ICON 40, what can I say? In a nutshell, it was fantabulous!

I felt more comfortable than last year, less nervous about being on panels, and not quite as starstruck by all the talent around me. It helped that I had a huge support group. Thank you, Writers Anonymous, for bringing me into the fold.

Speaking of talent and panels, I was on five—if you count DreamCon—with some wonderful people. Most of the panels I participated in revolved around my favorite part of writing and story, characters. I hope my rambling was helpful and the participants understood my point of keeping your characters grounded in reality by questioning what ‘real people’ would do, no matter the race of your character. I’m also hoping they understood my views on how it’s not just females who are objectified in fiction. Someday, I’ll write a post with my thoughts on the subject.

On to my esteemed co-panelists. Yes, this is where I start dropping names. Take notes, you’ll want to check out their work.

I was lucky enough to share tables with many of the usual suspects, R.J. Eliason, Tambo Jones, Aaron Bunce, Jed Quinn, and Dennis Green. We all know each other so well our words flow together as if we’re of one mind. Yet, we manage to hold true to our individual thoughts and opinions, never judging, always discussing in an adult manner, even when we don’t ‘act’ like adults.

Stepping outside the comfort zone, I was honored to be on panels with the likes of Jim C. Hines, Ann Leckie, Patty Templeton, David Gerrold, Michael Koogler, Tara Tolly, Gregga J. Johnn, Anna Kathryn Davis, and Terri M. LeBlanc. They were all gracious and welcoming.

Michael has been added to my Eastside Boys, along side Aaron, Jed and Dennis. I wish I could have chatted with Ann more, she’s fascinating, intelligent, and absolutely wonderful. Her Ancillary series is going on my TBR list, along with Patty Templeton’s There Is No Lovely End. Patty and I were seated next to each other at Barnes & Noble. I’ve got to say I was a bit intimidated, but she quickly had me laughing and enjoying her company. There is nothing like books and library chat to bring people together. My other B&N buddy was the petite, Jamie Wood. So damn delightful and sweet your teeth might hurt, but her fairy tale based stories will have you coming back for more.

As great as spending time with these people was, what stood out the most was the convention attendees. I met people who read, or are reading, the Fey Creation series. It always astounds me when writers and reviewers read my fluff, but to have readers say they enjoy the books…that’s an entirely different feeling. Even more astounding was watching one lovely lady hesitate to approach me. I know I have resting bitch face syndrome, but seriously, I don’t bite. Never be afraid to come up and say hi, or ask a question. More than likely, I’m more nervous than you.

I have to thank the organizers for all the work they put into the convention. Adam, Lettie, Erin, Terri, Dana, those I didn’t have the pleasure meeting, and Amanda Zhorne, from Barnes & Noble, you ROCK!

Now that the weekend is over, along with my fifteen-seconds of fame, I go back to being Amy from the block.

I’ll leave you with a few pictures The Breadwinner took.


Patty pretending to listen to me gab. Yes, that's Joe Haldeman on her right!

Patty pretending to listen to me gab. Yes, that’s Joe Haldeman on her right!









Patty, Jamie, and I chatting with book lovers.


Look at all the people! And a candid shot of the lovely Gay Haldeman.

Look at all the people! And a candid shot of the lovely, Gay Haldeman.


Without the flux capacitor it's just a car!

Without the flux capacitor, it’s just a car!