Tag Archives: RWA

Workshops Worth the Time

Jillian here. I had a super experience last weekend in Birmingham, Alabama. I belong to the Southern Magic chapter of RWA and they hosted the fabulous Deb Dixon from Belle Books/Belle Bridge Books in two workshops (which were really three). Friday night, she focused on “The Slippery Slope” – which is the big black moment. MAN! I always had a different idea in my head about what exactly that was- I tried to make it way more than it is- not that it isn’t vital but I had a basic misunderstanding of how it actually could be something more subtle than I was making it. I loved how she explained it and I think I have a much better handle on it.

In fact, one of my crit partners was asking me about my story I’m polishing right now last week and wanted to know why I had what happened occur. I said it was the black moment and she said it didn’t  have to be that black.  LOL.  I get what she meant by that comment now.

On Saturday, Ms. Dixon talked about “Goal, Motivation and Conflict” as well as “The Hero’s Journey.”   She broke each of these down into elements and really, really hit us with some wonderful information. Every single word she said over the 10 hours she stood at the podium talking was a golden nugget of information. No one wanted to leave the room to even take care of biological needs.  LOL – I was so impressed with her. Such a great speaker. She related a lot of her talk to movie plots and man, she made the material come alive. And what a great way to teach – the examples made the lessons make sense on a core level.

“The Hero’s Journey” is a 12 step story-telling guideline based on mythology. Most all stories have some elements of this guide. Written by Christopher Volger. This is used as Deb’s jumping off point for her talk.

Ms. Dixon wrote the book called “Goal, Motivation and Conflict” and I recommend that for your writing took kit.

If you are ever in a position to attend any of her workshops, run. Don’t walk, RUN! toward that workshop. It is so worth the time you spend. The fee wasn’t that high and I’ve paid way more to learn waaay, waaay less.

I’m Home! And a Bit of a Rant.

Jillian here. I was at the Romantic Times convention in New Orleans (didn’t get to meet Marie- alas)- and had a great time for the most part. It was awesome to see old friends and to meet some I hadn’t known before in person. I also was able to connect to some readers who I have been chatting with on social media. That part was awesome to the max.

The bad thing was the way the organization split the writers in the book signing and the way they ushered readers to the NY published authors. We all paid the same fees to be there and we were treated horribly. They had the NY pubbed people on the left and the small/medium presses and indies to the right. I am small and medium press published and two of my publishers sponsored events at this convention and yet we were shuffled off to the side. We didn’t even have any customers for the first 45 mins of the book fair.

As the volunteers let people in, they ushered them to the NY side and even told some people not to go into the other room as it was the “overflow” room- I even heard one person was telling people that the published writers were to the left and the aspiring authors were to the right.  HELLO??? It was unreal. I had one lady who had already bought my book and brought it from home to get me to sign it and she finally found me- she was upset as she didn’t know if she ever would. And I heard from someone else that they never did find me. So, how many sales did we in the other room lose out on? I won’t be going back unless this changes.

RWA already treats us non-NY pubbed writers as persona non grata and now RT does as well? Makes you think, doesn’t it? Makes me sad/mad at the same time. One NY pubbed gal I know said she didn’t see a problem with the way they did the split. I told her that was exactly like the days of “separate but equal”- the white folks didn’t see anything wrong with it because they were the elite. Harsh? Maybe, but I think the analogy works.

I had a dream last night that Lavada was in_ I think I was fretting over being late to blog (haha)_ anyway, she was trying to help me sew (which I CANNOT do at all) and when I got frustrated, I said, “I can’t do this like everyone else so I quit.”

I think that was a psychological leftover from being treated as a second class citizen at RT. What do you think?


I’m relatively new at professional pedicures- I’m odd in that I don’t like to be touched- especially by people I don’t know. I fought for many years going to have a pedicure also because I’m very ticklish as well but a bit over a year ago when I was visiting my cousin in Texas, she insisted that I go with her and have one done. I had no idea that they rubbed all that stuff all over your calves and legs. It was kind of nice but still a little weird.


So. I’ve been a few times now and am actually liking it- for the most part. I do like how my feet feel afterwards except for the little bit of soreness from the pushing back of the cuticles. That just flat out hurts. How about you guys? Do you like a pedicure? Does the cuticle pushing hurt? How do you feel about the exfoliating and the leg massage?

The girl who did mine this time kept laughing at me when I’d do that little jump off my seat when she touched the bottom of my feet. I can’t help it. It’s reflexes. LOL!

I usually pick a shade of pink. What color do you like?

I’m heading out to the Romance Writers of America convention in Atlanta on Tuesday, the 16th. If anyone is going, let me know. I’d love to meet you for a chat.