Trip to HIFA

Mostly good news today. First, my foot has stopped being quite so painful and swollen. Yay! I can walk and everything! Yay some more!

Second, tonight's the final of SYTYCD Australia. Well, technically it's already happened. I just need to avoid Aussie-based websites until I can find a download and watch it this evening.

And finally, aside from driving through a Chicago deluge on the way home, my outing to Iowa yesterday was a complete success. The gracious Heart of Iowa Fiction Authors (HIFA) chapter of RWA came out in force, along with some members of the Des Moines chapter, which is a good two hours away. That was very flattering. I don't know if I'd drive two hours to hear me speak!

I presented on one of my favorite topics. No, not unusual historicals! I am a firm believer that some women must be coached and encouraged to get past their fear of writing compelling, effective action. I think we're socialized to think that violence and conflict are negative, and thus the only conflict in some romance is of the emotional variety. But to write action is to liberate the id! It's really quite freeing, and I've come to love what I do--swashbuckling, explosive, high energy, and all that good stuff. It can heighten the emotional drama between the protagonists, which is what I was there to discuss.

So I chatted about that for a while, a repeat of the "Snakebite Scenes and Hollywood Plots" workshop I gave to Chicago North in December. The ladies were all very attentive and clever, asking quality questions throughout. I felt very engaged and appreciated, which was wonderful. Afterward, they all bought copies of WHAT A SCOUNDREL WANTS, even the nice women who don't normally read historicals, and we ate lunch at the conference center's buffet. Here's a picture of me nattering on.

Ugh! It's in-between hair! Soon it'll be grown out and looking not terrible again, but it's like wearing a floppy old mop.

I dragged back into Kenosha long about 7pm because of the darned, dratted rain. My brain was on overdrive for a while, coming up with good stuff for projects, but toward the end I kinda shut down and just listened to music. I haven't driven that much by myself in, well...ever.

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