First let me say that I went for only a day last year and the whole thing this year. This year was SO much better! Now let me tell you about my trip!
Thursday: I took my son to school came home and finished packing. Left the house and got about a minute away and realized I’d forgotten something. I had to turn back and it was then I should have known something was going to go wrong. I picked up my item, got back in the car and went on my way.
I made a pit stop at a gas station to pick up a few snacks. Then it happens. I take a wrong turn. *sigh* Of course I took this journey before, you’d think I would have learned last year…but no, I’m VERY directionally challenged. I didn’t get far and turned around because I figured out right away. I’m good now, right. Getting lost once HAS to be enough. I was wrong. Very, very, very wrong.
I read that stupid mapquest thing right. I know I did…but I made another wrong turn. The name still looked familiar so I just kept going. Luckily I had the actual map part, not only the directions. It looked like I was going in a parallel direction. The cities looked right, I was still heading south. I stopped at a BK for lunch and asked the woman at the counter about the interstate I needed. I WAS going the right way. Once I got on I75 it was smooth sailing. I finally got to the hotel. I only added another hour to my journey.
As soon as I got to the hotel, I did what any internet addict would do…I hooked up the lap top. Is this where I admit…Um…I had TWO lap tops with me. Mini Me and then the big girl. I hooked up the big girl and we had internet access in the room. I was only on for a few minutes when two of the woman from my International Heat blog showed up.
We talked while waiting for a group to go see Wolverine. Sarah McCarty takes the early birds to a movie every year. Thanks Sarah! It was a great movie. I just needed more Ryan Reynolds.
Lol After the movie we went back upstairs and got ready for bed.
Friday: We woke up early so we could go to breakfast and the scheduled tour of Jungle Jim’s. Kathy put the wonderful event together for us all. The Bob Evans breakfast was nice. I was sitting at the table with Alyce Mitchell, a wonderful writer. I know her from Avoid Writer’s Hell. A wonderful group that we are both a part of. Also at my table was Allie K. Adams aka Eve Adams, Harrison Turner and his brother, Laura Baumbach, Valerie Tibbs, Vivian Arend and Jami Davenport aka Sofia Hunt. We had a wonderful chat.
Laura is a great source of information on m/m and it was very nice to hear her talk. After breakfast we went to Jungle Jim’s. Me, Valerie, Allie and Jami ended up skipping the tour…sorry Kathy. We did go shopping. The store was great! When we were finished we dropped some people back at the hotel and went to pick up Mari Carr and Rhian Cahill. When we got to the airport it was as if everything clicked and the five of us were long lost friends. The only thing missing was the other members of our group.
We got back to the hotel and got together our baskets or totes for the giveaways our blog did, all chatting away. We got Sherry Ricardo on the web cam so she could join in. She was supposed to be there, but got transferred before the event.
After getting the baskets together and all the gifts out of the way, it was time for registration. It is still hard to believe 300 people attended. I met so many people it is hard to keep track of them all. Of course my brain is still mush from the event so I know I’ll forget a lot! Lol
That night we met up with Jayne Rylon and I LOVE her. She is so much fun and fit right in with our group. It is wonderful when you connect with people on line only to find out it is just as great in person. Bianca D’Arc came in that night too and what a blast we all had. Wait…I THINK that was Friday. It could have been Saturday. Lol
After dinner we went back to the room, talked some more and went to sleep.
Saturday: Woke up, went to breakfast. There were some giveaways and talking. Samhain had a meeting so I wanted to go. I was hoping to pitch to Angela James. Her talk was very informative. I’m glad I sat in. At the end I found out she wasn’t taking pitches, which I would have known if I’d read the schedule. Lol I left and went back to my seat. Did I mention it was my AUTHOR seat? Lol It had my name on it and everything! They did a few more giveaways and had some lunch.
After that I went to listen to Moni Draper from Liquid Silver. She too was very informative. Moni WAS taking pitches and I signed up and was up first. I was a little nervous, but this year I had note cards. I sat down, told her about my other published works and then told her about Mag. She asked a couple questions and told me it sounded like stories she writes. This encouraged me. She even offered me information on their urban series. I did find out she is from where I was born, raised and still live. That was VERY cool! At the end she told me to send her my first six chapters! SCORE! I’m VERY excited. I’ve heard REALLY great things about Liquid Silver and I would love to be a part of their company.
Everything else is such a blur after that. Lol We ate dinner, got changed for the luau. I got to talk to Faith Bicknell-Brown aka Zinnia Hope aka J. Emberglass, Trinity Blacio and Blake Deveraux. What a great group! Then I went upstairs for a night of drinking and fun with Jayne Rylon and her husband, Bianca D’Ark, Mari Carr, Rhian Cahill, Valerie Tibbs and Vivian Arend. I’m surprised no one called to complain. What a blast. I can’t wait to see them all again!
Sunday: It was sad getting up and going to breakfast because that meant our time was over! We packed up, almost got stuck in the elevator and went to our cars. Said good bye and I was on my way.
I didn’t get lost on the way back. I DID get a story idea. *sigh* lol I saw a car pulled over on an off ramp picking up a hitchhiker. This is the first time I’ve seen that happen. I guess I’ve lead a sheltered life. Lol So if you see an m/m and a hitchhiker is involved, you’ll know where the idea came from. Heehee
I took Monday off, which was a good thing because I needed a nap mid day! Lol It is Tuesday and I’m now back at work and ready to do some more writing!