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Saturday, July 05, 2008

Bronwyn Jameson is Preparing for San Francisco

Is it too soon to be talking about the RWA National Conference in San Francisco? It is July. In three weeks' time I will be kissing my family goodbye and boarding my first flight. I love to wring every ounce of anticipation from the final weeks of preparation, so I don't think it is.

My last conference trip, to Atlanta in 2006, was on my own. I travelled alone, I roomed alone, and while I enjoyed some aspects of the solitude nothing beats good company. This year I would need both hands and a considerable number of toes to count the friends from Australia and New Zealand who are doing the SF conference trip. Five of us are travelling together with a stopover in Hawaii. We'll be poolside, on the beach, shopping, enjoying drinks with umbrellas, and generally ensuring our brains are well rested and ready for conference overload.

Speaking of readiness: my hairdresser booked me in for the pre-conference cut and colour way back in February. She knows how badly I neglect my hair in between conferences. I have also made appointments for nails and pedicure, waxing and spray tan. Not sure about the last. Will it wash off in the surf?

Speaking of surfing: today I spent too much time cruising the 'net, checking out things to do and places to eat and, most importantly, shopping centres at our destinations. I also checked which planes we'll be on, airline menus and the inflight entertainment. On the outward leg, two movies I haven't seen, Flawless and 21. And then there are the books I've been saving up for on-plane reading treats. They are now downloaded to my PDA and ready to go.

Also checked the all-important baggage allowance. My last overseas trip was to England with a one checked piece 20kg limit. I love that Americans don't pack lightly and so we're allowed TWO pieces up to 32kg each for this trip. With all the conference books and shopping that extra weight will be useful on the trip home. Speaking of which...

Between conference trips I squirrel away my frequent flyer points and credit card points and use them to buy an upgrade to business class for the return trip. It's not just a treat, it's a life-saver. After more than a week of late nights and poor sleeping and constant talking, I'm buying 15 hours of solitude and great service and even some sleep in my skybed. It's the best use of those points that I know.

So, I have three weeks left to plan the wardrobe, to lose another kilo so I can fit into the wardrobe, to trawl through the conference program and mark the must-attend workshops, and to do up my schedule. You know, I think I enjoy the preparation and the anticipation almost as much as I love the conference itself.

Is anyone else counting the sleeps until a summer holiday trip, or perhaps the San Francisco conference? Who else loves the preparation and the anticipation almost as much as the main event?

If you're going to RWA, come say hello at the Literacy Signing on Wed. July 30. I will be signing Tycoon's One-Night Revenge (Silhouette Desire April 08) and handing out Tim Tams.

11 comments:

Anne McAllister said...

Oh, Bron, it's going to be great to see you! I won't get there until Friday afternoon -- and not at the conference hotel because I'm not enrolled, but I couldn't stay away when so many 'down under' friends were coming all this way!

I'm glad to see you're all prepared -- and I envy you the sky bed on your way home. It will be a lovely treat.

Counting the days!

Pat Cochran said...

Hi, Bron,
It isn't too early to start planning,
in fact, for me it would be a bit
late! Enjoy your visit to our
country!

Bronwyn Jameson said...

Anne, you're going!!!!! Oh, it will be wonderful to catch up. Friday night for sure, if not before. Glad I am not the only one counting the days.

Pat, I must admit that the first few trips I've done to American conferences (this will be my fourth) I've started the countdown months ahead and become TOO distracted by the travelling details. But a month seems fair, doesn't it?

Bron

Anne Gracie said...

Oh, Bron I wish I was going. Wish I'd finished my current wip early and could go. You'll just have to enjoy yourself for me as well, okay?
And what a brilliant idea to upgrade on your way home. I'm always exhausted after national, and that long trip looms ominously, but with an upgrade it makes great sense.
I like talking books rather than reading them on planes. Next long trip I'm going to buy myself a new Ipod and get some great audio books downloaded onto it for the flight.

Anne Gracie said...

Oh, Bron I wish I was going. Wish I'd finished my current wip early and could go. You'll just have to enjoy yourself for me as well, okay?
And what a brilliant idea to upgrade on your way home. I'm always exhausted after national, and that long trip looms ominously, but with an upgrade it makes great sense.
I like talking books rather than reading them on planes. Next long trip I'm going to buy myself a new Ipod and get some great audio books downloaded onto it for the flight.

Anne Gracie said...

whops, sorry about the double post.

Bronwyn Jameson said...

Anne, I wish you were coming too...but then I'm also longing for this next book of yours so will, regretfully, allow you to stay home and finish it!

Re audio books: Sadly I bought an MP3 which isn't compatible with audible. My boo-boo, I should have checked first because they'd be great on the plane. You can rest yr eyes while still enjoying the story.

Bron

Annie West said...

Bron, have a terrific time. It sounds like the trip there with friends will be just as much fun as the actual conference. Wish I could be there too. Sigh. Maybe next year.

Hope you manage to relax on the way home so you're invigorated ready to work on a new book for us!

Annie

Anna Campbell said...

Bron, it's certainly not too early in this household to be talking about San Francisco. We've been talking about it for, oh, a good six months! Isn't it exciting? And so fantastic so many Aussies and New Zealanders will be there. I've been to two conferences, Atlanta and Dallas, and at neither were Down Underers thick on the ground. This will be a hoot! I also took your advice and booked an upgrade on the way home too. I'm always such a mess after a conference! But a happy mess! Hey, thanks for letting me know about the second suitcase! I might need it on the way home for all the wonderful books they give away at these things.

Bronwyn Jameson said...

Annie, one thing I should have said in the article -- this trip is also a holiday for me. I'm looking forward to the relaxing days ahead of conference and to the sightseeing and to seeing a lot of friends who I only see once every few years. And after checking through the program yesterday and marking the speakers and workshops I MUST see, I know it will also be creatively inspiring.

Bron

Bronwyn Jameson said...

Anna, happy mess is a perfect description of after conference. That is me as well. Good luck with your upgrade; hope you like as much as I do.

Bron