The amazing Diana Gabaldon was the Keynote Speaker at the 2014 Buildin' the Dream in Scottsdale Arizona. She's seen here, signing books after her speech. It was just a few weeks before Written in My Own Heart's Blood was released and about a year before the first season of Outlander aired on Starz. We were all so thrilled to hear from her and I waited and waited to get a photo with her. She was generous with her advice and her time, although I think I frightened her with my enthusiasm.
Morgan Kearns is the inexhaustible force behind the the Buildin' the Dream Convention. She's a bundle of organized energy that lines up dozens of workshops in a multitude of categories that allows authors in every stage of their career to choose workshops that allow them to learn and grow and further their career while networking with their peers.
As if that isn't impressive enough, Morgan is an Emmy-nominated journalist and an author of multiple books including the popular and her award winning Deadlines and Diamonds series.
These two ladies are Gail Delaney and Jenifer McConnell Ranieri and together, they own and operate Dessert Breeze Publishing. Representing more than 100 authors, these two ladies help authors find success they're unlikely to find on their own. From the perfect cover art to professionally edited manuscripts, Dessert Breeze Publishing is first choice for many top authors.
Signings are some of the best times. Some are done alone and some are done in conjunction with author authors. The two ladies above are Maggie Rivers and C Deanne Rowe, two friends and authors who were kind enough so share their table at the Ankeny Authorfest in 2014. The show at the top of these three is a show I did early in 2014 in Ames, just prior to Easter. The other event was held in Moline, Illinois and my husband was kind enough to accompany me on that visit.
This little gem was taken at one of the writer's retreats that we writers are so fond of. Periodically, we check into a hotel suite with a conference room attached and lock ourselves in with our computers, the basic necessities such as coffee, wine, candy, and take out, and then we write. When you're surrounded by writers who are writing, you can't really make an excuse for not staying on task and when you get stuck on one of those tricky passages, you've got a room full of very talented people at your disposal to get you right back on track. If you've never done this, I highly recommend it.