|Me and Kate getting our coffee on.|
The publishers' spotlights were scattered throughout the retreat, and two of my publishers had them overlapping that morning. So I first hit the Total-E-Bound spotlight where owner Claire and publisher Nicki were announcing winners in their lovely British accents, and mingled with some of the other great TEB authors attending, including Carol Lynne and JP Bowie, two of the organizers of the retreat.
|With Poppy at the Dreamspinner spotlight.|
After the spotlights, I took four readers and went for a get-to-know-you lunch. It was great to sit and relax and have a bit less hectic visiting time with some of the attendees I might not have got to chat with otherwise. Definitely one of the highlights of the trip!
Knowing that it was going to be tight making it over to the riverboat after lunch, I had packed up what I needed for the booksigning into one of my rolling suitcases and took it along to lunch. So after we'd finished and lingered a bit, we were able to head right to the dock without going back to the hotel. Here are a few pics I had Marie Sexton take onboard.
|Um, Marie? Up here...|
|There you go!|
|Sharing my table with fellow Dreamspinner authors, including the wonderful Marguerite Labbe (right).|
I took about a half-hour after I got back to relax and clean up a bit (and unwind...I loved visiting with everyone, but wow, sensory overload after a while! I'm a stay-at-home mom, so it was a bit of a culture shock!). Then I had a brief business meeting with the publisher I edit for...poolside with a drink of course. That turned into chatting with whomever wandered up, and then it was past dinnertime so a few of us ordered in (yummy and extremely cheap Mexican), before it was time for the TEB pretzel party hosted by Carol Lynne and TA Chase. I must admit that I got chatting with someone who shall remain nameless and so the event was more than half over by the time I made an appearance. Sorry ladies!
Time to head out for the evening and I found myself in the company of Amber Kell and her husband, and Stephani Hecht and her sister, Jackie, whom everyone was totally enamored of. Here are some shots of us wandering Bourbon Street.
|Jackie and Stephani picking out just the right test-tube shots.|
|Bottoms up! LOL at how many drinks are in this photo.|
|Ah, yes. The Hand Grenade. Stephani couldn't pass by a single souvenir glass.|
Without going into too much detail, it was finally decided we'd be better off letting other people do the moving around, so we grabbed a few more GRL'ers and some drinks to go and headed up to the balcony of my room...which happened to be right across from the balcony of Oz, the gay club whose nice thumpy music had lulled me to sleep the night before.
|Three well-behaved couples on the balcony at Oz. The naughty ones came later.|
Now, Steph and Amber and I all write MM romance. So the cute gay guys flirting and making out on the balcony across the way were getting tons of avid scrutiny and "awww"s from the three of us. At one point, Steph called her son, Cody, and was describing the scene to him. His response? "Mom, stay away from the railing." LOL!
We also had a very entertaining transgender and/or cross-dresser directing traffic in the intersection down below in a sparkly top and tight boy-shorts, with a whistle and a flogger. If people didn't move fast enough or follow directions (or if they were just saucy enough to ask for it--like Steph), she would smack their a$$ with the flogger or drape herself across the hood of the car. We watched her for hours.
Eventually everyone started drifting back to their own rooms and Trina turned in. I was about to do the same when I realized that I needed to be up and ready to head to the cemetery early...and I hadn't begun to stuff my swag bags for my attendees. So I worked on that for a bit (and really, I wasn't that sleepy anyway!), then I checked email for the first time. It was amazing to see that some of the authors and readers attending were actually posting on loops and blogs! More power to them! :)
Tomorrow I'll have Day Three for you: my cemetery tour, Damon's kilt, the vampire tour guide with the flask, and the Gay Bar Crawl...