|Me with Lara Adrian and Larissa Ione|
As a writer, my experience at AADPHILLY was truly astounding! I had my first ever Pitch Sessions with two editors - Stacy Hague Hill from TOR and Heather Osborn from Samhain publishing. Let me set up the scene....
My CRW, Blogger and Twitter buddy Penny was my road dog and roomie for this trip. We drove to Philly. Yeah -- I know. Nine hours of highway, what were we thinking? But we did. We left Charlotte at 12:45 AM -- burning rubber. We reached the hotel at approximately 9:20 AM and after discovering we had to wait until at least 1PM to check into our rooms, we jumped into the morning activities for AADPHILLY.
Penny was my ace! She calmed me down. She said "You do not look a hot mess! In your flip flops, workout capris and T-shirt." <insert dying here>. Without our room I couldn't change my clothes and make myself "presentable" - my notes were packed up with my laptop. Oh yeah I was ready. I was also pumped up on a 5-Hour Energy drink. Talking a billion miles a minute and working on 2.5 hours of sleep after driving for 9 hours. Sure the 5-HED worked for me on the road - but now I was a hyped up mess!
|Me on hour 6 of 5-HED|
So at 11:10 AM I went to my appointment and met the fabulous Stacy Hill. Can I just say - she's the nicest editor I'd ever met. I immediately apologized for my attire, explaining what happened and guess what? She totally commiserated with me! Stacy arrived at the hotel that morning as well and wasn't able to check in either! And she's eight months pregnant! Bad form Doubletree Hilton! Give the pregnant lady a room!
Once we shared a laugh over Doubletree's fail -- it was smooth sailing. I relaxed... did my pitch and I didn't turn into ash, melt of explode! And Stacy asked for the first 3 chapters and synopsis and gave me her card. AMAZING!!!
|Float! Float on....|
Not too shabby for a first time Pitch huh? I mean what could make this event any better? Well let me tell you...
About an hour later, I'm strolling through the hotel and I hear someone call my name "Dren!" I turn around and low and behold it's Lara Adrian!! (insert internal hysterical squee here). I met Lara and her husband at RWA this past June and I actually won a kindle during her husband's event. For about 20 seconds I'm screaming in my head "OMG SHE REMEMBERS ME!!!!!" But on the outside I'm smiling and hug her! (Yep even in my hyped up/lack of sleep mode - I can still be cool!).
We exchange updates on how things are going and I tell Lara about my great pitch sessions -- even tell her about my WIP. Lara gives me some great feedback and things to really think about for my writing career. I'm totally floored! I mean LARA ADRIAN GAVE ME ADVICE ABOUT MY WRITING CAREER?!?!? My brain can't even compute!
And folks - that was simply the first SIX hours of AADPHILLY!
The rest of the trip was spent meeting authors --old and new to me. But nothing that weekend could to top the events above -- oh except this! During the author book signing, I went around asking my favorite authors to sign a special journal I brought with me. I started with Lara Adrian (of course). Here's what she wrote:
Yeap... that'll do it!