RWA National was an interesting people-watching and celebrity-watching event for me. I was not only surrounded by famous people (and quasi-famous people, whose names I only know because I write), but I was almost their peer. Almost. Without the suite and the assistant and the book deal. Even still, I saw the faces of lots of famous folks, up close and personal. With some, I even mumbled my name and waved at my badge so they could sign a copy of their book.
Here's my list of up-close celebrity sightings:
- Kit Bond. Ok, he's not a romance author and was not (to my knowledge) at RWA National. He's a Senator from Missouri. But I sat right behind him on the plane from St. Louis. Not even in first class. I did not ask him to shake my hand, like many of my fellow fliers did once he was officially recognized.
- JR Ward. Right before the RITA awards, I was checking the back of my dress in the bathroom. She told me it looked great. She was probably laughing at me :) (Hello, anyway, should you be googling yourself! I'm the blonde in the cream dress with a big black bow on the back....)
- Brenda Novak. I helped her stock a box of give-aways in the Goody Room during my stint as a volunteer
- Angie Fox, NYT Bestselling author of the Accidental Demonslayer series. I'm cheating, here. She's a chaptermate in MORWA. I did sit with her and another chaptermate during the Dorchester spotlight.
- Kimberly Killion, RITA-nominated author of medieval Scottish romance. Cheating again--another chaptermate. Doesn't stop her book Her One Desire from being awesome. She should have won!
- Jeannie Lin. Cheating again. She's a chaptermate, a crit partner, a Golden Heart Winner, and she sold (at conference) her first novel! So, by this time next year she'll be a bonafide celebrity that folks outside RWA will recognize.
There probably ought to be more. I certainly attended enough workshops led by famous people, and had a couple of editor/agent appointments with names that fellow romance writers might recognize. But I didn't ride an elevator with anyone I recognized, or have a drink with someone. I'm not good at starting conversations. Maybe next year I'll get to chat with Jayne Ann Krentz or Susan Elizabeth Phillips (I did love their workshop...).