Check in from RWA 2017 Orlando

Welcome from RWA Nationals Conference in hot, sunny, hot Orlando, FL.  Here are some images to enjoy from Wednesday, the “pre-conference” day.

Jennifer L. Armentrout


I attended the Day of YA, hosted by YA-RWA. Our keynote speaker was Jennifer L. Armentrout, who gave a lovely, moving, personal talk on how each author should define success her own way and celebrate each milestone along our writer’s journey. She encouraged us not to get so mired in the trappings of the publishing biz that we lose our love of writing.



Damon Suede


Damon Suede presented a master class on “Star Turns: making protagonists shine.” It was one of the best writing craft classes that I have ever taken. In only 2 hours, he had me excited about new ideas to try for character development. I skipped the rest of the afternoon (mostly) to return to my hotel room and apply some of his techniques. If you ever have the opportunity to take a class from Damon, do it!



Goody Room at RWA in Orlando

Goody Room


RWA has two rooms for picking up Stuff We All Get. The Swag Room requires a ticket for a one-time walk-through. It has the serious swag, like books and water bottles. The Goody Room is open and has bookmarks, booklets, chocolate kisses, etc.




Sabrina Jeffries and Julia Day

Sabrina Jeffries and Julia Day


Sabrina Jeffries and I are holding our awards for Booksellers Best, sponsored by Greater Detroit RWA. When she accepted her award, Sabrina told us that this book, The Study of Seduction, was the first time she’d based a hero on her husband.  It’s her “love letter to him.”




Rubies’ Reunion


And, as always, the Rubies had their annual reunion at the conference. Eight years later, we’re still going strong!  I’ll close with a shot of everyone at the reunion. (Click the image to see all of us.)

Are you attending RWA 2017? Leave a comment and tell us about the highlights or most memorable aspects of your conference so far. 




14 responses to “Check in from RWA 2017 Orlando”

  1. It sounds like you had a wonderful first day at the conference. And look at you all. You look great!

    • It was great to see everyone. I’m sorry we missed Elisa.

      I had planned to leave by 10, to catch the last ferry back to my hotel. But, OF COURSE, it was pulling away as I walked up. So I had to walk to the Swan instead. But that turned out to be good luck, because I saw my editor out jogging and we chatted. That’s one of the cool things about RWA–you see so many people that you have connections with, if only once per year.

  2. Liz talley says:

    What a wonderful day, Beth! And congrats on winning 🙂 I loved seeing my Rubies last night. Such a special group of friends and sisters:) Love to all at Nationals and those missing this year.

    • It was lovely to see you too. What a fun (and noisy) time we had. It’s a wonder the security guards didn’t pound on the door. We were laughing and talking and just having a great time.

  3. I’ll just throw this out there…

    There are so many men at the conference this year–as in attending and listening avidly to the presentations. At past conferences, there might be one or two show up in a workshop, but this year there are enough that it’s not a novelty. (pun intended 🙂

  4. Anna Bennett says:

    Thanks for this wonderful recap, Beth, and CONGRATS on your Booksellers Best win! LOVE the photo of all the Rubies too. Enjoy the rest of the week and stay cool! 🙂

  5. Congratulations, Beth, on the Booksellers Best Award and thanks for the recap. I’m looking forward to hearing more about Suede’s workshop. 🙂

    • Thanks!

      And yes, if you ever get an opportunity to hear him, please do. He mentioned teaching high school students–which made sense because the class went quickly, and we loved a little Greek in the process.

  6. Love hearing the news and seeing the pictures. You Rubies look great! Thanks for taking the time to share it, Beth. And congrats on the Booksellers Best award.

  7. Darynda Jones says:

    I’m so bummed I’m missing it!!! Thanks for sharing this, Beth. I love these little tidbits. And I adore Jennifer and Damon and Sabrina! Great choices!

  8. Tamara Hogan says:

    Congrats on the Booksellers’ Best win, Beth! And our Elisa won the Daphne. (Any other awards I didn’t hear about?) It looks like you all had a great time at the Ruby Reunion. Miss you all!

    I was telling a writing pal the other day that Damon, who has a background in both teaching and the performing arts, is one of the most gifted instructors/public speakers I’ve had the pleasure to hear. I hope the master class is available for purchase!


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