Friday night, after closing on Thursday evening and then opening on Friday morning, I attended the Fourth Annual American Icon. Didn't participate in this one--unless you count whooping and hollering for my buds participation.
And let me tell you: Deb, Fleur, and John kicked all kinds of butt.
Deb conquered her fear and stood in front of all those people and read like a pro. It was amazing. She claims her hands were shaking like crazy when she was done, but I didn't notice. I thought she did awesome. Plus she (along with only our table--the cool kids' table) won one of the door prizes.
Fleur, on top of the door prize she won (see? told you we were the cool kids--or at least really lucky) took "Best Tension" this year. That was the prize I won last year, so I'm glad the torch passed on to a worthy successor. See how I take all kinds of credit? Anyway, she earned it. She did an awesome job--especially after seeing her so nervous at practice. Practice makes perfect! and she was.
John in a suit jacket. Nuff said. He whooped up on all the action/adventure people. He came across professional and his presentation was spot-on. I'm pretty sure if just one guy had been on the panel of judges he'd've swept up.
It was great. For those of you plugging away all alone in a home office or on your lunch break, I highly recommend befriending your local writers. Not networking. Making friends. The most irritating part of the evening was the schmoozing. I had fun not because I was there to promote my book, but because I was supporting my friends in their endeavors. They shouldn't be surprised to see me there: I'm invested in them and what they do. Their successes are mine too. I want them to do well. I'm pretty sure that's why Shane and Ali and Nicole and John (different John...) showed up as well. Networking is getting your name out. Who cares?
You want people to care about what you do and why you do it. So, even though I didn't read, I think I got three special prizes from my friends--their stories.