This year I went to the Georgia Romance Writer Association's Moonlight and Magnolias for the first time and I had an incredible time. I was really nervous going into the conference because I'd never been and I didn't know anyone who was going to be there. It turned out to be one of the most fun, informative conferences I've ever been to.
Everyone was beyond friendly, before I'd been there ten minutes I'd already made new friends and was getting all kinds of great advice on how to make the most of my time at the conference.
For the first time ever, I pitched agents and editors and I didn't burst into flames once! I actually spent all day Friday taking cancelled pitch sessions and ended up chatting with 7 agents and/or editors. Out of those 3 requested fulls, and 2 requested partials. The other 2 didn't represent my genre but we still had great chats about books and writing.
Jana Oliver gave a great speech during lunch about not quitting and her own path to success. It was really inspiring to hear!
Saturday I went to several workshops and learned a lot of new techniques and tips to try out. I think my favorite was learning about storyboarding your novel. I had a lot of fun cutting up pictures and making a collage of inspiration. I'll definitely pull that out in the future. Chris Marie Green gave a really fun but moving speech about her own struggles with publishing and her path through the ups and downs. She themed everything with TV shows and it was really engaging to listen to.
The evening was the Maggie Awards and one of the things i was most excited about! There aren't many chaces to get dressed up like a princess so I was happy to have the chance to throw on a dress and heels. Because I wasn't staying at the hotel, I actually ended up getting dressed in the bathroom and made several friends who were doing the same thing. Nice to know there'll always be somewhere there to zip your dress up!
The ceremony was lovely. There were a lot of beautiful tributes and speeches and it was so exciting seeing how many people cheered for one another. When the awards were over the dance floor opened up and partying fully commenced. I had a great time during the few songs I danced to!
Sunday was the day of goodbyes and while I hated telling everyone bye, I know I'll see many of them soon when I visit the Georgia Romance Writer's next meeting! :)
All in all I was amazed at how welcoming and supportive everyone was. All of the authors were thrilled to meet new authors and share wisdom. Everyone was so passionate and in love with writing that I came home ready to write my heart out on new and old projects. It's hard to be around so many incredible people and not leave inspired!