Thursday, April 19, 2012

RT Roundup

I'm home! We had such a stunning view coming in to land yesterday morning - I think the approach to Auckland Airport (above) is one of the most beautiful in the world. Once, I even saw horses running in the paddock below!

My first RT Convention was a wonderful experience. It's a very friendly, laid-back convention, and all the readers I spoke to - whether they were newbies like me, or regular attendees - said they'd loved it. So it's definitely something to check out if it'll be in your neck of the woods, even if you only go to the book signing on Saturday. I believe next year's location is Kansas City.

This year, of course, it was in Chicago - and here's a shot of the Chicago skyline from my hotel room.

I saw so many people over the week, old friends and new, and when I was downloading the photos, I realized I took hardly any. Like at the Aussie/Kiwi dinner I attended the night I got there, and at the breakfast I had with several of the other Berkley authors the next day - it was a fantastic start to the convention. So apologies to anyone I forget to mention - there was so much happening, it's all a bit of a blur.

Onto the photos I did actually take!

This one's from when I had lunch with Ilona and Gordon Andrews, Jeaniene Frost, and the camera-shy Shiloh Walker. I'd met Jeaniene before, but it was my first time meeting Ilona and Gordon. While I always knew Ilona was from Russia, I never quite thought about the fact that she might have a Russian accent. She does! And it's adorable!

After lunch, Jeaniene and I were on a panel with Charlaine Frost (who is incredibly nice). We had a blast, and I think the audience did, too - so many people attended that the hotel staff had to enlarge the room by folding back a wall. So as someone said, we literally brought down the wall! The moderator Morgan Doremus, was brilliant. You can read a detailed writeup of the panel on the RT blog.

Not that day, but the day prior, I also had a chance to talk to the great group of booksellers and librarians attending RT. It was a fun chat, and the Q&A session went by super fast.

This shot was taken in the Red Bar which was meeting central for pretty much everyone. I met this fantastic group of readers in there and had a wonderful time chatting with them. 

This is a picture of Julie James' divine chocolate cake. I have no photo of Julie, but really, it's all about the cake. Julie found out she hit the NYT and USA Today bestseller lists while at the convention, so it was awesome being able to celebrate with her. (I split a chocolate ice-cream bar with Sarah from SBTB and it was delish.)

What is this you say? It's the light fixture above the elevator bank at the Hyatt Regency O'Hare! How fabulous is it?!

I took the above shot before the Giant Book Fair started on Saturday. That's why you can see all that space. Trust me, it wasn't there after the doors opened! I was placed between JR Ward and James Rollins. I had a chance to chat to JR Ward before the signing and she was just lovely. Her mom was also there, and she's a wonderful lady to talk to - especially since she loved the red shoes I wore to the RT Awards Ceremony. ;-)

The signing itself was insanity! Of the best kind! I heard from readers that some of them had been in line since six a.m. (the signing started at 10.45am) to make sure they got to the front of the queue and met their favorite authors. I have been told my line was just a wee bit crazy, but I couldn't actually see it as I was sitting down, signing. I appreciated every one of you who came! I had a brilliant time talking with you all.

Here is a photo from the signing that RT tweeted. I am obviously in very intense conversation (probably about the Ghost!). Talking of the Ghost, that was the topic I was quizzed on the entire convention. One reader sprung the question on me without warning at the signing - I think she was hoping I would just spit it out. Lol!

I have to give a special shout out to all around cool person Angela James who stayed with me for two hours, helping to manage the line. She handed out sticky-notes to everyone to make sure I spelled names correctly...and I still managed to get one wrong (gah!). However, that book is now one of a kind, because I drew a brilliant artistic picture to cover up my error. *grin*

I saw this board toward the end of the convention, and thought it was such a fun idea. If you click on the shot, you can enlarge it. Basically, it asked people to share the names of their favorite characters.

And last but very much not least, at the RT Awards, I was honored to be presented with a Career Achievement Award for Paranormal Romance. Kiss of Snow also won the RT Reviewer's Choice Award for Best Paranormal Romance.

There is so much I haven't mentioned *cough-shopping spree with Angela and Jane-cough* so if you were there, feel free to jump in!

Oh, one more thing - lots of people asked me how long it took to fly to Chicago, so here it is: from Auckland to Los Angeles, it's approx 13 hours. From Los Angeles to Chicago, it's about 4. So 17-18 hours actual flight time. Add in the layovers and travel time to get to and from the airport, and we're talking well over twenty-four hours. 

However, there is an upside to all the traveling. I've had Cooper and Grace's story in my head for a while now, and I wrote some scenes during the convention, but yesterday and today, while I was waiting for flights, and during the trip itself, I started working on it in earnest and did something like seventeen thousand words. It's all very rough, but I'm fairly certain this is going to be a courtship story - let's just say Coop's got some moves.


neia said...

Sounds like you had fun! And I can't wait to read Grace/Cooper's story (and I'm so glad Adria/Riaz's book is coming soon!) I've already reread all of your books several times since KOS was published while waiting for this one

Soraya Lane - Romance Author said...

Sounds like you had a fab time! Congrats again on the two RT Awards - very much deserved :)

I'm hoping I'll be able to attend an RT Convention one day ... once my books start making me money!


Anonymous said...

Congratulations on the RT awards!!!

So excited for Cooper & Grace's novella too! I've been intrigued by them since you mentioned them back in Play of Passion.

Anonymous said...

I was very lucky to be towards the beginning of your line. And while I was waiting I picked up a freebie notepad thing that I had a bunch of people sign, so I count it a plus! My goal is to make it to next years convention and hopefully do the entire thing instead of just the book fair.

A little advice to any readers wanting to attend the book fair. You will need a bag of some sort to carry all the free stuff they hand out. If it's a bag with wheels that you can drag behind you, it'll make it even better :)

I really enjoyed meeting you, Nalini, and hope that both of us make it next year!


Anonymous said...

Congratulations on your well deserved awards. How rewarding and exciting. Sounds like you had a wonderful time. Thank you for sharing.

lovehina154 said...

Wish I could have come and meet you but I had class that day. I will see you in June I believe your coming up here to NY. Will be counting down the days.

Diane said...

So glad you had an awesome time, the pictures are great.
Now back to work on Cooper!!!!

Olsonmiki said...

Hi, Nalini! My son lived in Chicago for a couple of years, and we took the train from Minneapolis/St. Paul to his wedding to his fabulous wife. It took us eight hours, due to flooding on the tracks and competing traffic, so really, thirteen hours from the other side of the globe doesn't seem so bad!

Shawna Thomas said...

Congratulations on the RT award. I so wanted to be there! Next year: Kansas City. : )

Helen Lowe said...

Sounds fabulous, Nalini--and congratulations! I agree re the approach to Auckland airport too. :)

Brie said...

You know you're a romance fan when you recognize pretty much all the names on that board! ;-) Congrats on the awards, you deserve them and I'm sure many more will come. And congrats on the chocolate cake, I think I'm more jealous about it than about the convention, don't judge!

Sajida said...

Congratulations!! God I wish I was of these days!!

Anonymous said...

Congratulations Nalini!
Go ahead with Grace and Cooper;)))


mbot565 said...

Congratulation on a well deserved award. Hope you'll be in San Diego one day.

ST said...

Nalini, there is a picture of you on Ilona's website. ;)

azteclady said...




for Tangle of Needs

Just sayin'

Anonymous said...

Congrats on the awards!!

Gretting from Spain

Sherri L. said...

It looks like it was alot of fun and that cake looked awesome. lol Congradulations on your awards Nalini. I'd love to read grace and cooper's story. Glad you're thinking and writing about them. Can't wait for tangle of need and archangel's storm to come out.

Nalini Singh said...

@lovehina154 - I'm actually going to be in LA in July, not NY. But I'm sure I'll be back in NY one of these days :)

Anonymous said...

Wow congrats and looking forward to Cooper and Grace's story already ha although getting super excited for Tangle of Needs to come out

Liz C said...

Congratulations for the award Nalini, glad you had a good time, looks like it was fun. Happy to hear about Grace and Cooper- I can't wait to hear their story- also getting impatient for tangle of need- I really want it now

amandakgc said...

I saw me in the pic with my fellow reader friends!! Again, it was a honor and pleasure meeting you. You are one of the nicest people I've ever met. I didn't even notice the chandelier, I was to busy looking for authors. Congrats on the award! See ya next year in Kansas City!!

fishgirl182 said...

sounds like you had an amazing time. and it's always about the cake. :) i hope i get to see you at rwa this summer and that your line isn't too insane. have a wonderful weekend!

Under the Covers said...

Congrats on the awards of course well deserved! It was great hanging out with you (that's me on the left in the reader pic) You are truly one of the sweetest people I've ever met!!