In a moment of pure insanity, yes I did it. Yes, I volunteered, for the 5th year running, to help scare up authors for my library's literary event next April. Then I proceeded to spend a fair amount of time banging my head against my desk in my wee lil' office cubicle. This year proved to be a challenge on the romance front, because I realized recently that the RT Convention, which will be in L.A. this next year, is the same weekend as my library's event. Sigh. Granted my library's wing-ding is one day (an all day affair, but we don't ask authors to "commit" beyond their panel discussion and booksigning session) - but finding authors willing to break away from RT proved to be a little tricky. But I did! I persevered! And I gotta say, I think the romance panel is gonna be all sorts of awesome. Here's who we've got lined up:
Zoe Archer, who will be talking about her new Victorian historical/adventure/fantasy series, The Blades Of The Rose. "Adventure stories" are a bit of a rare bird in the romance genre, so I'm really excited to have Zoe on our panel. Also, there's been a bit of "time off" for her between releases - and I always like to mix in some "publishing stuff" into these panels - if only to give readers the inside scoop. You'd be amazed how many people think that getting your book published = set for life! Ha!
Laura Wright, who has written a slew of books for Silhouette Desire, but has a new vampire series kicking off for Signet in October. I keep hearing from various corners that "vampires are dead" (no pun intended) - but then I see these books flying off the shelves at many libraries and think "Yeah, sure they are." And in a bit of perfect timing, the second book in this series is slated for an April release.
Judy Duarte, who I was happy to find after two other authors turned me down because of RT. And in a bit of good fortune, Judy signing on makes this panel a hugely interesting mix of books and styles. Her single titles for Kensington are in the vein of "inspirational women's fiction" and she writes "home and hearth" type books for Silhouette Special Edition.
So we have historical fantasy adventure, sexy vampires, and feel-good home and hearth. One thing is for sure, my "homework reading" for this panel shouldn't be boring! Also, it should be scads of fun to come up with discussion questions for the panelists. I've had some great panels in the past, with lots of variety, but I think I might have hit it out of the park with this one. Of course I won't know for sure until April.
In other news? We got us some kickass mystery/suspense folks as well. Christopher Reich, Paul Levine, Dianne Emley, Barbara Hambly, Jeri Westerson, just to name a few. Now all I need to figure out is what I'm going to do about RT. I'm still going to put in an appearance, just not sure when and for how many days. Because being anywhere near L.A. that Saturday is definitely out of the question now.