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Guilty Pleasures Monday – RT Convention 2009

As you know, I was away this week at the 2009 RT Convention in Orlando, Florida. I had a wonderful time participating in panels, meeting with old friends and fans and also making new friends and fans! This Guilty Pleasure Monday I’m going to share some of my adventures and photos.

I arrived late on Tuesday, but got to share a plane ride with a totally interesting gentleman who was a gun collector. Talked him into answering some questions for the Liberty States Fiction Writers since he is an expert on all kinds of guns.

Wednesday I hit the ground running, starting with a mixer to honor the bookseller of the year. Here’s a photo of me with some of the wonderful performers at the mixer.

As I was heading out of the mixer, I had a big WOW as I noticed the Grand Central Promotion and saw the cover for SINS OF THE FLESH. Check it out! It’s gorgeous. I’m going to try and get a cleaner version for you.

Then I hit the ground running for the first of my many vampire, multicultural and series panels (over the course of the next few days). Check out me, LA Banks, AC Arthur, Kimberly Raye Terry and Megahn Hart on one panel.

Also got to savor the jungle-themed Ellora’s Cave party. Here’s a photo of the Ellora’s Cavemen doing a dance at the party.

Harlequin held a great mashed potatoes martini bar luncheon to celebrate its 60th anniversary and had samples of its covers from over the years as well as some great contests for bags filled with books and some SONY E-readers. Here’s Vivi Anna and me hamming it up in front of one of the covers.

From there it was more panels, more nightly festivities and an unexpected adventure which I must share.

My friends and I returned from one of the workshops and decided to take a break by partaking of a single glass of wine on the balcony of our room. First problem, a security bar that wouldn’t go up. Being independent and strong women (and determined to enjoy a beautiful spring day), we got the bar up and opened the sliding glass door. We went out onto the balcony to take a break, but to avoid bugs in the room, decided to close the door.

My friends warned me the door was hard to close, but with one easy push (those weight training sessions must be working better than I thought), the door slid closed.

Just one problem – that sticky security bar. In slow motion it came down and landed perfectly in its little receptacle, locking us out on the balcony door!

What to do? A hotel staff member drove by on the path by our room in a little golf cart and we shouted and waved to him. He waved back and grinned broadly. What else did we expect when 3 lovely women were so enthusiastically beckoning him?

Realizing we would not be freed at that moment, we imagined ourselves to be the heroines in our books who would take the bull by the horns and do something. So we formed a human chain, eased over the railing and made it to the ground.

NOT!! Luckily a gentleman came by and we caught his attention. He quickly phoned security and even came back to check if we needed anything, like more wine. LOL!

Did I mention that in addition to the security bar the door to the room was double-locked and the bar was in place?

Luckily, security did not delay too much and two of them – a man and a woman – arrived to open the door to the room and then, laughing quite uproariously, pick up the pesky security bar so we could open the sliding door.

A happy ending so we could head to the RT Awards where I cheered on my friends Vivi Anna, Anna DeStefano and Debra Webb, all winners of RT Reviewers Choice Awards this year. Anna and Debra are also Dangerous Women Writing group!

I missed the Faery Ball that night as I had a wonderful dinner with my publisher and fellow Grand Central authors, including Rita Herron, another of the Dangerous Women Writing group.

The Vampire Ball the next night was a blast. Ran into some women babysitting a ghoulish baby!

Also ran into a former Mr. Romance at the book fair who was kind enough to pose with me. What a smile! (Okay, the rest is pretty good also!)

Had lots of fun and am already thinking about heading to next year’s conference in Columbus, Ohio.

Here’s some more photos for you from the conference!

For another look at the photos, please click here or visit this link: