones?

I know our Bandit Buddies Helen and Barb are fixtures at the Aus Romance Writers conference, and Banditas Christina and both Anna’s have been….Anyone else?

Ever had a conference romance?  (Harder at Romance conferences, since there’s so few men…hahah!!)

What’s your favorite “It happened at a conference…” story?  Mine’s about a logging demo….me, 300 loggers, some Caterpillar heavy logging equipment, jello….yeah, that was fun.

Tell all!!

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  • Jane says:

    Hello Jeanne,
    No conferences for my line of work. I know I’m missing out on all those conferences that businesses hold in Vegas. I’ve never been to romance/reader convention either. I would love to someday and meet all the Banditas.

    • Jeanne Adams says:

      Morning, Jane! Guess the rooster needed some culture and fun, so he headed to your house! Ha! And we’d LOVE to meet you too! RWA will be in NYC next year, and there is an open-to-the-public Literacy signing too, so you should come meet all the Bandits then! Oooh, that would be so fun!!

  • Amy Conley says:

    When you live in the middle of cornfields, in the middle of BFE you get to meet/go to ANY type of conference of ANY type!

    I do ;ove about the same distance from Indianapolis, Cincy, and Nashville, but I haven’t heard of anything in any of those places (note to authors going to or hosting a conference, advertise in the smaller towns’ newspapers…there are TONS of huge readers who would LOVE to attend!) But because of where we live we usually don’t know anything about them. 🙁
    Now, thanks to AVON, I was able to go to the BUNS AND ROSES in Dallas last Sept. OMG, was I ever in heaven! It was like being at a concert with all my favorite bands and/or performers.
    I have been to a few smaller book signings, just because I was out of town the same time these signings were happening, and I basically got lucky.

    • Jeanne Adams says:

      Hi Amy! Was keeping you in my thoughts this last week. :>
      I am jealous that you got to go to Buns and Roses, that is SUCH a great conference! And yes, I’ll have to remember that I need to put a notice in the smaller locals and get it to the smaller booknooks and stores. I actually hear that too often – readers were close, but never knew till AFTER the event. Sigh.
      Hopefully we’ll all get to see YOU too, at a signing one day!

  • Helen says:


    Woohoo I so love conferecnes and conventions and yes Barb and I have been to a few now and we will be at the Australian RWA conference next month for and afternoon tea with Cherry Adair and then the book signing and we will be there all day Sunday as well can’t wait.

    I have met some awesome writers over the years and this year I am going to meet Marie Force YAY

    One of my favourite moments was at the first ARRA convention in Melbourne in 2009 this was the first time I met Anna and the squeals could be herd every where LOL

    Maybe one day I will get to the American one fingers crossed

    Have Fun

    • Jeanne Adams says:

      *waves madly* Helen you’ll enjoy Cherry Adair, she’s a hoot to have a tea or drink with – a born storyteller, that one! Hahah! Prepare for it to be raucous. Grins.

      I do hope that one day I’ll get to ARRA and that you’ll get here to an RWA or wonderful reader event so we can all meet YOU!! Grins.

  • Deb says:

    Hi, Jeanne. I have been to education conferences; somewhere OK, some were less than enlightening (boring, ha!). I go to the Professional Educators of Iowa every August. It is an organization I belong to that provides support for teachers; I am on the board of directors. The one day conference always has good speakers and some fun moments.
    Do political conventions count? I have been to a couple of those.
    I would love to attend a book/author convention or conference some time. I have been to a large author meet-n-greet a few times.
    I am going to a book-signing in mid-August. A former student has published a couple of books of motivational quotes, and he has now turned those books into motivational presentations fir businesses and schools.

    • Jeanne Adams says:

      Oh, how cool about the motivational quotes! That’s great!

      Of course education and politics count. Grins. I’ve never been to a political convention. I’d like to go sometime, frankly, just to feel the energy of it. :>

      And the booksigning should be a blast. You’ll have to let us know how it went!

      • Deb says:

        My Kindle dislikes me; sorry for the typos which are auto corrected by the Kindle. Grrr.

        • Jeanne Adams says:

          No worries, Deb! And don’t you hate their autocorrect? OMGosh! Tried to write reviews the other day. Gave up b/c it made me insane with the autocorrect. I was reviewing Patricia Wrede’s 13th Child and it kept changing Wrede to Weed. Arrrrgh!

  • Hi Jeanne!
    I’m here at the airport waiting on my plane to San Antonio via Houston. I so miss that I won’t see you there BUT I’ll be seeing you in just a couple of weeks at NRWI. Wouldn’t miss it for for anything. Don’t party too hard in the lair without us! Cheers-

    • Jeanne Adams says:

      Bwahahahaha! While SOME of the Bandits are away….Sven is….cleaning. Sigh. Not nearly as much fun ’round here with a bunch’a the Bandits at National. :>

      And seriously, Sven is CLEANING. The kind of sweat-band-on-your-head, mop-and-bucket, Mrs. Murphys cleaning that’s frankly a little scary. Paolo has powerbars to keep himself going (and to keep up with Sven!)

  • Becke says:

    I believe this is 17 RWA conferences for me. Nancy and I started at the same time in Orlando. Ah, but I age us.

    I just returned in March from a Medicare Operational Officers conference in Baltimore and really enjoyed it-not the speaking part but the spectator part and learned lots.

    I went to a MO Cattlemen’s Assoc. conference on grasses. I was the ONLY woman rancher in the room. It felt a little odd. They were courteous, but I was definitely out of my element.

    • Jeanne Adams says:

      WOOOHOOO on the 17 RWA’s Becke! Wow! This is only the second I’ve missed since 2001. Sigh.

      I feel your pain on the Cattleman’s Assoc. I used to work for a heavy equipment dealer and frequently I was the only woman in the room. I actually liked it some of the time. Bwhahaha! (The famous jello incident…) Then again, there were others where I just wanted to hit all the boneheaded chauvinists with a backhoe. Snork!

  • Leah says:

    I love conferences!!! Sheepishly I admit to having a conference romance–with one of the speakers. Fun times! No conferences in my immediate future as the budget is tight this year, but I see more in my long term future.

  • Cassondra says:

    Hi Jeanne-

    I’m home, not at RWA this year, and although I will miss seeing all my friends so much, I actually DON’T like conferences.

    People would guess otherwise, but I’m actually an introvert. I need to be around humans, but that many at once is too many. The press and the noise overwhelm me and suck my energy rather than allowing me to feed on it. I always, ALWAYS come home from RWA jazzed to write, so I will miss that part–the workshops and the gathering of the creative people, but I don’t miss the crowds or the airports. Getting a bit of writing done during this time, which I’m very excited about.

    • Jeanne Adams says:

      Hey Cassondra! I’m with you on the “its good to be home and have time to write” but you already know how much I love the crowds and the bustle. Grins. Ex-tro-vert. That’s me!

      I really miss being there, and miss all the “news” and new classes and so on. Sigh.

  • catslady says:

    I’ve never been to one. Almost made one but my sister canceled out on me at the last moment and she was half the ride. Maybe some day – it does look like a blast.

  • Shannon says:

    I’ve done both conferences and seminars. The energy at conferences is wonderful, but as an introvert, I come home drained.

    In my old job, I went to the Middle East Studies Annual meeting. I would have full panels where I intended to sit through the whole thing, but then there would be sessions where there were three speakers on three different panels. Sometimes, I bounced; sometimes, I sighed and went to look if they’re paper was for sale. The other good part of MESA was the film festival. There was one Egyptian film that I still remember the sad, sad ending. Of course there was also the one about Afghanistan and opium; there was an image of a government worker and some farmers eradicating poppy fields. The narrator said that the destruction lasted just as long as the cameras were running, and then everyone went for tea.

    My favorite seminar was in Durham UK. The medieval city is spectacular. We stayed at the university and ate our meals in some posh dining room. People who say there isn’t good English food have never been where they pull out the stops–they had salmon that was outstanding and the roast beef and Yorkshire pudding was wonderful. At breakfast, they had three tables with British, American, and Japanese breakfasts. The papers and discussions about the development of tribal societies, rentier economies, and globalization were amazing since the seminar was relatively small, perhaps 80-100 people.

    My only seminar romance was in Istanbul with a guy who’s affiliation was just US Government. We sat together and wandered around on the cruise of the Bosphorus. He was curious about a dark spot near a bridge in the river since most boats, ships, and buildings along the shore were all well lit. When I was touring a modern Turkish mansion on the Bosphorus, I saw a very large Turkish warship moored to the bridge in the center of the river. I sent him an email with the photo, so yes we exchanged addresses. *g*

    • Jeanne Adams says:

      Ooooh, Shannon! Check you out, wandering ’round the Bosphorus with an “I work for the Gov’t” type! Grins.

      I must say that sounds like an absolutely fascinating conference/seminar! Wow. I know what you mean about the fidgets though. Sometimes even when the info is brilliant, I just can’t sit still that long.

  • Wow, Jeanne, I find it really hard to imagine RWA without you being there. The conference will implode! I must say I loved seeing you at RWA and what fun those couple of conferences, where I got to stay with you before we hit the madness! Love the photos!

    • Jeanne Adams says:

      Heeeeey, Anna! Miss you, miss you, miss you! Gotta say that if you or Christine had been going this year, I’d’ve somehow managed to go. :> Couldn’t have missed my Aus Banditas! I’m hoping to pull a Bandita Nancy and see Anna S sometime this year in her UK Habitat. Grins.

  • Caren Crane says:

    Jeanne, I love all conferences! I do love RWA, but am not sorry to miss the insane heat of San Antonio this year. I keep reading people’s posts about how horrid the heat is (not to mention to pan flute music!), so I am not sorry I’m home. Although I hate to miss my Banditas and many other writer friends! 🙁

    Interestingly, I haven’t been to any other WORK-related conferences. I have been to other writers conference and have loved them all. I will be at NRWI (not as an attendee, but to accompany my daughter as she attends the teen version). I hope to see you, Donna, and other writer friends as I hang out around the edges of the workshop!

    I’ll also be at M&M this fall and hope to see lot s of writer people there, too. Not the same as being at the big RWA conference, but I hope it’s close!

    • Jeanne Adams says:

      Hey Caren! I’m with you in not missing the torrid, horrid heat of San Antonio at all. The friends, yes. The ninth-circle-of-hell heat? Not a bit.

      I’m excited to see you at NRWI!! WOOT!! And like you, I adore Moonlight and Magnolias!