Saturday was the last day of the RWA Orlando conference. It’s been a full and informative conference. I got a lot out of it and now have a long list of things to do when I return home. I’m excited to tackle my writing again and charge gung-ho on my self-publishing plans.

The first workshop this morning was one I’d marked as not to be missed. “Writing the Sweet Romance” presented by Susan Meier. She had an excellent handout of thirteen questions she answers to write her synopsis. She talked about how in a sweet romance trust has to replace the sex of other romances to develop the intimacy and relationship of the hero and heroine. I’d never thought of the romance arc in quite that way, so Ms. Meier gave me something to consider. I will certainly be using her handout to plan and revise my stories.

My last workshop was Data and Story taught by the CEO of Sourcebooks Publishing. From the description, I’d expected something a little different. This seemed more geared toward a publisher, but I found the information about positioning to be fascinating. The speaker showed several examples of covers that didn’t work. When the covers were changed, the sales took off. Same title and same story. The difference was whether the cover focused on the content of the story or creating an emotional reaction within the reader. When the cover evoked an emotional response, the reader bought. Considering how powerful the cover is to selling, it’s something important to consider when putting one together.

After last workshop came the tasks of checking out and locating where the airport shuttle would pick me up. My room had been very nice, with a beautiful view. All things that consumed the afternoon, but I was glad not to have to hurry. I had time for a late lunch at the food court.

My flight left Orlando at 5 o’clock for Houston and went smoothly. In Houston, I met up with Olga, an RWA member Rio Rancho who now had attended her first conference. The flight time passed quickly as she told me about what she’d learned and seen. We landed on time, and I picked up my car from the lot. I was home by 11 o’clock, which was one in the morning Orlando time. Tired but so happy to have gone to RWA.

The beautiful view from my hotel room.