Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Limping Home from Conference (With Photos)

I've limped back to Dallas from sightseeing and "conferencing" in Washington, DC. Well, actually, I flew back, but there was a lot of walking in the airport!

My husband joined me for the trip this year and we went to Washington, DCon Monday. On the first day of sightseeing I discovered that I'd forgotten to pack any walking shoes, but that wasn't going to stop me from taking the Metro to Union Station, then walking around town. I wore my favorite Clarks sandals, which seemed fairly sensible to me, and we set out. Here's my husband, Chuck, standing outside the Capitol.

I developed a huge blister on my right foot about the time we hit the Air & Space Museum on The Mall. I braved the crowds and saw the one museum that I hadn't gotten to see in 2000, when the RWA Conference was in DC before. (This was especially important to me because of the July 20th 40th anniversary of the moon landing, which I clearly remember since my roommate, her family and I stayed up most of the night.) Then we took a cab back to our hotel.

On Wednesday we rented a car and I went to see my cousin Suzie, whom I hadn't seen in at least 40 years. She was the one person in our family who had an exciting job, working for the State Department all over the world. Now she lives in Reston, VA, a short drive from Washington.

On Wednesday night we took a twilight tour of Washington, which ended up being mostly during the daylight because the sun doesn't set until after 8:30 pm. We saw most of the monuments, beginning with the White House. Here's my friend and fellow North Texas Romance Writers of America aspiring author Gina Nelson, standing in front of the White House. We also saw the recently completed World War II Memorial, important to me because my father served in the Pacific during the war. The Washington Monument is in the background. We ended up in Arlington, VA at the Iwo Jima memorial, which is very impressive at night.
So then the conference started, and I got to meet some new
Harlequin American authors and see some old friends. Here's a photo of new author C. C. Coburn, a very interesting Australian who lives part of each year in Colorado, and (right) a friend from previous years, author Cathy McDavid. This photo was taken after the RWA Awards Ceremony at the ballroom in the Marriott Wardman Park hotel, where the conference was held. Previously I had a wonderful conversation with Linda Warren, a fellow Texan, who was nominated for a RITA award.

I also lunched with , Barbara White Daille, Laura Bradford and other authors, along with editors Kathleen and Johanna. Also, I spent time with another fellow Texan and new Harlequin American author, Pamela Stone. My critique partner and friend, Kara Lennox, was there and roomed with fellow Harlequin author Carla Cassidy. I'm sure I saw many others, and I apologize if I have forgotten to mention your names. It was a very exciting but tiring week!

I'm off to finish my new proposal for Kathleen and send it in post haste (as I am already woefully late.) And then I'm going to come up with some new ideas for more Texas stories, because I've been told they are still in demand, especially cowboys and ranchers. And since I do live in Texas, I might as well do the research, right? Even if it requires me to spend lots of time with good-looking, slow talking, tight jean-wearing, cowboys. Please, no pity. I'm a big girl. Have a great month, whether you spend it at home or away, getting your own blisters.


Victoria Chancellor said...

I just noticed a couple of errors, which I thought I'd fixed. This is the first time I've uploaded photos and apparently I didn't check the final product closely enough! Sorry about the typos. I hope you enjoyed my trip report anyway. Best wishes, Victoria.

Kara Lennox said...

Hi, Vicki! Glad you made it home, as I kept thinking I would run into you and give you back your Tide pen (which worked wonders on my blouse!).

We are packing up the POD, moving furniture. I would really like to be on a breezy veranda somewhere, drinking frozen margaritas.

PamStone said...

Hi Vicki and Kara. I enjoyed seeing you both in DC. It was a fun conference.

Linda Warren said...

Hey Vicki,
It was great getting to visit in DC. I saw Kara again the next day in the lobby. It was such an exciting conference. I'm still exhausted.
I need to work up proposals on Texas stories, too. It's tough when we have to get up close and personal with those good looking, tight jean wearing cowboys and ranchers. But somebody has to do it. LOL

Lynn said...

Hi Vicki,
If you need any additional research with those cowboys let me know. (I'm sure my hubby wouldn't mind...)

Laura Bradford is an amazing woman along with being a great writer. I'm proud to call her my friend.

Megan Kelly said...

Vicki, it was nice to lunch with you and get to know you a little better. I'm recovering from conference too, but no cowboys in my near future. :( I'll have to do something about that!

Barbara White Daille said...

Vicki and Kara - it was wonderful to see you both at conference, too!

Vicki - it was great to spend some time with you at lunch, also.

And I admire your energy. I barely made it through conference, and I didn't do all that walking.

Linda - I'm sorry we missed each other. The hotel was so spread out, it was difficult to find people. Which actually made it seem more open and less crowded, but didn't do much for helping people touch base.

Speaking of touching base, I'm working on a cowboy, too. Umm...a cowboy book, that is! LOL I may need you to get up close with some ranchers for me. ;-)


Ann Roth said...

Well, Vicki... I never saw you at all! I'm sorry about that. Loved those photos and your post.

I'd like to spend a good month in DC, which really isn't enough time to see everything our capitol has to offer.

CC said...

Hi Vicki! (so nice that you think I'm interesting... I'm sure the man across the aisle on the flight back to CO who told me I was snoring too loudly might disagree).
It was great to meet you in DC and to put faces to names. Loved catching up with you again, Ann; meeting Cathy, Cathy and Linda and literally barelling into poor Ann DeFee! I feel so welcome and at home at Harlequin American and hope to spend many years there meeting the rest of you and becomming friends. :-)
So glad to hear a few of you are writing cowboys in Texas stories, will make my cowboy in Colorado that much more interesting! (snort!) Our local Sheriff has been sending me emails since I interviewed him for book #2 (got 3 from him today) I think he's keen to get a free copy. :-)