Skipped a day but will, when I get home, post what happened during the PRO Retreat. I have internet connection but it’s SLOOOWWWWW. Turns out this uber-expensive hotel forces me to pay $10.00 a day for water, local calls and internet service that must be dial-up, I swear. Sure, I can an extra $5.00 a day for the “fast” service but with all that this trip is costing, I just can’t bring myself to do it. 😀 Sorry. I do promise to post something Monday about the PRO Retreat.
However, let me tell you about today. I spent from 8:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. with a room full of agents, editors and conference attendees. I had so much fun today. Because I’d done this last year, I got to help the RWA staff train the new volunteers in how to be the timer and whip-cracker. Okay, so I didn’t have a real whip (I wonder if I can bring one in my luggage next year?); the concept was the same. Basically, as I did last year, I had to remind people when time was up and gently nudge them from their seats when they overstayed. It happened sometimes, mostly when both agent/editor and attendee had a great connection and you could see a relationship in its early stages. It was a lot of fun to watch but made it harder to move them out of their seats.
I talked to a lot of agents and some editors. Had a lot of fun with ones I know and that remember me. I’m going to try and put together a tip sheet of the neat little things I learned from a lot of them and post it to the blog next week so stay tuned.
Even though I wasn’t worried about pitching and I didn’t have something 100% finished, I did get some requests which I’m thrilled about.
Mostly, though, I enjoyed talking with and getting to know the agents/editors. And guess what? They really do put their pants on one leg at a time, although the delightful Nephele Tempest said she actually jumps into hers and the very open and nicely droll Christine Wittholn said she does bite. I don’t know that I believe her – I watched and talked to her. She was very upfront and honest but I never felt any teeth. 😀
Alexandra Machinist is a fun ball of energy and the slithery Barbara Poelle constantly makes me laugh. Especially after she got the toy I gave her – a little stuffed shark with bared teeth and a string that when pulled, made him vibrate. She had a lot of fun with that. Hey, get your minds out of the gutter! Still, for Ms. Poelle, a little vibrating shark was better than giving her something she could throw.
Let’s see, what else. All of them were gracious, funny and easy to talk to. If you’ve never pitched and still are afraid to pitch, let me tell you, don’t be afraid. As I heard many times today, they come to the conferences to hear from us. They want to hear from us. They LOVE to hear from us. Remember that as you get ready to pitch. If you are my chapter-mates from Portland Oregon (hi ladies and gentlemen!) you can practice and test my comments at Emerald City in October. I’ll be happy to talk to you about it.
I think that’s it for now. I have a half day with another bunch of agents and editors then I’m actually going to get into some workshops. I’ll be sure, by the grace of the slooowww internet service, try to post tomorrow night.
BTW – the heat sucks. Seriously. 😀