Friday, August 15, 2008

A "Fangirl" Moment with author Christopher Moore

I've been sifting through my memories and my photos of this year's RWA conference, and I wanted to share another one of the highlights. On Friday night, August 1st, my publisher party was held at the Mandarin Hotel in San Francisco. Always a swanky affair, it's also great fun, with fabulous food, wine, champagne, and, of course, chocolate. :-) (The photo on the left is me with my editor, Erika Tsang, during the cocktail reception.)

One of the highlights for me is finding out who'll I'll be sitting with - you don't know the seating arrangement until you get there. One year I was stunned to find myself between two of my favorite authors, Susan Elizabeth Phillips and Julianne MacLean. Last year I sat next to the irrepressible Julie Ann Long and the gorgeous Kathryn Caskie, and this year I was thrilled to be sitting next to my editor, Erika Tsang, and RITA award-winning YA author, Melissa Marr. (The photo on the left is Julianne MacLean and Toni Blake - it looks like we all got the memo on color coordination, doesn't it?)

But I must admit, the highlight of the evening for me (no offense to my lovely seatmates or anyone else I chatted with!), was when Executive Editor Carrie Feron introduced one of our special guests for the evening, author Christopher Moore. If you've never read Chris's particular brand of quirky fiction, you're missing out on some serious giggles. Think Dave Barry meets Stephen King, without the gore. Seriously. I admit I made a total "fangirl" of myself, going straight up to him and demanding that he not disappear before I'd had my picture taken with him! (I'd forgotten my camera, but Toni Blake graciously agreed to be the appointed photographer for the evening, so I was in luck. Thanks, Toni!) Quite the gentleman, Chris asked my name because he "didn't want to stare in the direction of my nametag too long", and assured me that he'd love to get his picture taken with "someone so pretty". Wasn't that sweet? So after dinner, I rounded up Toni and Kathy Caskie (another CM fangirl, on the right), and we got our photos taken with Chris. Yay! At the end of the evening, I flirted with him shamelessly across a crowded room by giving him the universal "call me" signal, hoping he knew I was just kidding! And yes, I confessed my "fangirl" flirtatiousness to Captain America when I got back to the hotel room. Knowing my love of all things Moore, he forgave me. :-)

After the Avon Family Dinner at the Mandarin, I grabbed a cab and headed over to the famed Harlequin Party at the Four Seasons Hotel. Here I am with some of my wonderful friends from Writers At Play: (l to r) Harlequin Intrigue author Kathleen Long, Harlequin Superromance author Beth Andrews, Mills & Boon Medical author Janice Lynn, and future Harlequin Special Edition author Anna Sugden. As you can probably tell, a fabulous time was had by all. :-) The Harlequin party lived up to it's reputation - a killer DJ, open bar, hundreds of barefoot women dancing and laughing, even a conga line! It was great fun, and I can't wait to do it again next year!

P.S. - Thanks for being such a gentleman, Chris. I'm usually the shy, retiring type. Seriously. :-)

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