Most of you who follow me on Facebook or Twitter will have seen all my frenetic ramblings two weekends ago about how awesome EVERYTHING about my trip to Chicago was :-D
And some of you might even think that all I did was screw around with my pals - Christa Desir and Leigh T Moore, and Fred LeBaron, but I actually got a LOT of work done.
Christa's dog cleaned my feet and did a more thorough job than I would have EVER done.
And I got to drink a DELICIOUS salted caramel hot chocolate at Ghirardelli - it was very large w/ whipped cream. Work ;-)
Ate my first Jimmy John's sub sandwich (Christa was SHOCKED). Work?
AND it was just as cold in Chicago as it was in Alaska. :-/
I got to visit two large Indie bookstores and one of the most amazing libraries I've ever seen.
Went to a book signing with one of my favorite online people - the beloved Fred from BA. You are awesome.
Did the speed catch-up/chat with Leigh T Moore - and like she said - got through part of 50 conversations when we planned 500. Met her awesome girls who both took HILarious pics of themselves with my phone :-D
Saw works of art that I've seen in the millions of art books I have at home IN PERSON. Dude, people. I BREATHED ON A JACKSON POLLOCK PAINTING. Just sayin...
(if you work at the Chicago Art Institute - I'm sure my breath didn't actually reach the painting)
Monet, Manet, Degas, Renoir, Matisse...
Salvador Dali, Van Gogt, PICASSO.
There is something about seeing the brush strokes in REAL life that completely overwhelms me.
I love modern art becuase (for me) it becomes all about perception and emotion. I find it just... I have no words. Jo could spend DAYS in museums.
I got to "hang" with the Desir family. Seriously. Christa's always saying - "I'm just smoke and mirrors. I'm totally not that cool."
She's totally that cool.
Christa and I could be locked in a room together for days and never get bored. This is how cool she is.
Her dog is as obnoxious as she says (but SO sweet) and her husband is totally as awesome as he sounds, and her kids are just... They're pretty spectacular - and the nicknames she uses on Facebook are for real, which I love.
And Christa and I caught up on all the publishing stuff, and I tried to jump in, but I can almost NEVER remember names, which makes my end of the conversation a bit like this - Yes, and that one girl who wrote the book with that guy on the cover...
And we talked Love Blind (collab) and Gestapo (collab) and new projects (EEP), tweaks, and timelines and new books and old books and current news, and stupid crap we did when we were younger, and accidental three-ways and dating people who are now wanted for murder, and, and, and...
I think one of the most important things is that as a writer, I tend to "hole up" and want to spend all day in my house behind my computer taking short breaks to do what NEEDS to be done in my house, but sometimes we all need OUT.
And this was out in a big way.
I'm looking at the rest of my year, and I'm thinking - my life has changed SO much in two years. I have two more writer trips planned (Author signing in San Francisco in June and Cali for my book launch w/ Nyrae in the fall) and I'm like - when did this happen??
Just love this writing community. That's all.
What have you gained by being part of this AH-mazing group of online people?
Come ONNNN - Share the happy ;-)