The Awesomeness that was the Romance Writers of Australia Conference – Part 1

Alrighty… *rolls up sleeves*

So this post is going to be about the best part of the conference (for me at any rate) – the people.



What came across quite clearly at the conference – from a number of different speakers – was what a wonderful bunch of people romance writers are. And I can quite categorically state that this is absolutely true. They are the BEST bunch ever and I couldn’t have asked for better company. I want to have the weekend all over again just so I can spend more time with them all.

Anyway, here is a list of conference highlights in no particular order:

1. Seeing one of my CPs, the fabulous Rachel Johns, get her First Sale ribbon. It was especially funny to see her gas-bagging so much she almost forgot she had to go up on stage to get it!

2. Having the gorgeous Becca Heath’s company at dinner with Mum and I.

3. Finally meeting the awesome Robyn Thomas AKA Chelsea Finch, one of my Sassy Sisters, face to face instead of via email.

4. Drinking the Moet that my Mum brought duty free in our hotel room with Bec and Rach before the awards dinner.

5. Not falling over on the way up to the stage to collect my High Five award.

6. My one minute of fame when I collected my High Five award.

7. Losing mobile service so I couldn’t text my Mum (who was up in the hotel room) just before the High Five award was announced. Then getting it back again just in time for Mum to dash downstairs to the ballroom to see me collect the award!

8. Did I mention collecting my High Five award? 😉

9. Having the wonderful Helen Lacey (Special Edition) recommend my blog to another author at our table.

10. Having my photo taken with the lovely Presents author Megan Crane (Caitlin Crews). I got quite shy and couldn’t think of a word to say other than smile manically!

11. Saying hi to Jane Porter cos Maisey told me to. Cue another performance of me smiling manically cos I was too shy to say anything!

12. Tearing up at Jane’s closing speech.

13. Hearing someone ask, at a panel discussion on heroines, whether any of the authors and editors present would do a crack-head heroine. Answer was: All in the execution. Cue a number of manuscripts being sent in that have crack-head heroines.

14. Having photos taken in the vintage photo booth with Robyn.

15.The plane not crashing either on the way to Melbourne or on the way back.

16. Having my amazing mother come with me, share her Moet, meet my writing buddies, see me collect my award, hold my hand on the plane, and just generally be the best roomie a girl could hope for. Love ya, Mum!

But of course, with every wonderful time, there are a few regrets:

1. That there wasn’t a free night to go out to dinner with all my fabulous mates.

2. That I didn’t ask Jane P or Megan if Hoo could get his photo taken with them.

3. That my other Sassies weren’t there to join Robyn and I.

4. That the my fabulous mates don’t live just down the road so I can go and talk to them whenever I want.

5. That the NZ conference wasn’t quite so close!

Will do another post of the actual sessions I went to and some of the insights gained, but really, it was mostly about the people and I want to do it all over again!

21 thoughts on “The Awesomeness that was the Romance Writers of Australia Conference – Part 1”

  1. LOVED this post! Was nodding at all your points. Conferences really are about socializing, aren’t they!? Am already saving for the Gold Coast – any excuse to catch up with you 🙂 AND yeah… LOL on me almost forgetting my first sale ribbon! Whoops.

  2. Rach – thanks lovie! Oh, yeah, Gold Coast for sure and if you’re not there, I don’t know if I’ll go. 🙂 Lol, you were so funny nearly forgetting your ribbon! I cheered so hard for you when you finally did get up there!

  3. *puts hand up* I did promise Rach 5 mins earlier I’d remind her about the ribbon. Sorry!

    Was so awesome to see you, and your Mum was so, so lovely. You’re a lucky girl.

    Hoping for Gold Coast!
    (the security word is ‘might’)

  4. Bec – Gold Coast, it’s a date m’dear! And yes, can I just say how wonderful it was to see you too. Mum loved meeting you guys and since she reads this blog religiously (hi Mum!) she’ll be chuffed you felt the same. 🙂

  5. Perfect post about the conference Jackie – definitely all about the people. I loved being able to meet you face-to-face and have a good chat! I had meant to get a photo but totally forgot. I hope I’ll be more clued in next year (crosses fingers). I’ll at least have First Conference jitters out of the way 🙂

    And congratulations on your High Five award!! I didn’t attend the awards ceremony – I’m rapt to hear about your moment of glory! x

  6. Lacey – awww thanks! I squeed on my award too (which sounds kind of yucky actually). 🙂

    Madeline – It was FAB to meet you too! I wish we’d had more time to chat actually. And would have loved a photo as well but I forgot about photos during the actual conference itself. All my photos are of the awards ceremony and the cocktail party! Doh. Gold Coast next year huh? 🙂

  7. Brilliant post! Of course, I’m sitting here muttering how “I’m definitely not missing next year’s party!”

    So, so, so wish I could’ve been there with you all. Following on Twitter just lacks a little in ambience!

    I hope you totally revelled in your moment of glory. You deserve the award and the chance to bask in glowing applause.

    Now on to NZ… and even more great things.

  8. Jo – you better not! Am counting your presence! Yeah, have to say, ain’t the same on Twitter. 🙂 I have to admit to not being keen on accepting the award, not when I know how badly I stuffed up that ms, but actually it was really nice in the end. Got so much support from my peeps – I am very lucky. 🙂

    Scarlet – Awww, you sweetie! Yeah, my Mum is the most wonderful support. It was just the best having her along with me. And as to my ribbon…one day. I keep thinking ‘this year’s the year!’ but it’s safer not too. I guess one year I WILL eventually be right! 🙂 My pitch isn’t till this weekend. Aussie was my relaxing conference – NZ is the stressful one. 😉

  9. Aimee – thanks m’dear!! Yeah, it was a buzz collecting it. We just won’t mention what happened to the rest of the of ms *cough* *cough*… And thanks re the pitch!

  10. Jackie, it was SO wonderful to finally meet you face to face. And drink wine, and chat, and have photos taken, and meet your lovely Mum. Congratulations on your minute of fame, and wishing you plenty more minutes like that!

    And you’ve got the pitch sorted. It’s going to be awesome!!

  11. Robyn – you are SUCH a sweetie! I wish we were all closer so I could have wine and chats with you more often. Sadly the virtual whines (and wines) will have to do until next year. 🙂
    Pitch? What pitch? 🙂

  12. So glad you had an awesomem time! I think the RWA conference is probably awesome regardless of country. I’ll be at the Australian RWA one day :).

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