GRL is an LGBT love fest. Literally! For those of you who have never attended, it’s a wonderful celebration of the full rainbow of romance. For authors of gay romance like me, it’s an opportunity to check in with old friends and meet new ones, writers and readers alike. It’s both a frightening and wonderful experience.
Frightening? You’d think the woman who sang operas in front of audiences far larger than the entire attendance at GRL would be totally relaxed about her fifth GRL. Yeah… not. I may appear confident, but I’m really, really nervous and uncomfortable in social situations, especially those involving lots of people. I’m good at hiding it, but believe me, that fear is there. And I’m pretty sure I’m not alone.
Writing is a lonely profession. GRL is great because I get to meet the people I’m writing for. It’s a link to the world outside my writing nook. And that’s amazing, because feeling connected is so important. Meeting readers keeps me motivated and inspired. But for people like me who are naturally shy, it’s also a huge challenge.
I can’t tell you how many folks I’ve met at conferences who have said they feel exactly the same way. So for those of you heading to Denver next week: you really aren’t alone! There’s something about the intersection of excitement and fear that keeps us moving past our hesitation. When we’re in the thick of things, chatting with old friends and meeting new ones, we usually forget the discomfort. But the week before? Ack! I’m pretty sure I won’t have any fingernails left by the time my flight touches down in Denver.
So here’s my plan… If you see me at GRL? Give me a hug and I’ll give you one back. Or if you’re not comfortable with the hugs, just say “hey”. I definitely won’t bite and I’ll be really happy to meet you! Let me introduce you to some of my friends. Introduce me to yours. See me having a drink (or three) in the bar? Come over and join me. That’s what GRL is all about and what makes all the pre-conference jitters fade away.
Last but not least, Dreamspinner Press is running a promotion on paranormals just in time for Halloween and my newest book, Finder’s Keeper, is 30% off! So snag yourself a copy and pick up a few more in the new Dreamspun Beyond line. They’re so much fun!
Hope to see you soon! -Shira