1st Place 'Put Your Heart in a Book' Contest

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Yours truly with the one and only Madeline Hunter!
What an amazing weekend!

Not only did my manuscript, Seducing Charlotte, take first place in the New Jersey Romance Writers' Put Your Heart in a Book contest, but my other Regency romance, Compromising Willa, came in second.

It was my first writer's conference and I don't think I could have picked a better one.

Of course, winning helped!

Truthfully though, the workshops were run by big names in romance and each one I attended had real value. I'll blog about what I learned in the individual workshops in the coming days.

Me with the lovely Jessica Dickstein,
who ran the NJ RWA's
2010 PYHIAB contest. 
A major highlight of the weekend was meeting one of my favorite authors, Madeline Hunter, who served as a final judge in the competition.

 After attending her workshop, I ran into Madeline in the hotel lobby the following morning. She was incredibly generous, spending a good amount of time chatting with me about my work - especially the use of conflict and the value of strong, original openings in my manuscripts.

It was also a treat to speak to her about her books.

How often does a reader get to talk directly to the author about a book? I also had a chance to do so with Meredith Duran and Sherry Thomas, both of whom gave workshops at the conference.

With my DC chapter mate
Marta Bliese, who won in
 the paranormal category.
There were plenty of editors and agents there. They were not so fearsome in the flesh! The industry professionals shared their pet peeves which I'll write more about soon.

The only downside to the weekend was learning far too late that my husband had set the GPS to avoid toll roads (from a previous trip). No problem - at first - since the directions I had googled were simple enough.

That is, until we overshot the exit on the New Jersey Turnpike.

Let's just say we took a scenic drive of New Jersey back roads while trying to find our way back to the conference!


Jen said...

Congratulations! I'm so excited for you! What fantastic new!

Cara said...

WOW! What a fantastic weekend for you. Congratulations! 1st and 2nd place!! Next stop publication! Sounds like a multi book deal!

Diana Quincy said...

Thanks for your support, Jen and Cara.

It was an exciting weekend - one that actually exceeded expectations! How often does that happen?

Mo said...

Congratulations! I am so happy things are moving along with your writing and ....when can I read one?!?!?!

Heather Snow said...

Congratulations on your contest win! How very exciting. I love, love, love historical romance. Will be looking for your name on the bookshelves very soon...

Diana Quincy said...

Thanks Mo! Hopefully you can read one very a published book. I'm shy like that :)

Thanks for visiting my blog and thank you for your kind comments. I love historical romance as well. I'm keeping my fingers crossed that you WILL be seeing my books on the shelves in the near future. Until then, I'll keep typing away!

Jessica said...

It was definitely a weekend to remember! I know this year's conference is going to be just as exciting. Maybe you will take 1st place in our Golden Leaf this year :-)

Diana Quincy said...

Jessica: I wish! But maybe I'll be eligible for the Golden Leaf next year. This year I guess you'll have to go for the Golden Leaf, Miss Published Author.

In any case, I'll be at the conference. I wouldn't miss it!

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