Well, I survived my very first RWA meeting.
Not only survived, but I had a pretty good time.
Those of you who’ve been reading awhile will be disappointed to know I did not flash my underwear or drop gristle in a stranger’s purse.
In fact, I deliberately avoided a tempting box of Krispy Kreme donuts for fear I might fling one Frisbee-style across the room while bleating like a goat.
What? Don’t pretend you’ve never considered it.
The thing that most impressed me about the group was its diversity. Though I’ve been proudly crafting smut for awhile, I’ve never spent much time around my fellow romance authors.
Even though I know better, a tiny part of my brain still pictured a room full of nubile twenty-somethings tossing their raven locks as their feather boas fluttered in the breeze and they pranced around calling each other “dahling.”
Apparently the retired Air Force master sergeant seated next to me forgot his feather boa. It’s understandable, since he’s 81 years old.
But his respect for the romance genre – as well as for his late wife, who inspired his interest in it – was enough to make me consider the possibility that my preconceived notions about romance authors were a bit off-base.
I met authors who write Christian romance, and authors who write explicit smut. I met authors who are just starting their first books, and one author who’s spent so much time on the New York Times bestseller list they’re considering renaming it for her.
Suffice it to say, I would be hard-pressed to draw you a picture of the “typical” romance author.
And that’s not just because I can’t draw.
If you aren’t already a fan of Smart Bitches, Trashy Books, you must stop what you’re doing right now and visit heir blog. Then order a copy of their divine book, BEYOND HEAVING BOSOMS.
In addition to being the queens of snark, the Smart Bitches are the ultimate advocates of the romance genre. They’re clever, hilarious, and have built an impressive community of like-minded readers devoted to exploring romance novels from all angles (including some that are illegal in most Southern states).
If my first RWA meeting served to break down my preconceived notions about romance authors, the Smart Bitches will break down any you may have about the genre itself.
On that note, check out the contest they’re running. Readers were invited to create a romance novel cover using a photo they provided. As a devout Photoshop nut, I couldn’t resist the urge to play. Can you guess which one is mine?
No, I won’t tell you – it seems unfair somehow. But if you’ve been following this blog awhile, you probably find yourself saying, “I just look for the weirdest one, and that must be Tawna’s, right?”