Despite the fact that I've been doing this for over eight years now, sometimes I plan an event, and the result still surprises me. Several of our KCLS librarians hosted a panel of romance authors last year and they wanted to expand upon the idea.
When given the chance to expand, I don't mess around, so I asked my RWA Chapter, (Greater Seattle Romance Writers of America) if they would like to co-sponsor an event with the library system. They said, "Yes" and I moved on to step two.
If you scroll down a few blog entries you'll see my photo with Jayne Ann Krentz. I attended a writing workshop at University Books a few months ago, and asked if she'd part of an event I was planning. Jayne told me to contact her publicist, and we were off!
On Saturday, May 2 we launched, The Romance Extravaganza!
We started the day with a meeting featuring Jacquie Rogers and Wendy Kunkle-Munk talking about Pre-Published Promotion: Get a Jump-Start on Your Career, and their new website,
1st Turning Point. They offered some great ideas for establishing yourself before you get a book deal. It was standing room only in the meeting room.
Our keynote speaker at 11:30am was Amanda Quick (Jayne Ann Krentz/Jayne Castle). It's hard enough to become a NY Times best-selling author, but doing it under 3 names is really a major achievement! She spoke on the importance of the romance genre and provided some compelling reasons why the genre is still so popular.
A book signing with all the participating authors followed, and there was cake for everyone as they waited in line to meet their favorite author.
The afternoon continued with a panel of historical authors, Amanda Quick, Gerri Russell and Deborah Schneider, (not blatant self-promotion, I was filling in for Elizabeth Boyle who was sick). It was moderated by RWA Librarian of the Year 2006 - Michele Drovdahl.
After another short round of book signing, the paranormal panel took their seats. With sometimes tough questions from Lois VanDress, one of our librarians, Stella Cameron, Alexis Morgan, Cherry Adair and Yasmine Galenorn explained the ever-growing appeal of books with vampires, mystic warriors, ghosts, werewolves and just plain spooky stuff!
The day ended with an invitation to tea at Cherry Adair's house!
I had hoped we would have a good turnout, but I never anticipated there would be an audience of over 145 people, (mostly women, but a few men too!) It was an extraordinary event, even for us and I'm already planning for 2010!