If you've ever been to the RT Booklover's Convention, you know it can be a life-changing experience. There's the smart, informative workshops that can jumpstart your writing. The agent and editor appointments that just might net you that book deal. The Faery Ball where you could meet your bewinged soul mates. We could go on.
But today we're here with Lynsay Sands, to hear how the 1999 RT Booklovers Convention changed her life, and helped her to create her über-popular Argeneau vampire series. This month's One Lucky Vampire makes a decade that these bestselling books have been with us, and February's release, Vampire Most Wanted, is entry number twenty! We, of course, wanted to know how it all happened.
Pamela Palmer, Lynsay Sands and Merrie Destefano at the RT Convention in 2009 — 10 years after Lynsay's first RT Con.
Tell us about attending your first RT Convention.
The first writer’s convention I ever attended was in 1999, the Romantic Times convention in Toronto. To be honest I was so surprised by what was going on around me that I think I had my mouth open in shock for the first couple of days. There were so many readers and writers, all of whom I’d never met before. This convention set the bar pretty high for future writers’ conferences.
What was it like meeting Kathryn Falk?
The first time I met Katherine Falk — or Lady Barrow as many know her — was when she came and sat down at our table (at breakfast I believe) and introduced herself. I nearly fell out of my chair with surprise, and I was pretty tongue tied as I recall. But I found she was surprisingly approachable and an all-around nice person. I’ve met her a couple of times since, and found her to be very generous and sincere as well.
How did attending RT inspire the Argeneau series?
RT did inspire a lot of ideas that went into Lucern’s story, one of my first Argeneau titles, Single White Vampire. For example, his being a romance writer, attending the RT convention, the parties that were held, like the Western-themed party, the rock ‘n’ roll party — and who could forget the vampire-themed ball where Lucern gets his codpiece caught on the tablecloth. Although that scene never happened in real life, Kathryn and the writers I met at the conference were so amazing that I knew if something like that had happened that they would do what they could to help out.
Some of the things that made it into Single, White Vampire were the Mr. Romance Cover Model competition and Historical Fashion Spectacle — both of which were a part of that first RT convention. I couldn’t believe the sheer effort the organizers put into all of the events as the decorations were lovely, the settings immaculate and the costumes that participants were wearing were gorgeous!
Anything you’d like to add?
This convention was the first time I encountered readers. I only had two books out at that time, and was amazed that anyone besides my family actually read them. I was even more amazed at how kind, generous and complimentary the readers were. But then, I am pretty sure I have the best readers in the world. I’ve heard horror stories from other writers about their experiences with readers, but I’ve never had bad experiences (and knock on wood that I don’t). It was, and always is, a real pleasure to meet all those lovely readers, and I have to thank Kathryn for arranging a conference where that’s possible.
If you want to try Lysany's Argeneau series, her latest, One Lucky Vampire is available in stores and online now! For more undead stories, be sure to visit our Everything Paranormal page.