Pikes Peak Writers Conference is fast approaching, and I’ve got a serious case of conference brain. If it doesn’t relate to conference, it doesn’t exist. Until it explodes or sets me on fire, in which case–I must deal with it.
So I’m thinking about Bonnie, our conference director. On the surface, you’d be hard-pressed to find two people who have less in common than Bonnie and myself. But as I’ve gotten to know her, I’ve learned that we share a lot of core values, an outlook on life that is slightly off kilter, and a love of finishing other people’s sentences with song fragments. Major plus: Bonnie has a beautiful voice but doesn’t flinch over the fact I’m tone-deaf.
It turns out, Bonnie is one of the sweetest and brightest people I’ve ever met–and I get to work with her! How awesome is that? She’s so thoughtful and tactful, which makes her a perfect balance for my sometimes impulsive bluntness. And we crack each other up.
I’m also thinking about Bob. I’m sad, because Bob has a family obligation which will take him away from Conference this year. Bob is the funniest person I know, which is the same thing he says about me. We’ve been in critique groups together for years, and he has the magic ability to know exactly where a chapter should end. He also tutors Thing 2 in math, and listening to the two of them cackle at the dining room table is a beautiful thing.
Then I think about Barb, who inspired the theme for this year’s conference: Writing from the Ashes: Never Lose Sight of Your Dreams. Barb has been my roommate for the last couple of conferences, so I’ll miss her a lot this year. She’s everything I’m not–gorgeous, charming and elegant. She’s also got a wicked wit, so we manage to keep each other buoyed throughout the pitching process. Who will wish me luck this year, and remind me to put on deodorant?
Then there’s Becky, zany as the day is long and twice as smart. She’s teaching me how to get people to buy me drinks at the conference bar. I bow to the master. No, I won’t ask Becky to remind me about the deodorant, because she’d do it at top volume from the other side of the room. What room? Whatever one was most crowded.
And Beth, who I got to see at Left Coast Crime, but won’t be at conference.She’s another former critique partner who has super ninja organizational skills she applies to her writing. No wonder her productivity levels leave me in the dust.
Off the top of my head, those are all my “B” buddies who are connected to Conference. They’ve all impacted my writing life in a positive way, and I’m grateful to them for it.
And I wonder if Becky will Buy me a Beer?