Saturday, August 13, 2011

RomCon11 Recap

Oh dear heavens, where do I begin? Back in May, Ashley March bribed us with the promise of Blue Bell Ice Cream and Jenn LeBlanc bribed Jamie (For the Love of Romance), Rita (Not Another Romance Blog) and I with this:
Not fair right?! How can a girl say no to that?


I arrived at DEN 10-ish, went to go find my bags and on the way there, I found Jamie sitting at some chairs with luggage in hand. (I may or may not have mauled her) Turns out, Rita had missed her flight so we wouldn't get to see her until the afternoon. Boo! The ultra fabulous Jenn LeBlanc came to pick us up. There was so much equipment in her borrowed SUV, we had to squeeze in. (Poor Ashley March had double pink eye.) Meeting Jenn was a total squee worthy moment!!! I'm taking a raincheck Ashley March!

We headed to the hotel to check in and there was a bit of a mix up with Jenn's room (the story can be found on her blog). After dropping off all of Jenn's equipment, we went up to ours. We got a little hungry so we ended up at Applebees, right down the street from the hotel, and the inappropriateness began. Jenn was commenting about how Applebees was a "family restaurant", so for the next half hour, the manager kept trying to convince us that it was more than that (the bar, jello shots, Applebees after dark).

After lunch, we met up with Brandy (B Renae Reads), Tiffany James, Heather and Melanie Sands (Book Reading Gals) and a few other ladies (sorry ladies, I'm not good with names). We registered and got a bag of awesome goodies (books, swag and a thing that looked like a butt plug--which ended up being a computer cleaner instead).

We picked up Rita around 4-ish and ended up doing dinner with some super fabulous authors. At my end of the table were Jamie, Rita, Robyn Carr, Tiffany James and a few other ladies (once again, sorry ladies I'm not good with names). And then... Delilah Marvelle walked up looking all cute and tiny and I nearly peed my pants. I have been a HUGE fan since MISTRESS OF PLEASURE.

Then... after waiting FOREVER, we went on a midnight run to the airport to pick up Derek Hutchins (our bribe) and to Wal-Mart to get a few forgotten things.

Woke up early to run on the treadmill in the workout room, went down to breakfast after a nice hot shower and waited FOREVER to get served. Jamie and I were eating and missed out on the Welcome to RomCon Event but Rita made it. Thank goodness!

Build A Hero was HA-LARIOUS! Jamie and I sat at the Time Travel/Historical table along with Heather (Book Reading Gals), Jenn, Ann Lethbridge and a few other ladies (once again, I apologize). We had to come up with a hero, fill out a worksheet of sorts, put it on a poster board and present it to the rest of the tables. Each table had a different sub-genre (erotic, historical, suspense, contemporary) and had to come up with a hero. Our table's hero was a highlander named Ewan MacGregor who had this amazing backstory (Heather, I need a draft of it in my inbox within the next month or so. Thanks!). Between brainstorming and lot of giggles, Jamie and I had the brilliant idea of bringing in Derek (who was already dressed up in a kilt since he was shooting with Kimberly Killion) as our visual. Of course we were called cheaters since our table had real live man flesh but hey! there were no rules as to how to win.

Kimberly Killion, Melissa Mayhue and Margaret Mallory held a historical panel featuring everyone's favorite: HIGHLANDERS! Well, at least one highlander: Brooks Johnson. There was little bit of trivia which resulted in quite a few books given away, a lot of giggles and many pictures taken. Each author talked about their latest releases and may have shared a few secrets along the way.

The Historical Tea featured authors: Delilah Marvelle, Mary Wine, Julia London, Eileen Dreyer, Isobel Carr, Jenn LeBlanc, Jade Lee, Robyn DeHart, Melissa Mayhue and Pamela Nowak. There were stacks of books at each place setting from the authors (old and new releases). We learned fun facts about each of the authors and had to guess which fact belonged to which author. There were delicious yummy looking cookies, cheesecake, brownies and an array of hot tea.

Melissa Schroeder's Luau was loads of fun. There was yummy food, more swag (A Little Harmless Sex related items), lei's, a Nook giveaway and a very good looking man in a sarong.

The Wild West Dinner was FUN! There was country music, a mechanical bull (I wore a skirt so that was a no-go), a dance floor, yummy food (pulled pork sandwiches, corn, chili, ribs, salad, beans...), some good looking cowboys and a place in the corner to dress up and take pictures. Did I mention there was a bar?!

Chocolate Mangasm totally got out of hand. It was such a closely guarded secret that I'm not sure I should reveal what happened behind closed doors. So here's an overview: sex games, dividing all attendees into SLUTS and VIXENS, a red dildo, word scramble, chocolate covered food, an auction and I brought a riding crop along.
Those are all the pictures I can show you without getting arrested. lol

I may or may not have had one drink too many the night before. Woke up at 3AM and worked out for 3 hours in the workout room (had a lot of pent up energy to burn).

The Victorian Fashion Show was absolutely stunning. The following authors dressed up in different Victorian clothes: Delilah Marvelle, DeeAnne Gist, Jade Lee, Mary Wine, Melissa Mayhue, Kimberly Killion, Beth Williamson, Ann Lethbridge and Amanda McCabe. We also got a demonstration on how a lady dressed for her day. Phew! That's a lot of clothing and who ever writes in their books that it was easy access when getting down and dirty may be taking some creative liberties. Seriously. Trying to wade through 20 pounds of clothing is NOT sexy.

The Historical Mixer was fun! We played the Who Am I game. As we walked in, we received a sticker on our back with a name and we had to go around the room, asking questions and figure out who we were. Then we had to find our other half. There were fun prizes that were given away and also won. We also got to interact with authors. A sort of author speed dating kind of thing where each one moved from table to table. Can I just say that I have a girl crush on Delilah Marvelle?

Strip A Hero was just, no words could describe it. Jade Lee, Jennifer Ashley/Allyson James and Kim Killion had written fun, giggle worthy stories and Brooks Johnson, Derek Hutchins and Christina LaFon acted them out.  I'm pretty sure this one was everyone's favorite. Let me clarify the whole Strip A Hero thing: no models were fully naked for the enjoyment of the audience, just shirtless.

After that, I finally hit The Wall and had to rest. I ended up resting for the rest of the day. Oopsie! I totally missed out on the Summer Sensation presented by Avon, the Blogger/Reviewer Party and the Pajama Jam. Who knew that it took only 2 days for me to be super exhausted?? Next year, I'll be fully prepared. Maybe stock up on those 5 hour energy drinks.

Yay for sleeping in! Made it in time for the Readers' Crown Awards Brunch. You could get your very own personalized omelet or even crepes, or just go on down the line and fill your plate up with fruit, granola, eggs, bacon and breakfast items.

Congrats to Olivia Cunning for winning Best First Book & Best Long Erotic Romance! (Both for Backstage Pass)
Congrats to Julie James for winning Best Long Contemporary Romance! (Something About You)
Congrats to Melissa Mayhue for winning Best Long Paranormal Romance! (A Highlander's Destiny)
Congrats to Abby Gaines for winning Best Romantic Novella! (One In A Million)
Congrats to Monica McCarty for winning Best Long Historical Romance! (The Chief)
Congrats to Cindy Gerard for winning Best Long Romantic Suspense (Risk No Secrets) and also to Brenda Novak (White Heat)! It was a tie!!!
Congrats to C.J Barry for winning Best Sci-Fi, Futuristic, Time Travel! (Body Master)
Congrats to Susan Crandall for winning Best Mainstream Women's Fiction! (Sleep No More)
Congrats to Holly Jacobs for winning Best Short Contemporary Romance! (One of A Kind Family)
Congrats to Aubrey Ross for winning Best Short Erotic Romance! (Winter)
Congrats to Kate Moore for winning Best Short Historical Romance! (To Tempt A Saint)
Congrats to Helen Brenna for winning Best Short Romantic Suspense! (Along Came A Husband)

After brunch came the RomCon Rumble. This was a free-for-all. Authors were signing official RomCon trading cards featuring one of their latest book covers, books that you brought to have signed, books that were provided by their publisher and had extras of. It was sort of an author speed dating thing. Olivia Cunning shared some super secret fun news regarding the Sinners series (which I can't divulge here but thought I'd tease... neener, neener), Delilah Marvelle invented gay people (according to all those haters out there--You go Delilah! Get down with your bad self =)! ), Jenn LeBlanc brought her Muse who signed some limited edition posters, Robyn Carr remembered Jamie's name and I couldn't get the nerve to walk up to Julie James and say hi (I'm a total blathering idiot and didn't need a repeat of what happened with Pamela Clare).

So, who's going to RomCon12? I'll see you there! Mark your calendars for June 22-24. Seriously, you don't want to miss out!
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