Okay, not totally terrible, but I went down to the Dolphin lobby early because I wanted to meet people, find someone to chat with, you know, hang with lovely romance writers.

Well, it turns out that if you have a computer in front of you and your fingers are flying across the keys, people “think” you’re working and they leave you alone. I was sitting on a sofa at the back of a conversational grouping of seats. A woman sat down in a chair next to the sofa, but oa the other end. I smiled but she was on the phone and I just went back to my book. Then, kinda big name author (whose name will be redacted because I’m not stupid and I won’t burn bridges) came by. She and the other woman commented on how impressed they were that I was working, then they proceeded to have what sounded like a fun conversation together. Now and then I would look up – I had told them I was spending more time watching people go by than actually writing – and glance their way, but while one or the other of them would look at me, I wasn’t actually included in the conversation.

Then more big names came by to speak to the big name near me. They all hugged. And squealed. And Ooohed and Aaahed over each other’s clothes.

And they all got introduced to the woman that first sat down.

But not to me, since no one had actually asked me anything.

I began to wonder if this was going to be a boring, lonely conference. My roommate, as I think I mentioned, isn’t a romance reader or writer, but she is a writer and she is interested in meeting and networking, but I wanted to meet and chat with other romance people.

Later, however, I went to the room where the Literacy signing was going to take place to volunteer to help set up.

I walked back and forth and around a literal Disney sized ballroom for two hours, including putting RITA finalist flags at the spaces for about 50 authors (out of 500). The authors were seated alphabetically by last name (Duh) but the list of finalists was alphabetical by FIRST name, so I went from the As to the Ws then back to the Fs and then to the Ms and so forth for probably an hour!

I was tired and about 1.5 hours before the signing, I went back to my room to relax.

Then I went to the signing. I had a list in my head of authors I know personally that I wanted to see and my ego was stroked big time!!

Terri Brisbin sat next to me at a book signing at New Jersey Romance Writers in 2004 and she was SO nice to me, a new, unknown epubbed author (back before Kindle told everyone was ebooks are), and she jumped up when she saw my name tag and was thrilled to see me.

Ditto Alyssa Day from whom I’d taken a Chick Lit writing online class when she was writing as Alesia Holiday and Jax Abbott. She also sent my daughter a copy of her second Jax Abbott book.

Anyway, it ended up being great for my ego.