Saturday, August 2, 2008
Week In Review
I survived my flights across the continent. Yes, I realize that statement is self-evident but since I agonize over flying, over sitting in a metal tube crammed full of strangers who may or may not bathe and possess basic social etiquette, I felt the need to state that yes, I survived my flights and the two hour lay-over in Phoenix.
By the way, Phoenix has an interesting idea of what constitutes candy. Apparently, if it comes from a cactus, burns like a jalapeno, or contains an honest-to-God worm, it qualifies as a treat.
On my flight from Phoenix to San Fran, I sat next to a woman who was going to RWA as an author groupie rather than as a writer. I found that fascinating (plus she had a Kindle and I was really curious about it) so we struck up a conversation. I told her my name and she said, "That name is really familiar to me. I know you from somewhere!"
I found that gratifying. I've worked hard to establish a web presence, to get my name out there among authors and readers and here was living proof that my efforts were succeeding.
Since I was positive we'd never met in person, I began running through the other possibilities: my blog, my short on Amazon, my presence on other literary blogs, the newspaper article about my Golden Heart....nothing rang a bell with her. We left the subject alone and moved on, circling through topics until we landed on what my hubby does for a living.
Her eyes lit up. "Redwine! Clint Redwine! That's where I know the name. I'm a huge fan of your husband."
Oh. Well. That's nice too...
Traversing San Fran's airport wasn't nearly as difficult as I anticipated. Taking the complimentary shuttle to the hotel, however, was a different story. I waited outside at the shuttle pick-up curb for nearly an hour, wondering the whole time (as shuttle after shuttle for other hotels came and went) if perhaps the hotel, the website, and the nice lady providing information at the shuttle stop were all lying to me through their teeth.
Perhaps the shuttle didn't exist. Certainly it didn't show up every half an hour as everyone claimed. When finally the bus bearing the Holiday Inn logo on the front rolled to a stop, the driver began questioning my ultimate destination.
"I need to go to the Holiday Inn Express." I said.
"The one on Airport."
"Umm, are they both Holiday Inn Expresses?"
"No, one is regular Holiday Inn."
"Then I need the Express."
"Are you sure?"
I took a brief moment to wonder if throwing my luggage at someone's head qualifies as a crime in San Fran.
"Yes. The Express."
"What is the address of the one you need?"
Now, at this point, the other passengers on board (the shuttle had two other destinations) are all glaring at me, wondering why I don't know where I'm going. I DO know where I'm going. I just can't convince the driver.
I yank out my notebook, haul out the page with all my pertinent travel information, and tell him I need the Holiday Inn Express and give an address.
"That's what I thought. You need the regular Holiday Inn."
Apparently over-heated red-heads with homicidal glints in their eyes fit the profile for those who choose to stay at the regular Holiday Inn.
"No, I need the Express. I'm positive."
The driver ignored me, motored his way out of the airport, made the rounds, drove right past the Holiday Inn Express and dropped me off at the regular Holiday Inn, insisting all the while that this was where I belonged. I told him forget whatever address I gave him, I knew I was registered at the Express. He did not care.
I entered the lobby of the regular Holiday Inn, expecting to see a mass of over-heated red-heads with murder weapons firmly clutched in their well-manicured hands...something to explain why my driver was so convinced this was my final destination.
The lobby was empty.
Perhaps all the patrons were out committing crimes?
I approached the front desk, gave them my name, and was told I did not have a reservation.
The poor man was lucky I hadn't packed a crowbar.
He called the Holiday Inn Express and sure enough, they had me in their computer.
"I knew it. Stupid shuttle driver. How am I going to get to the Express?" I asked, sweetly and with minimal baring of teeth.
"It's just a couple blocks up the road. You can walk." He answered.
Really lucky I didn't pack a crowbar. Although, come to think of it, I was packing stilettos...
So, I hauled my luggage down the sidewalk for two blocks to the Holiday Inn Express.
They wisely had a room instantly available.
1. Not dying on an airplane.
2. Not remembering the stilettos I'd packed until it was too late to use them in the commission of a felony.
3. Meeting Katy in person for the first time and realizing that hanging out with her is perfect.
4. Heading to Pier 39 with Katy and eating clam chowder in a sourdough bowl, drooling over a calendar of fairies only to have my friend buy it for me, and finding some fun souvenirs for my boys.
5. Not dying on an airplane.
1. Arriving at RWA with 60 friends (my fellow Pixies, the 2008 Golden Heart finalists) waiting for me.
2. Discovering that Conference is tons of fun when you know so many people.
3. Getting 13 new paperbacks for free.
4. Hearing a woman ask a panel of agents what they thought of the "one space or two spaces after a period" controversy and watching the agents justifiably shut her down in 1.3 seconds.
5. Going with Katy and a new friend to see The Dark Knight Thursday evening.
1. Meeting an agent who has requested SF and wanted to meet me in person after her workshop.
2. Enjoying the champagne reception for the Rita and GH finalists without enjoying too much champagne and giving everyone present a crazy woman to include in their next novel.
3. Hanging out with my Pixies at the Cheesecake Factory...Kahlua mocha coffee cheesecake is a wonderful invention.
Now, I'm off to breakfast and then to a pitch appointment with another agent. The rest of my day is full of workshops, practice for tonight's awards ceremony, and then the ceremony itself and several parties/receptions afterwards.
Off to hunt up some coffee.