Today I received my reminder from my girl, Regina, that I needed to write my ”check-in.” I love the reminders for I tend to be a little last minute (stop snickering Dee). But in being last minute, my mind ALWAYS takes a tour and rolls around to doing everything but what I’m supposed to be doing. Like for instance, I stopped writing this to search for tickets to a Chicago White Sox game. As I was rolling around the site, trying to find GOOD seats (can’t abide by the nosebleeds, even if they are only $16.95 – taxes and fees included. YIKES!), I thought back to my first Romance Slam Jam conference. I cannot remember how I came to hear about it, but my publisher at the time paid for my room and I hopped a flight to Atlanta. When I arrived at the hotel and saw all the writers I got super excited. You see, these were writers whose works I had just started to read (like Francis Ray and Gwynne Forster, to name just a few) and here I was attempting to join their ranks — I consider them and several others the godmothers of black Romance.
During the conference I got a chance to hang out a bit with Carmen Green (she was the host author) as well author Alicia Wiggins. And I think I also mentioned that I met Leslie Esdaile Banks at this Slam Jam. Y’all, there was so much to do and see; but, what humbled me the most were the readers! They came – bags of books in tow – and heaped bounds of unlimited love upon us all! And I knew that no matter, this was where I belonged. To date, it is an experience that I will never forget.
When aspiring authors ask me for advice, I think of the reception I always receive at Slam Jam and I remind them of how they should receive their readers. Now, I’ve met many who’ve played the Diva role (and then later I heard readers discussing the diva role in the bathroom!) and others who either refused to show up to an event on time or not at all! It is because of the reader that black romance is still a hot seller! And my experience with those who took the time to purchase and read my books has always been positive – because I’m truly humbled that you even support me.
As time moved on, there were some Slam Jam’s that I missed, but after I attended RSJ in Miami, I knew that I had to support this event – I had to do something, even if it was sending out mass emails, copying and passing out the flyer everywhere I went, or saying a prayer for safe travels and for folks to have a great time. Bottom line: I HAD TO SUPPORT ROMANCE SLAM JAM!
So, with all that I’ve written here, please share your most memorable Slam Jam! And let us in on your most positive or humorous experience.
And while you are thinking about past Romance Slam Jams, don’t forget to put May 2-5, 2013 on your calendar and come on to Milwaukee – home of the Brewers, Prime Outlet in Kenosha and the Milwaukee Brewery Tour! Hosted by the Lovely Ladies Book Club, as always, this Slam Jam will be one to remember!
Make your reservations today!
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