How to Go From Anxiety to Anticipation in Six Easy Years (Or Why I Love GayRomLit)
First year, you tremble and shake and sometimes get downright lightheaded when one of your favorite authors walk by. Too scared to talk to anyone unless you’re drinking beer, then you meet lots of wonderful folks. Come back with a new tattoo.
Second year, look behind to make sure you’re the person they’re talking to when an attendee squeals, “I LOVE your book!” Suitcase falls apart, talk a kind soul into taking you to the nearest Walmart (which might be in another time zone.) Recognize folks you hung out with the year before. Drink beer. New friends take you out to see the city. Come back with a new tattoo.
Third year, squeal for two straight days while you get reacquainted with THE BEST FOLKS EVER! Work up the nerve to read a scene involving two characters debating sex and bacon to an audience. Dance with lots of folks. Drink beer. Show the friends you’ve made in the past two conventions around the venue because it’s in your stomping grounds. Introduce roommate to the wonders of tattoos. Hug everyone within reach and cry when you have to leave.
Fourth year, visit Chicago for the first time, dance with lots of folks, drink beer from a wine glass because drinking from the bottle doesn’t quite go with your formalwear. Come back with a new tattoo. Roommate does too. Miss everyone until the next year.
Fifth year, despair because scheduling conflicts mean you can’t attend. Friends bring you back swag.
Sixth year, keep checking the calendar, asking, “Are we there yet?” and counting the days until you can be with your tribe once more. Planning next tattoo.
Wow! I can’t believe six years have gone by—six years of friends, good times, and happy memories. And here I am getting together books and swag to once again head for my favorite convention. This year I’m taking a few more vacations days from my day job to have more time to hang out.
The great thing about GRL is that I get to be both writer and fangirl, and the friends I meet there don’t stop being friends once we all go home. Now, we stay in touch via e-mail, Twitter, Facebook, and smaller regional meetups.
And all kidding aside, although there are great parties (and tattoos if you want), the heart of GRL is a group of individuals who love books, love our genre, and share an immediate bond. Stepping into the hotel each year for this event feels like coming home—even if you’ve never before been to that venue.
So if you’ve never attended GRL before but plan to this year, put your nerves to rest. We’re a big happy family who’ll be overjoyed to see you. If you’ve never attended, I’d like to encourage you to do so. So, “Hey y’all” to both those I’ve attended with before and friends I’ve yet to meet, and if you’re there this year, prepare to be hugged.
And check out my new tattoo.
This year will be a bit different for me because several of my novels have now been published in different languages. Duet is now available in English, Italian, French, and on August 28, German. It’s also an audiobook!
Although it won’t be published by October, I’m hard at work on the sixth Diversion novel: Reunion. The first book in the series, Diversion (Diversion 1) has been released in English, French, and Japanese, so I hope to have translated copies with me in Kansas City.
Diversion was originally intended as a standalone, but the characters had stories left to tell. I’m planning at least two more after the current work in progress. More Lucky and Bo!
There are good guys, bad guys, and then there’s Lucky.
Former drug trafficker Richmond “Lucky” Lucklighter flaunts his past like a badge of honor. He speaks his mind, doesn’t play nice, and flirts with disaster while working off his sentence with the Southeastern Narcotics Bureau. If he can keep out of trouble a while longer he’ll be a free man–after he trains his replacement.
Textbook-quoting, by the book Bo Schollenberger is everything Lucky isn’t. Lucky slurps coffee, Bo lives caffeine free. Lucky worships bacon, Bo eats tofu. Lucky trusts no one, Bo calls suspects by first name. Yet when the chips are down on their shared case of breaking up a drug diversion ring, they may have more in common than they believe.
Two men. Close quarters. Friction results in heat. But Lucky scoffs at partnerships, no matter how thrilling the roller-coaster. Bo has two months to break down Lucky’s defenses… and seconds are ticking by.
Find the English version of Diversion at Amazon:
Find the French translation at MXM Bookmark:
Diversion in Japanese translation:
About the Author: You will know Eden Winters by her distinctive white plumage and exuberant cry of “Hey, y’all!” in a Southern US drawl so thick it renders even the simplest of words unrecognizable. Watch out, she hugs!
Driven by insatiable curiosity, she possibly holds the world’s record for curriculum changes to the point that she’s never quite earned a degree but is a force to be reckoned with at Trivial Pursuit.
She’s trudged down hallways with police detectives, learned to disarm knife-wielding bad guys, and witnessed the correct way to blow doors off buildings. Her e-mail contains various snippets of forensic wisdom, such as “What would a dead body left in a Mexican drug tunnel look like after six months?” In the process of her adventures she has written fourteen m/m romance novels, has won several Rainbow Awards, was a Lambda Awards Finalist, and lives in terror of authorities showing up at her door to question her Internet searches.
When not putting characters in dangerous situations she’s a mild-mannered business executive, mother, grandmother, vegetarian, and PFLAG activist.
Her natural habitats are airports, coffee shops, and on the backs of motorcycles.
Visit me at:
See y’all at GRL, and thank you, Elisa, for having me on your site today.
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