The Romance Writers of Australia Annual Conference ran rom 10 & 11 August 2019 in Melbourne.
The professional workshop day was held on Friday 9 August – I attended The Book Launch Bootcamp by Melissa Storm which was great. However I’ll write up notes about that separately.
That was followed by the Twisted Tales cocktail party. There were a lot of awesome costumes on display. Various ‘Wanted’ Disney characters, along with a bunch of Red Riding Hoods in various carnations, as well as a lot of very clever re-interpretations. (Special shout out to Nardia for her disco ball costume as Spinderella!). I went as Cheshire Puss-In-Boots, and was able to re-purpose my Cheshire Cat outfit from my fabulous Wonderland party 2 years ago.
For the conference proper, I missed the start due to the conference app having a different start time to the on-site program. So I missed the Welcome and an introduction by Anne Gracie.
Nalini Singh had started her Keynote when I got there, but I don’t think she had been talking for long as I managed to get a lot of content. My conference notes are a bit patchy, as I had a migraine one day and took some time out. But overall I had a good time, and I think there were some great sessions.
I find generally there is less interesting content than there used to be. There are no longer breakout sessions on genre topics like world building, history, fantasy, crime etc. I don’t know if this is a reflection of the aspiring / established etc streaming. Or a reflection of the changing membership. I do find it disappointing, as it was always a way for me to get a handle on what the different subgenres were up to. I found those niche panels were always some of the most interesting ones and I miss them.
Anyway stay tuned, I’ll be finally posting my conference notes. I have one in particular that I’ve been mulling over and discussing with a few friends, as I know a few people are interested and I have been working out what I want to say. But more on that to come…