by Valerie Ipson
Saturday, I attended a writer's workshop held at a local library and sponsored by the Desert Rose Chapter of Romance Writers of America (www.DesertRoseRWA.org). It was an enjoyable day spent with a couple of friends from my Skyline Scribblers chapter, lunch at The Sugar Bowl, and feeling connected to a community of writers. Fortunately, there were only minor moments where I was reminded that "we aren't at ANWA anymore," if you know what I mean. The classes covered general topics, not those specific to romance writers, so, no, we didn't get tips for writing sizzling love scenes. The best part about it was that it was FREE, plus it provided the opportunity to learn from Connie Flynn which is always a good thing.
Published authors presented classes and led panel discussions. Truth be told, except for Connie who I have participated in workshops with, I have not heard of a single one of these authors or their books. And yet, one of them has published upwards of 90 novels, many others less than that, but still high numbers. This was astounding to me and changed my perspective on publishing. I may not be buying these author's books, but someone is--enough someones that their publishers keep buying their manuscripts. Overall, the feeling I came away with is that there is room for each of us. We will not all publish a bestseller and become a household name, but there is a niche for us somewhere.
So let's all join in singing There's a place for us, somewhere a "niche" for us...isn't that from West Side Story. I've been listening to Il Divo sing that and it's AMAZING!