In a little more than a week, I leave for my first official romance writing conference. And it’s a big one. Perhaps even the biggest one.
I’m talking, of course, about the Romance Writers of America National Conference.
Writers come from all over the world to attend. The romance writing heavyweights will be out in force—Nora Roberts, Gena Showalter, Jude Deveraux, Marie Force, Jennifer Crusie—the list goes on and on and on.
Plus, editors and agents from every publishing house and agency (both major and minor) interested in romance will be there.
And, Internet? I’m more than a little nervous.
I mean, sure, I’ve been to my share of conferences. As a blogger, I attended BlogHer three years in a row. And that conference, during that time? Was simply amazeballs.
But this is a whole new world. And I’m not entirely sure where I fit.
I am a published author. In fact, I’m a Harlequin author. No, damn it, I’m a multi-published Harlequin author. As such, I have every right to be there.
But I don’t feel like I’ve earned my place yet.
What will it take for me to feel like I belong? I’m not sure.
Another book deal would help, of course. But before I can get that, I have to finish and sell the manuscript I’m currently working on. Which, since the line I wrote for closed, isn’t as easy as it sounds.
But don’t you worry, I will. I will get another book deal. And someday I will make it to the bestseller lists.
I just have to get over these growing pains first.
So, what’s the point of this post? Basically, it’s just me, psychically bleeding on the Internet. I can’t help it—it’s what I do. What I have done since I wrote my first blog post in 2008.
But it’s also a reminder. Whoever you are, wherever you are in life, remember to do something that scares the shit out of you every once in a while. Something you’re not sure you can pull off. Something you could (if you’ll excuse my French) completely fuck up.
There’s no better way to remind yourself that you’re alive.
And when you come out the other side, completely unscathed? You’ll stand a little taller. Feel a little stronger. And you’ll know that you are capable of absolutely anything.
(And if you see me standing alone and looking awkward at the conference? Please say hi. I’m an excellent conversationalist. I’m just not good at making the first move.)