NESCBWI 2013 Conference

If you followed the #nescbwi13 tweets, you might have noticed it was a fan-freaking-tastic conference. A few of the highlights . . .
(Click names to follow everyone on twitter or see their websites. No really, follow them all.)

Thursday: I had a long drive, so I got there a day early and finally got to meet the fabulous Jen in person! We talked all day, until after midnight- way past her bedtime.

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Friday: Let’s see, there was lunch and running into the super sweet Quinlan Lee, volunteering at the registration desk, a couple great sessions, then dinner with a big table of twitter peeps and blue board friends. Then we met up with friends in the bar, including the endlessly entertaining agent Linda Epstein, bonding over some interesting conversation and of course, chocolate. We also got to briefly meet Lauren McLeod and Brooks Sherman. The stuff agent legends are made of, right? Stayed up until way past Jen’s bedtime. Again.

Saturday: Saturday started with breakfast, then more great sessions, lunch, more sessions, book signing, and then a dinner for the volunteers. All good. So good. (And btw, volunteering is a great way to help out and get more out of a conference.)

The keynote by Sharon Creech? Insightful. Heartfelt. Inspiring. She got not one, but TWO standing ovations. We would have stood up a third time if she came out for an encore. Grace Lin also shared her story and her beautiful illustrations. And can I just tell you about the line-up of amazing authors at this conference?! Erin Dionne. Linda Urban. Kate Messner. Hilary Weisman Graham. Jo Knowles. The list goes on.

Then we attended a panel with Brenda Reeves Sturgis, Emma Dryden, and Karen Grencik. From there we joined in the wine and cheese mingle and yup, there was plenty more chatting and laughing. Maybe a bit more laughing. It might have gone on for quite a while, actually. The famous Jennifer Laughran and fantabulous author Dawn Metcalf even joined us for a bit. But it didn’t end there, folks.

When you’re hanging out with such a great group of writers, you can’t just go to sleep. (Although a couple did sneak away. *clears throat* Ronni. *fake cough* Monica T.) photo

Kip and Minnesota Monica were kind enough to host a little after-party where there may or may not have been some toasting and jumping on the beds. I admit to nothing, except still being a kid at heart. And once again, poor Jen didn’t get to bed early, although she gave it a valiant effort.

Sunday: We sacrificed breakfast to sleep in a little, then there were more sessions, lunch, tearful goodbyes, and the last of the sessions. Finally, I hit the road, getting home in time to put the kids to bed. :)

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So, who ARE these fabulous writers I speak of?
(clockwise from top left)

Jen M. I absolutely adore her. She is just as sweet, smart, and fun in real life!

Marcy Kate. We bonded because we’re both allergic to alcohol. Go figure. She’s also a brilliant writer.

Jennifer CE. She added quite a bit of laughter to our group.

Minnesota Monica. This is a lady with a contagious laugh and a sunny spirit.

Me. I’m smiling because, how could I not?

Taryn. She was the youngest of the group, yet so mature and TALENTED. Holy cow. Love her.

Kip. She is so full of goodness you can’t help wanting to be around her. Plus, everyone seemed to know her. “Oh, you know Kip? Yeah, me too.”

Ghenet. She is my curly-hair-twin who shares a love of photography. And so sweet.

Ronni. A fellow vegetarian with a smile that lights up a room.

Monica T. (not pictured) She’s a great lady who helped make the weekend one of the best. Obvs. For realz.

I met so many other great people, so please forgive me if I don’t list you here. I loved meeting you and I look forward to keeping in touch.

And of course, a HUGE thank you to Kris and Joyce for organizing such a wonderful event. Your hard work definitely paid off!

Start saving now, ladies and gents because #nescbwi14 will most certainly be a blast. Really. Get a piggy bank. Open a savings account. Put an envelope under the mattress. (It’s one of the best values you’ll find for a writing conference!) You’re going to want to be there. :)

In the words of Minnesota Monica, “It’s not goodbye, it’s ‘I’ll see you on twitter’.” 

32 comments:

  1. Awwwwwww! I miss you guys already! Now the question is, should my blog post include the photo of the bed-jumping? :-)

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  2. I have no idea what you're talking about. ;)
    Where's Monica T. in case we need legal advice?

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  3. Great wrap up, Dee! And I really enjoyed talking to you over lunch...or was that dinner? I can't remember the meal, but I remember our convo! I'm def hanging in the bar next year...so bummed I missed it!

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    1. Yes, it was a great talk! We will drag you to the bar if necessary. :)

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  4. Looks like you had a great time! I really should have gotten out of the back seat when we got there instead of hiding. ;) I will have to make plans for next year, because it killed me to see all your tweets and know I missed out.

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    1. Oops, did I leave you in there? ;) Yes, next year!! I must meet you!!

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  5. Squeee!!!! *tackles Dee* I had so much fun with you!!!! I want to go to all the conferences with this group. Because: "acascuse me" and pink champagne and side-splitting laughs and sponge candy and bed jumping and...

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    1. That's right, I forgot to add in a Pitch Perfect viewing. Acasorry about that.

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  6. Lovely recap!! Thanks for sharing. I hope next time, I'll be there not only in spirit but in flesh too!! :D
    <33

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  7. I wish I could have been there! But thanks for the awesome recap-now I almost feel like I was. :-)

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    1. Either you go next year, or I will be forced to bring a big cardboard cutout of you so you're at least in all the pictures.

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  8. I am so coming to this next year. *dusts off piggy bank*

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  9. Sounds like a great time. Just couldn't scrounge up the money this year, but I kept wishing I was there all weekend! I'm glad it all went well!

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    1. Hi, Faith. Thanks for stopping by to read about it. Maybe we'll see you there next year. :)

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  10. I'm SO glad we met and got to hang out this weekend. You're super sweet toooo! (And thanks for all the curly hair tips!) It was a fantastic first NESCBWI conference and I can't wait to do it again next year!

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  11. So much fun, so much knowledge, and so great to meet in person! It was hard to come back to a day job and laundry... BUT at least at home there's no bacon in my broccoli salad! ;)

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    1. Ronni, you saved me from Bacon!! How can I ever repay you?!

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    2. We veg's have to look out for each other! :)

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  12. Wow, what a line-up! And it's so cool you got to meet all those friends in person. A conference isn't in our budget this year, but I'm shooting for next year!

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  13. So sweet. Thanks for sharing. My goal to attend a conference SOON! I better save up. And you met two of my betas--I haven't even met in person.
    I appreciate this post. Lucky girls!

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    1. I know Jen is one. Who is the other beta?

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  14. Ronnie joined us!! And we both have budding marine biologists as off spring.

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  15. Oh my goodness, I'm in awe. It's like a never-ending slumber party of writers. So. Fun. <3 Thrilled you finally got to meet.

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    1. That's a great description. lol Maybe they should put that on the website next year. :)

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  16. Dee!!! Your smiling face and enthusiastic hello at the registration table absolutely made my newbie jitters go away -- and throughout the weekend too! So glad to finally meet you IRL!!! What a fantastic weekend -- already saving up for next year!

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    1. This comment totally made my day. :) I loved meeting you!

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