#ROW80 check in and Readercon!!

Well, if you haven’t met your goals over the last few days, don’t worry about it. To be perfectly honest, I didn’t even try. I’ve been at Readercon (leaving today) and having the best time ever with some of my best Twitter friends. It’s been an absolute gift to meet these people who I have only previously spoken to online, to get to know them in the flesh and spend time with them. Yes, if you’re wondering, that time was usually in the bar. I thought that was an exaggeration but no, it’s absolutely true.

So, no words were written. In my defence, I’ve had some major tech issues which mean I can’t use my laptop because it’s got no charge. I brought the power cable thinking I could find a plug adaptor out here. Guess what?

In many ways, Readercon has been like being back at university. The sessions were mostly quite academic in tone, which was helpful in some cases and not in others. I expected more about the craft of writing and this was more about the other end, the books that result. Which was great, because there were also things like analyses of young adult books and what it is that kids are looking for in fiction, which is relevant to me. There was also a panel about cities, which I hadn’t thought about but is also relevant. One of those things I saw in the programme and though “Hmmm, I should probably go to that.” And you know what? I’m glad I did.

To be honest, the best thing about Readercon has been meeting people. I met up with a bunch of Twitter folk who are actually not the ones I talk to that much, but it was just fantastic to meet them. Steve Umstead‘s book Gabriel’s Redemption is now available in print and I got a signed copy, and Glenn Skinner‘s book The Keya Quests: The Battle For Shivenridge is also available in print and I got a signed copy of that too. *cue extreme giggling and happy dancing*

I got to chat to one of my favourite people Al Boudreau, whose In Memory Of Greed is a fantastic thriller and I also got to meet Karen DeLabar, K. Victoria Smith, and Jennifer Gracen, who I have chatted to in passing, but not so much directly. That changed this weekend!

As a writer it is very important to connect with people, readers and writers and even just supportive folk, but actually getting to meet them is something else altogether. And then there are the people I met who were completely new to me. It took me 24 hours to find Steve, Karen, Karen and Glenn, which was good because it meant I actually met other people too. Myke Cole writes military fantasy – his first book is on my To Be Read list, and Sally Grotta is a writer and photographer. I even got to speak, albeit rather briefly, to Peter V Brett.

I find it hard to meet new people. I’m not one of those who can just go up to complete strangers and start chatting about whatever, but the new people I met at Readercon were definitely worth knowing.

The bad thing was that I had no plug adaptor for my laptop and the hotel shop didn’t have any, so it’s only now that I’ve been able to get online via my laptop again. I started writing this post this morning and I’m afraid I abandoned it a couple of hundred words in so that I could spend more time with the peeps before they all wended their merry ways home. Big thanks to R. B. Wood for the lift to the airport, thereby saving me $60, and to Leah Petersen for being so chirpy on the way and once we left RB to go through security.

It’s brilliantly sunny outside. Feels as though I’ve been away for weeks and I’ve still got a few days to go. This is the best trip ever, even if I have done absolutely NO WRITING WHATSOEVER.

Oh, and Charles J Shields has won a free copy of Jennifer Willis‘ Valhalla! I’ll be in touch, Charles.