That’s the advice I was given after a drunken night of debauchery. As Leotine said so perfectly “last week was touristy stuff, you guys are the party.” I think we certainly did the bar and retreat proud with our celebrations. In fact hanging out with the girls and going around New Orleans was definitely the highlight of the trip.
I had considered blogging our trip day by day but let’s face it, I’m just not that kind of blogger. Not to mention I’m pretty sure the other girls will give play by plays since they are those kind of bloggers and well, I’ll leave that kind of work up to them. Also I can snag their great pictures that way too. I was kind of lazy with the camera on the trip.
So let me start this day’s post (there will be multiple days) with what I liked about this trip. There is a lot of stuff to talk about regarding the GRL retreat, some good but mostly the conference/convention/retreat was a HUGE missed opportunity. That’s not to say it wasn’t well organized, because it was, but it definitely suffered from not quite knowing what it was. I’ll get into that as well as meeting some of the authors (again, some good and some not so good). I know everyone is on a high from the retreat and I’ve yet to hear that it was anything but “OMG FABULOUS!” While I had a fabulous time last week I’m also not going to lie or sugarcoat things, especially where I personally think the retreat fell down.
But that’s for another day and another post because I can actually start with the positive and today’s post will begin with that. As I said meeting people was the highlight of this trip by far. Getting to meet and hang out with Leotine and Janna (two gorgeous girls from the Netherlands), Tracy, Chris, Kris, and Tam. We had a great time just walking around the French Quarter, eating meals, hanging out, chatting, drinking, and above all laughing. These are all very intelligent, well spoken women that are very funny. I feel really blessed to have been on the trip with them and to be able to laugh, joke, and be at ease. Everyone who met them loved them with good reason.
Incidentally I also found it very entertaining when random people would say how nice these various women are. Yes, of course that’s VERY true but let me tell you some of these wonderful women have a stealth bitch side, but you have to pay attention to see it. No one really sees those sides so it’s amusing to watch these interactions happen over and over.
Aside from the great city and wonderful company, the gay bar drinking was pretty stellar as well. Lafitte’s In Exile and the truly wonderful bartender Jim were not to be missed. We partook in his skills a couple of times and never regretted it. We may have been hung over but definitely no regrets. Especially because I now know to lay on my side when drunk so I don’t choke on my own vomit. (Not that I was ever in danger mind you but good tip!)
Meeting several authors was also a highlight. Most of them were very nice and a couple of them stand out as funny, personable, and always great to talk to. I won’t name names just yet (oh I’ll get there, you know me) but having actual conversations with some of the authors was incredibly enlightening and satisfying. A few had a wonderful sense of humor about my reviews, but more so they were real people without pretense, which wasn’t always easy to find.
That’s it for now but there is a lot more to come. I’ll be reviewing the retreat (can’t resist) and there were SO many interesting things that happened. Funny how authors never really think to look around when they’re talking smack about other authors, publishers, reviewers, and readers. I’m not above eavesdropping but sadly I didn’t have to try! (I kind of wanted to stealth it but totally unnecessary)…I’ll even share a few pictures I don’t remember taking but they’re pretty fun and show some great authors and gorgeous bloggers. Yea, yea I’m biased but the girls were that and more.
24 thoughts on “Roll onto your side so you don’t suffocate when you vomit…”
I’m glad you had fun with all the other bloggers. This would be my main reason for going to such an event, so that I can meet people in person with whom I share an online relationship.
I’m looking forward to the rest of your posts. In particular the positives and negatives of the conference itself. 🙂
I do wish you’d been there Jen, that would have made the group complete. You were definitely missed. I do agree that the social aspect is the main part and I appreciated and enjoyed that the most.
i know everyone’s going to say the conference was amazing (the yahoo loop is full of those) and that’s not to say I didn’t have an incredible time, because I did! But eh, you know me.. can’t be too happy with something or my head would explode.
Ha! Yeah, we are a great group. Ummm, how come I didn’t get an underline? Boo freaking hoo. 🙂 Just kidding.
Overall the weekend (is 5 days a weekend?) was FABULOUS, because the good outweighed the not so good. I met a couple of people who were completely new to me and I totally adored (no, not naked boy Scott but I wanted to put him in my pocket as well), got to see some people I’ve had an “on-line relationship” with in person and find they were as great as I expected and did meet some new author. It’s fun putting faces to names. Some exactly as you expect, some not so much.
As far as the conference content, I agree there could have been some significant additions, but I suppose the first one is always the hardest and lessons learned will hopefully be applied for future ones … in cities that are as much fun as New Orleans (I’m all for keeping it there), not the middle of no where.
Your title is definitely a sentiment worth repeating in New Orleans. I would know. Urg. At least I was awake. 😉 However you were practically sober that night compared to Saturday. LOL
I usually post day to day on vacation but … alcohol and blog posts don’t mix. I may just do a touristy round-up rather than much about the conference. We’ll see what I have for pics. Or it may be a diatribe of my loathing for US Air. One or the other.
I distinctly remember throwing up in the toilet so I think that was ok. And fuck.. was I ever drunk that night. What’s definitely worse is Kris was sober and she remembers all of this shit. It’s better if we’re all hammered. No blackmail!
I do think the good outweighs the bad by quite a bit. Meeting and hanging out with people in the social aspect is what made the trip amazing. I mean New Orleans rocks and I’ll happily go there ANYTIME but really it’s the people that made the trip. Both all of you guys and the authors we met. [You should convince Clare to stay with us next time, that would be hilarious].
We talked about the conference content and I’m curious if anything will change. My biggest fear is that because everyone will go on and on about how great it was (and it was, dont get me wrong, I had a GREAT time) that nothing will change and it’ll be the same kind of thing. I’m not trying to be down about it but I think some constructive input even from a nobody like me can’t be bad. But then again who knows.
Oh and I meant to get the links in but I was lazy and half asleep. Oops .. I’ll fix ya up.
I’m looking forward to reading the various posts. Since everyone has a blog and is doing guest posts for Janna I’m not sure if anyone will do day by days. Hard to say.
It would be nice if they did a follow-up survey which could be anonymous. People might be more willing to give their real opinion if they don’t fear some kind of backlash because it is a small community. There are on-line sites that let you do that. We used Survey Monkey or Fluid Survey or something like that. I always want to call it Liquid Monkey. They have everyone’s e-mail address, send it to everyone and get their opinion and ideas. I can’t believe the organizers are the only ones with great ideas.
Most conferences have feedback but I guess we’ll have to wait and see. Of course on the group everyone says it’s great. No one wants to be blackballed. 😉 I’m kidding … mostly.
That’s a great idea Tam (among your other many good ideas.. you could organize the whole thing in your sleep and probably better!)
You are right that no one is going to come out and say anything negative. I get that and I get that the fact everyone had a blast will override comments or concerns. Perhaps once the blush of first happiness fades, there will be more opportunity for the organizers to look critically at the content.
I mean what are they going to do in Aberquerque? Tours of the airport?
It was a lot of fun meeting you – I wish I would have been able to attend the connference, but at least I had a few nights with you all! It was wonderful to put a face behind the blog 🙂
I’m not sure it would have done much (although you likely would have had more author interaction than just random drunken escapades – or perhaps that was just us!).
It was wonderful meeting you and I hear you snuck away without many pictures! You sly devil…
You were pretty gorgeous and awesome yourself. 🙂 Your sense of humor just does not get the recognition it should!
It was a great time, but yeah, I really like Tam’s idea about the anonymous feedback survey. Scheduling anything before 11 am in NOLA was probably a bad plan…
No it does not! People should realize my genius. Ha.
Those early mornings kind of sucked. Not to mention the brunch thingy was supposed to go to 11 but all the prizes/food/people were pretty much long gone by 10. The organizers were already packing up by the time we rolled in. So really.. who the hell got up at 8am after that bar crawl? Insanity.
Pictures! Yes I want pictures! And I want to know about the retreat too. I have loads of experience with big social internet meetings. ( from a travellers site, so we went to see things during the day but the biggest part was the social thing, just hanging out together).
I hear next year will be in Albuquerque (sp?)
Yea that’s the scuttlebutt. I’m with Tam that I’m not sure I have any interest in going to Alburquerque. Plus it would depend on the actual content offered. The social aspect is wonderful and clearly the reason we all go but I’d be more tempted to try to get people to meet up in another (more fun) city to be honest.
Tracy has a few pictures up on her site you can see and I’ll get some up on here within a few days. We’re all doing guest posts over on Janna’s site so definitely check those posts out. They’re all on GRL and promise to be with pictures.
Yes, I wondered about A’que as a tourist destination. It doesn’t sound so exciting and in no way as fun as NOLA
Stealth bitch side. I like it. I might use it in the future with your permission. Wait, I hope I was one of those people. I am NOT all sweetness and light dammit. lol
It was so damned fun and wonderful to meet you. I loved the fact that we (the bloggers) could all stay together and still keep laughing as much as we did. The people are definitely what made this experience for me.
I was drunk off my ass twice and never, thank the heavens, prayed to the porcelain god. Sorry to hear you did but hey, what better way to get to know new plumbing? I mean, really.
Feel free! And you’re definitely one of those people because you come across as all sweetness and light! That is until you say something hilarious and the truth comes out… I love it.
I keep thinking of us as the witches of eastwick having the best time. It was great that everyone could do their own thing while still mostly hanging out together. Being drunk with a group is so much better and even worth being slightly sick for. Thankfully mine was more perfunctory than anything (though I think I was still drunk on Sunday lol).
It was so great meeting you and I hope you and Kris have a fabulous time. No walking though…
She lives in LA. NO ONE walks anywhere in LA. LOL
There are good reasons for that! Though sometimes you can walk faster than drive with the traffic.
Oh good, I’m glad you were talking about me. It IS all about me. lol (OMG I think I’m turning into Kris!).
I loved that we had so much fun and really got along for the most part. No one felt bad when we broke off from each other and that was wonderful. No hard feelings.
We’re actually going walking today up to a museum. I haven’t told Kris yet that it’s an up hill walk. lol
haha Good luck with that.. hope neither of you die. Which museum are you going to?
We went to the William S. Hart museum here in Santa Clarita. He was a silent film star and his home is now a museum. It was quite fun except for that fucking trek up the hill/mountain. Kris was cussing me out. Of course I was cussing me out too! lol
These comments make me miss our convo’s!! I didn’t nearly get to talk to you as much as I wanted to, Kassa!! *miss ya*
I actually pondered on the plane about my after party post for Janna; What was the highlight of the GRL? Well, that was meeting you all and having a blast together. You guys, aside from meeting some of my favorite authors, made the GRL a wild, fantastic ride when upon ending I wanted to scream; do-over or again, again!! The only two things I absolutely had a ball with were the JJJ and the Barcrawl, which were in fact organized by friends of the GRL.
The Riverboat cruise was nice but there were hardly any books – yes, i can still get annoyed by that fact damnit. I hear all the peeps talking about coming back from a Con with a boatload of signed books and what was I able to buy; 3 books 0.O I think the publishers only shipped 5-10 books per author or title when there were over 200 attendees *sigh* The rest of the schedule was nice but I could’ve had a great time somewhere else as well.
I kinda pitched the idea to Ethan Dat to have the GRL in Amsterdam next year around the Gay Pride in August. Look at this site: http://www.canalparade.nl/index.php?pageid=126
Doesn’t that scream celebrating the GLBT, party and fun to you all?? Now we get albuquerque *ugh*
I know..especially know that I know you play WoW! I can talk about video games for HOURS without ever getting tired. It’s my second love after books.
Did you get to any of the publisher spotlights? I hear they had more books but I agree, I’m surprised there wasn’t a vendor room that was set up for the length of the retreat where you could get books and things. Hell or even have that vendor room for a few hours on one day with all the possible publishers. Perhaps they just didn’t have room for that but I’d have been interested in buying bulk cds from publishers if they had multiple books from an author.
Hey.. I’m all about gay pride in Amsterdam. I may have to come to that anyway! I say we do a girls weekend Blogger Gay Rom Lit 😀
Now that is a good idea 😀
Gay pride is first weekend of august