Romancing San Francisco
by Lorraine Heath

When I left Dallas last Saturday, the temperature was 103. When I arrived in San Francisco, I had to bundle up in a jacket.

Not only was it cold, but the fog was thick and very little was visible beyond the shoreline. It wasn't until Tuesday that I understood why people lose their hearts in San Francisco. The sun finally came out and the city awash in sunshine was gorgeous.

That morning, a few friends and I visited Alcatraz. When we disembarked from the ferry, a uniformed guard greeted us with the ominous words: Welcome to the Rock. It was barked over and over without emotion, as I imagined it was spoken years ago when criminals were brought there for their incarceration.

Alcatraz was certainly a harsh environment, but what I found really haunting was the story of how the prisoners could always hear the people in San Francisco celebrating New Year's Eve. Their joyous shouts, yells, and good cheer would travel over the bay to Alcatraz and made it the loneliest night of the year for the inmates.

Wednesday night, the RWA conference kicked off with the RWA Readers for Life booksigning which raises money for literacy. More than 500 authors in one room, it was amazing!

Avon provided its authors with a wonderful poster of our cover. Many readers stopped by to purchase books and say hello. While we don't yet have the official tally, preliminary reports indicate that this signing made more money than last year's.

Thursday, the conference began with motivational speaker Theresa Behenna, who started her presentation by playing NEW YORK, NEW YORK on a piano. Frequently throughout her speech, she would liven things up with more music. It was entertaining and definitely guaranteed to wake us that morning. In the afternoon motivational speaker Gail Blanke shared her trapeze theory of letting go in order to grab the future. I found myself revitalized listening to both speakers sharing their stories and encouraging us to reach for our dreams.

Today will find the Avon authors at the Avon Open House. Attendees have the opportunity to stop by for complimentary books signed by their favorite authors. I have to admit that this event is always one of my favorites. The room is not only filled with those who read our stories, but also with energy and excitement. And it's just plain fun.

(Jo Davis and me)

But shame on Avon author Anna Campbell for bringing me some lovely Aussie chocolate--which I couldn't resist devouring while writing this blog. Now I may not be able to fit into my new outfit for the Avon family dinner this evening!


Blogger Shea said:

like John Denver in his song.......
Sweet Surrender

4:31 AM  

Blogger Eva S said:

I wish I were there...All my favorite authors together!

7:51 AM  

Anonymous Lorraine said:

Eva: It was wonderful! And you're so right. The real treat is having an opportunity to visit with so many authors. During the Avon dinner I sat beside Sara Bennett and Janet Mullany. They have such lovely accents. Sara is from Australia and Janet is originally from England - not far from where my mom grew up.

2:56 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Authors are awesome!!!

5:15 PM  

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