Friday, October 30, 2009

NJRW Conference Rocked!

By Karen Cino
President, RWA/NYC

This past weekend, I attended the “New Jersey Put Your Heart in a Book” conference.  A new conference in a different state...perfect! There were, however, a few obstacles to get over before it officially began.

Tanya picked me up on Thursday morning. After a quick lunch at my house, we were off. We quickly settled into our rooms. We planned on looking through the workshop schedule, but it didn’t turn out that way.

Now you know the weekend was not going to go by without a couple of incidents. Like…a brief plumbing problem. You must be saying it is impossible, especially after our Washington story, but it’s true.  Next came a simple request. A small table. Well, after dinner, we were pleasantly surprised to see that the table was delivered to Tanya’s room. A banquet table.  We both brought the table down the hall, onto the elevator, with Tanya hanging over it to push the elevator button. Oh yes, another wonderful scene. You just can’t make this stuff up. And let’s not forget another false fire alarm. What’s going on? Two conferences, and two false fire alarms causing chaos. I just rolled over and said, who cares.

Wow. Once we got over those obstacles, we were in the home stretch.

We breezed through registration, and met up with Carolyn Gibbs, Lis Eng and Cathy Greenfeder for lunch. Everything was going well until I wound up with a sore throat and fever. But that didn’t stop me. I was off to the workshops. First up was “How to Cook up a Suspense Novel” with the husband and wife team of Jim and Nikoo McGoldrick writing as Jan Coffey. From there I strolled to Kathy Kulig’s “Screenwriting Tips for Building a Novel”. Oh yes, dialog is the most important ingredient, so onto another workshop.

The Golden Leaf Book Award Ceremony was awesome. Our very own Anna DePalo won for her short contemporary novel, THE BILLIONAIRE IN PENTHOUSE B.

The rest of the conference was filled with parties and socializing with friends, new and old. Former member Irene Weissman entertained with countless stories of inspiration.

We rocked the house at the NJRW Conference after- party singing Frank Sinatra’s New York, New York. We had a great time. I was proud to be there representing our New York Chapter. I left with renewed hope, dreams and inspiration. ♥

Picture 1-- Bathing Beauties Karen Cino and Tanya Goodwin
Picture 2 -- Golden Leaf winner, author Anna DePalo
Picture 3-- At the table, Carolyn Gibbs, Isabo Kelly, Leanna Hieber, bookseller Stacey Agdern
Picture 4-- Megan Frampton and Kwana Jackson
Picture 5 -- Carolyn Gibbs and friend
Picture 6 -- Tanya Goodwin and friend
Picture 7 -- Leanna Renee Hieber at booksigning
Picture 8 -- Cathy Greenfeder and Lis Eng

Please visit Kwana's blog for more pictures and commentary.


  1. Thanks for sharing the great conference wrap-up with us all, Karen, plus pics. You are one intrepid lady! And it sounds like you all had a great time despite the bloopers. The latter always make for the best stories, nonfiction as well as fiction.

  2. Lovely recap and great pool pic!