Author Tamela Hancock Murray

RWA 2011 – Bright Lights Big Stories

by Lynette Eason

Today we are pleased to have a guest post from Lynette Eason, author of the bestselling “Women of Justice” series published by Revell. She also won the 2011 Inspirational Reader’s Choice Award for romantic suspense. Last week Lynette attended the RWA (Romance Writers of America) convention and we asked her to share her experience.


“Bright Lights Big Stories” was the theme of the RWA conference this year. My very FIRST RWA conference. What an experience!

The conference was held at the Marriott Marquis in Times Square. My hotel room was on the twenty-first floor. My husband came with me and we had a corner king room. It was HUGE. And so comfy. I could have just stood at the window looking down at all of the excitement on Broadway the entire week, but I knew there were other fun things to experience. The first day we got there, we walked all over, exploring. We ended up in Central Park, 5th Avenue (hubby would not let me go in any of the shops.) and then finally St. Patrick’s Cathedral. What a gorgeous place. So serene and peaceful. And air-conditioned, thank goodness. But what a wonderful place! Sights, sounds and smells to die for.  And then there was the Statue of Liberty and Battery Park.

And Ground Zero. Where people did die. Very sobering to stand there and remember what happened that September day. But so encouraging, too, to see it being rebuilt, to see Americans exhibiting that indomitable, undefeatable spirit, that “never give up or give in” attitude that bought the freedom we have today.

And then there was Chinatown. One word. Wow. Okay, four words. Wow! Lots of People! Busier and more crowded than Times Square.

That afternoon we experienced a bomb scare in Times Square (someone left an unattended bag on the street and law enforcement cordoned off that section). Then we had a lovely dinner in the famous Rockefeller Center at the Rock Center Café. Expensive, but yummy!

One of the highlights of the conference for me was the Readers for Life Literacy signing. On Tuesday night from 5:30 until around 8:30, 500 authors gathered to sign books to raise money for charity. That was a sensory overload experience, but so much fun and for a great cause.

Overall, if I had to rate the whole NY experience on a scale of 1-10, I’d give it a solid 15. Next year, the conference will be held in Anaheim, CA. And yes, I’m making plans to attend. Hope to see you there!

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