Monday, February 27, 2006
A Cold, Rainy Day in South Carolina
Just got back last night from attending the South Carolina Book Festival. Man, was it cold! I had my jacket, but I needed a scarf, gloves, a fireplace, you name it. Many people said, "But Millenia, this is good weather, it's only like....40 degrees."
Hello? I'm from SOUTH FLORIDA. Born and raised. We don't do 40 degrees very well here! LOL
It rained all day on Saturday - and I mean all day - but we still had an enjoyable time. Met some fabulous fellow authors, and had great conversation.
The festival was very well attended (despite the rain) and even more well organized, which compared to others, was a refreshing experience. Kudos to the director, Paula Watkins Millen, Mary Harris, and the rest of their staff for organizing a great event.
I had the pleasure of being in the company of some great co-panelists including Beth Webb Hart, whose debut novel (GRACE AT LOW TIDE) I bought and can't wait to read - she autographed it to me so warmly. Also Mary Alice Monroe - whose work I've always enjoyed over the years - Michelle Buckman, Jim Daher, and Ron Rash. All great company!
My long-time fave Sandra Brown attended as well, but as luck would have it, I didn't get to see her presentation. Our schedules clashed. What a bummer, I know. :-(
Saturday evening they had a pig pickin' food gathering for the authors - real down home southern barbecue, fried chicken, potato salad, ice tea, etc.....let's just say that, after a small sampling of each goodie, I think I left the restaurant a card-carrying diabetic. :) It was great. I spent lots of time chatting it up with novelist Sofia Quintero (aka Black Artemis) and a couple gentlemen writers, local talents. We had a great time.
Essie Mae Washington-Williams came to the pig-pickin' and the local guys filled us in on the uproar that resulted in the state when Ms. Williams was revealed to be the daughter of card-carrying racist, Senator Strom Thurmond.
Also had a great time getting political with author Lynne Hinton - who cracked me up to no end (have a great time on the road, Lynne!), Gayden Metcalfe - who cracked me up even more (thanks for the tip about bean dip ;), Jackie Cooper, Reshonda Tate Billingsley, Electa Rome Parks, Tyehimba Jess and others.
It was nice meeting and chatting it up with everybody. If you weren't there, sorry you missed it. It was a great time!