October 11th, 2009


James River Writers' Conference

I spent Friday and Saturday at the ever-excellent annual James River Writers conference in Richmond. Located in the Library of Virginia, it ran from 9:00 to 4:30 each of those days. A quick run-down of the fun stuff I did there:

1. Saw David L. Robbins, who I can now ALMOST call by his name instead of "Professor Robbins." He's now teaching at VCU, and hopes to return to William & Mary when its poor public-school budget has the monies.

Apparently he has named a character after me in his new book, Broken Jewel, which comes out November 10. He used my real last name - "Anica Lewis" is my writing name, "Anica" and "Lewis" being my two middle names. So that's MAJOR Willcox to you! And if you forget the extra L, you can drop and give me ten!

2. Bought Professor David R.'s book War of the Rats. Also Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater. Edgy YA werewolf love story? Yes please. Got both books signed. Conferences are awesome. I felt even better about this because the book table was provided by a local independent, Fountain Bookstore.

3. Attended many panels. This means - that's right - a list within a list! Collapse )

I was scheduled for a five-minute pitch session with editor Karen Lotz of Candlewick Press, but sadly, she was sick and missed the whole conference. What a bummer for her! I know I'd hate to miss it. It was a bummer for me, too, of course, as I'd practiced my pitch of Rabbit and Cougar for days, but that did make me smoother when talking to other writers about it during breaks. Also, Ms. Lotz, who is apparently super-awesome, has offered to read the ENTIRE manuscript of every person who was scheduled to pitch her. Checking the list they gave me, this is at least eighteen people. Wow. We're told we'll receive details by e-mail.

So, a great weekend! And before I forget, I have found an independent seller of books - used, new, rare, and out of print - with a huge inventory and from which one can order online with very reasonable shipping as well as good prices. Check it out.