I seriously think the fates conspired to keep me from getting back to reality after 11 days on the road. How many flights does it take to get from Albuquerque, New Mexico to Raleigh, North Carolina? Trick question? I think I counted 5 legs! The good news is that I spent a great evening enjoying Venona Keyes’ hospitality (and a sushi dinner) in Chicago after I missed my connection home (they closed Midway and we got diverted to St. Louis because we were running out of fuel – oy!). But now that I’m back, I can tell you that I had the BEST time at Yaoicon and GayRomLit! What a blast! And boy oh boy, the two events were SO entirely different, but both were a ton of fun.
I had a fabulous time in Long Beach, California at the Westin for Yaoicon. Half-naked,hairy-assed angels being dragged around by leashes, horse head costumes, and a great crew from Dreamspinner Press including Amy Lane, Mary Calmes, Rhys Ford,
Nessa Warin, Gus Li, Eon de Beaumont, Lori Hawkins, E.m. Lynley, and Venona Keyes. I fangirled over Amy (all hail the queen of angst!), drooled over Mary’s gorgeous photos, and had a great time getting to know Nessa and Lori. I got to eyeball Rhys’ amazing tats, and she told me how to fluff my girls in my corset jacket! And next to Ariel Tachna, I’ve never seen anyone sell books as well as Venona – that woman could sell a butt plug to the Church Lady! Speaking of church ladies… don’t you know that there was a ladies’ church convention at the same time as Yaoicon. I think we scared a heck of a lot of those women with our crazy costumes and yaoi smut!
After Yaoicon ended on Sunday the 14th, I headed to New Mexico and the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino for GayRomLit 2012. I spent the first two days catching up on editing (“Aria” is scheduled to be released on December 24th!) by the pool. I had a great time at parties sponsored by the publishers and getting to know some of the other writers. I hardly met everyone, either – there were just so many people to meet! More fangirling for me, meeting Heidi Cullinan (whose book “Special Delivery” is one of my all-time favorites) and Cat Grant (who writes about the hottest BDSM I’ve ever read and, it turns out, loves opera).
I also hung out with the wonderful Hayley B. James and her bud Manda (who made the tastiest chocolate penises as swag!). Anel Viz regaled us all with great stories (most of which were at least R-rated), and I met some wonderful writers and readers from my neck of the woods, including Eden Winters (who’s a sweetheart). J.P. Barnaby was the life of the party in her sexy corset, Dianne Thies was a doll, Amy DiMartino’s energy was infectious, and Elisa Rolle put us all to shame with her stunning outfits from about every country imaginable. I ate breakfast with Andrew Grey and his sweetheart of a partner on several occasions, drooled over Ariel Tachna’s amazing dress for the Dreamspinner event, and watched native American dancers at another event. E.m., Venona and I shared a room and plenty of tequila (not to mention V’s incredible homemade granola). Signing autographs was so cool, and I was half-tempted to take a certain someone (John, you know who you are!) home in my suitcase. I’ve left out a dozen or six names of folks I met, I know!
All this to say, I’m sure you can tell how excited I am for GRL 2013 in Atlanta! And maybe this time, I’ll get up the nerve to sing a bit. *g* Now it’s back to reality, editing “Aria” and working on “Prelude” (Blue Notes #4) so I can get it to the publisher. Oh, and I think I need a serious diet after all the food and alcohol I consumed! Special thanks to E.m. Lynley, Amy DiMartino and Elisa Rolle for the photos in this post.
Peace, ya’ll! -Shira