On Friday, 12th July 1013, the hottest weekend of the year so far, I joined 180 members of the Romantic Novelists’ Association at The Edge, part of the University of Sheffield Endcliffe Campus, for their annual conference.
Modern and spacious, The Edge offers superb conference facilities with onsite accommodation. But my goodness was it hot.
However, Romantic Novelists are never afraid of a challenge, and faulty air conditioning was not going to deter us.
I collected my ‘goodie bag’ full of books, chocolate, biscuits, more books and even more chocolate and joined everyone for the welcome speech from our Chairman (or should that be Chairwoman) Pia Fenton. News of new contracts and awards followed, giving us a reason to celebrate. This, of course, was followed by wine, a chance to gossip, share tips and market opportunities, as well as to catch up with friends, and drink more wine!
The serious business started the following morning with Maggi Fox’s very informative session on public relations. Other sessions included using theme to deepen your work with Julie Cohen; how to manage your time, hot scenes and how to make them, and diversifying your career, had our heads buzzing with ideas.
The Gala Dinner took place on Saturday evening; sadly I was unable to attend, but the food, I’m told, was delicious, and the outfits and shoes were fabulous.
More sessions by followed on Sunday. Nina Harrington’s, in particular, on how to stop procrastinating was especially pertinent for me, and now I’m itching to finish the book that has been floating around in my head for the last 6 or 7 months!
Then all too soon it was time to say ‘goodbye’ to old and new friends, with whispered promises to catch up once more at RNAConf14 in Telford.