I just returned from the Ozarks Romance Authors conference in Springfield, MO. This was my only conference for the year and it was well worth it. For a small group and a one day event, these ladies pack it full of weighty and meaty material.
They also had some stellar agents in attendance… Cori Deyoe from 3 Seas Literary Agency and Lucienne Diver from The Knight Agency. Pitches were given to these ladies in the morning. They graciously answered questions and enlightened a hungry crowd in the process of finding an agent. Oddly enough, two of the authors there employed these ladies. Rob Thurman works with Lucienne Diver and Jennifer Brown works with Cori Deyoe. We were given a rare glimpse into the Author/Agent relationship in these two very diverse relationships. Very enlightening.
Leigh Michaels, a multi-published author in the romance industry gave us very interesting information on self publishing. After publishing the standard route, Leigh is starting to self-publish more and more. She gave some morsels of information I had as yet to learn about the electronic publishing market. Very, very helpful.
Jennifer Brown, a native of Missouri, won the Erma Bombeck award for humor twice. She used to write a humor column in the Kansas City Star for four years. She now writes YA and has two books out “Hate List” and “Bitter End”. Surprisingly these are darker emotional YA books. Jennifer gave us a thorough run down on emotion. Very informative.
Steve Law is a publisher in his own right, but has written and just released a western: “Yuma Gold”. Steve is also from Missouri. He gave a very thorough run down of his promotion strategy using the marketing of his book as an example. A lot of leg work was involved. He doesn’t have the benefit of being a romance author. Westerns are rarely printed in digital format. His books are all paperback. He did a signing tour and utilized several tech gadgets to help promote sales. He was truly enlightening.
Here we have the complete panel from last Saturday. These lovely people fielded questions from the audience regarding all areas of the industry. Starting at the left with Core Deyoe, Lucienne Diver, Rob Thurmond (she writes dark mysteries in a male POV), Steve Law, Leigh Michaels, and Jennifer Brown.
Oh! I forgot. My book “Maggie’s Find” earned second place in the contemporary division of the Weta Nichols writing contest!! I can’t tell you what a boost that is to a sagging ego.