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Opinions needed on blogging during RWA

Last year I kind of did a live blog from RWA using Twitter. This inserted hundreds of 2 sentence blog entries onto DA. It annoyed some people. So in preparation for this year, I’d like to hear what readers would want in terms of liveblogging the event.

I didn’t go to many seminars last year, instead I went to signings. I am thinking of foregoing the signings this year to attend some seminars. If I did attend seminars, what ones are you interested in hearing about?

I heard some people were irritated by the name dropping, i.e., I’m standing next to Judith McNaught or stuff like that. Is that beyond boring?

So, please let me know what you would like to see in terms of content and accessibility of the liveblogging of the 2008 RWA Event. Thanks guys. Don’t be afraid to be critical!

Jane Litte is the founder of Dear Author, a lawyer, and a lover of pencil skirts. She self publishes NA and contemporaries (and publishes with Berkley and Montlake) and spends her downtime reading romances and writing about them. Her TBR pile is much larger than the one shown in the picture and not as pretty. You can reach Jane by email at jane @ dearauthor dot com


  1. Keishon
    Jun 19, 2008 @ 09:43:42

    Forget your critics – do what you want, it is YOUR blog. Srsly.

    Plenty of PICS please. Loved that and whatever else you like or think readers would like to know as far as trends, what books to look out for and so on and so on.

  2. Kmont
    Jun 19, 2008 @ 10:00:37

    I would love to know what authors you saw and/or talked to. Heck, if one was standing next to me, I’d want to tell someone too.

    I agree with Keishon. It’s your blog, do what you want to. Pics are great though, good call.

    BUT then again, if you do go to some seminars, I would love to know what the scene is at some of the paranormal ones. :)

    And if you happen to stand next to Kim Harrison…I. Want. To. Know.

  3. Portia Da Costa
    Jun 19, 2008 @ 10:27:01

    Oh yes, I think you should definitely do what you want with your own blog, and also give people reading it a nice ‘as it happens’ flavour of RWA if they can’t make it there themselves.

    I’m hoping to Tweet from RWA myself! It’ll probably cost me dear, as my phone service is in the UK, but hey, it’s a once a year special event, so who cares! :)

  4. Jaci Burton
    Jun 19, 2008 @ 10:30:18

    I liked what you did last year. Of course I was there. But still read the blog and it was fun seeing it from both sides.

    This year please post a lot about how much the conference is lacking because Jaci Burton isn’t there. ;-)

  5. Francois
    Jun 19, 2008 @ 10:39:11

    I find that kind of thing really boring. Name dropping and heres stuff you can’t buy yet? Blah. If theres real news then fair enough, the rest of the stuff is only interesting if you’re there. To me anyway. I only read this blog for the reviews and the real news anyway. Most of of the general comment and stuff about minor authors passes me by.

  6. Jana
    Jun 19, 2008 @ 10:40:22

    I personally really enjoyed last year. It was fun following you throughout the convention. And I didn’t find the ‘name dropping’ annoying, I was totally living vicariously through this blog. =) (Besides, I don’t really think what you were doing was ‘name-dropping’ in the classic sense, of, “oh look how important I am, because I know so-and-so.”)

  7. Sherry Thomas
    Jun 19, 2008 @ 10:41:50

    Since you asked. :-)

    I do prefer longer daily recaps over short 2-sentence posts. Those become like a diet of dainty hors d’oeuvres without the full meal ever getting served: I get progressively more hungry.

    On the other hand, I don’t mind the I’m-standing-next-to bits at all, cuz part of the fun of RWA is that you do get to see in person the stars of the genre. Like how I breathlessly recounted to Janine that I saw Patricia Gaffney walking past me at the booksellers’ tea and flagged her down to ask her if she were THE Patricia Gaffney. And just last month I was able to boast to a huge Nora Roberts fan I met in Bangalore, India that I’d stood right next to La Nora in an elevator in Dallas.

  8. Kathryn S
    Jun 19, 2008 @ 10:45:45

    I like the longer recaps too. And pictures. And Jane, if you could talk more about ME, that would be great. lol. Seriously, dude — it’s your blog. Do whatchoo wanna do.

    And Sherry — be warned that if you’re in San Fran, and I find you, I will make you terribly uncomfortable with my praise for your debut! I loved it.

  9. Jennifer Estep
    Jun 19, 2008 @ 10:52:05

    I’d like to see trend news and books/authors people are buzzing about. What folks say is selling well, what isn’t, who or what genre is going to be the next big thing … those kind of posts.

    Also, are you guys going to do the thing where folks can vote for who they think’s going to win the RITAS? I really liked that last year, even though I got maybe one winner right. I see the post on the side of the homepage, but last year, I thought it was more like a tourney …

  10. Kimber An
    Jun 19, 2008 @ 10:52:22

    My only suggestion is to try remembering a lot of your readers will be people who’ve never been to RWA Nationals. Many won’t even be members. I’m not yet. RWA does want new members. Don’t they? Considering that, I hope everyone blogging from the event will refrain from negative social talk. Most people I know don’t want to attend events or be a part of a group which will make them feel like crap. We’re not in high school anymore, yanno. We have a choice now.

  11. Gennita Low
    Jun 19, 2008 @ 10:53:06

    Just blog about my street team at RWA, Jane. We’re taking over.

  12. Julie Leto
    Jun 19, 2008 @ 10:55:42

    I’m going to be at the conference, but at the end of my surgery recovery, so I won’t be out and about that much…so please, the more updates, the better! As a “minor author” I like hearing about the rest of my kind, LOLOL!

    Your blog…do your own thing!

  13. Anji
    Jun 19, 2008 @ 11:11:50

    I really liked the updates last year – and I thought the comment about standing next to Judith McNaught was great. I would have done the same thing.

    And yeah, it would be great to hear about new trends and other stuff from the seminars!!!

  14. kristenmary
    Jun 19, 2008 @ 11:15:28

    I really liked the updates last year. As someone who will never go it was fun to experience it through your eyes.

  15. Mel-O-Drama
    Jun 19, 2008 @ 11:46:44

    I liked what you did last year…and since I’m not going to be there this year, I will like the play-by-play name dropping even more.

  16. katiebabs
    Jun 19, 2008 @ 11:47:16

    Pictures, interiews with authors and the sights you enjoyed in San Fran.
    And of course the awesome group of bloggers you will meet! *ahem*
    And name drop all you want! :D

  17. Angela James
    Jun 19, 2008 @ 11:50:23

    I liked what you did last year and I was there! But you did and saw things that were totally different from my experience. I also know that it’s a lot easier to do on-the-spot 2 sentence posts than it is to sit down at the end of each long conference day and recap. Too much mental energy has often already been expended and you forget things as you go. I say stick with what you’re doing. Oh, I’d love to see you cover a workshop on epublishing. Maybe, oh, a myths in epublishing workshop? ;)

  18. Chantal
    Jun 19, 2008 @ 11:50:26

    Pictures! Lots of them.

    I loved the name dropping. I though it was great to be able to see who you got to meet and stand next too.
    Those were my favourite parts to read.

    Really though, you can’t make everyone happy. If you change how you did it last year, then the people who had no problems with anything last year will just complain this year.

    You have a good system-keep at it.

  19. Leah
    Jun 19, 2008 @ 11:58:46

    I can’t imagine when I’ll be able to go to RWA–oh wait, maybe when my novel wins the Golden Heart in 2010–hahahahahahahaha! But I like the live blogging, so keep it up!

  20. Sarah Frantz
    Jun 19, 2008 @ 12:01:38

    I loved what you did last year. I loved the author squeeing, the pictures, the short posts that I KNOW are so much easier than the long recaps. Although I loved the long recaps too, but reading the short ones, knowing you were posting as it was happening, was really fun. I hope to be there next year, doing some sessions, meeting some people, so I love seeing what I might be doing!

  21. Shiloh Walker
    Jun 19, 2008 @ 12:27:57

    Your blog, Jane, you do what you want.

    And…uh… if you end up standing next to Nora Roberts, can you squee a little bit for me? ;)

  22. BevQB
    Jun 19, 2008 @ 12:30:28

    Most memorable moment from last year’s RWA blog…

    Title appeared as

    Sherrilyn Kenyon has a Big Ass

    it wasn’t until after it was clicked on that the rest of the title was visible: “…Swan on Her Head”

    My vote is for you to do whatever YOU enjoy doing. I really enjoyed what you did last year, although MORE PEEKTURES would be ever so nice. ;-D And keep on name dropping! Some of us are experiencing RWA vicariously through you, and if we were there, WE would sooo be saying “OOOH, there’s that evil genius editor, Angela James!”

    Maybe a compromise for those that want less but longer posts? Make entries throughout the day into a draft post, then publish the draft a few times a day.

  23. Aoife
    Jun 19, 2008 @ 12:50:41

    Seriously, I think you should do whatever you feel like doing, and people who aren’t interested in name-dropping, or the two line updates or whatever can skim past them, or come back to DA when RWA is over. Last year the thing that was most entertaining to me was how much you (and other bloggers) were obviously enjoying the whole experience, and I appreciated you sharing the fun.

  24. Michelle
    Jun 19, 2008 @ 13:03:05

    I enjoyed the name dropping too. Do whatever works for you. I enjoyed last year. Also loved the pictures.

  25. Anion
    Jun 19, 2008 @ 13:03:28

    I had a hard time finding/following the RWA posts last year, tucked up in the corner as they were. It felt like I was missing a lot of posts. Maybe I wasn’t, but it felt that way.

  26. heather (errantdreams)
    Jun 19, 2008 @ 13:06:44

    It’s your blog, so do what most interests you. That said, when little posts go by quickly, they can be tough to keep up with. You might consider adding a few sentences here and there to a draft that you save, then do a collective post one or more times a day.

  27. Mel-O-Drama
    Jun 19, 2008 @ 13:34:35

    Jane, you could always use Loud Twitter:

    They’ll compile however many hours of tweets from twitter and post them to your blog for you or email them to you so you can post them yourself. That way it reads as one blog instead of little individual and constantly changing tweets.

  28. Jane
    Jun 19, 2008 @ 13:35:47

    Oooh, I like that Mel. I’m going to look at that tonight. Thanks for the update.

  29. Janine
    Jun 19, 2008 @ 13:38:46

    I would prefer posts that are somewhat longer, myself, but if that takes the fun out of it for you then do what makes you happy. I also think it would be great to hear about the workshops, especially anything about future publishing trends. If you have a favorite author who is giving a workshop, it might also be fun to hear about that, too.

  30. ArkansasCyndi
    Jun 19, 2008 @ 13:44:08

    Name dropping.. Love it. Been guilty of it. :) If you’re standing next to “INSERT BIG AUTHOR NAME HERE”, then I want to know. How was she dressed? Did she talk to you? Did you gush or just faint? I need to live the conference vicariously through your experience because I’m not going to RWA this year so I’d love live tid-bits throughout the day.

  31. Robin
    Jun 19, 2008 @ 13:46:39

    Maybe you could have a special place that people click on for RWA posts. So whatever short and long ones could be read in order in one central location. Then you could do both, and people wouldn’t feel like they were missing anything.

  32. Jayne
    Jun 19, 2008 @ 14:02:33

    If you're standing next to “INSERT BIG AUTHOR NAME HERE”, then I want to know. How was she dressed? Did she talk to you? Did you gush or just faint?

    That’s what was missing for me with the short posts. Sure you just saw Big Name Author but…was that all? I want a few more details. I like the idea of posting about seminars this year. As many people said, I’m not going to be there and might never make a RWA conference so I’d like to know about bit about those.

    The long version of the twitter sounds ideal. You could store the short posts until later then add a few lines here or there to flesh them out. And pics. Lots of pics!

  33. Shannon Stacey
    Jun 19, 2008 @ 20:12:01

    I wasn’t annoyed by either the Twitter or the namedropping because I was living vicariously through you. But more pics would be cool, kthxbai.

  34. Jane
    Jun 19, 2008 @ 20:21:32

    So I am hearing lots more pictures and options for viewing posts, both the the short and long ones. I think I can actually accommodate that with the help of Mel’s link above.

    I’m thinking I’ll create a special page for just RWA posts, advertise it on the front page of DA and then have two columns. One for the twittering and one for the longer posts.

    I heard that wordpress was supposed to come out with an iphone blogging application that allows you to blog straight from the phone using the pictures you take with the phone. If that’s the case, it will be super easy to snap a ton of shots and post them. Yeah for technology.

    Thanks for the input ladies.

  35. veinglory
    Jun 19, 2008 @ 20:25:18

    How about blogging as usual? The problem with the one line posts was they didn’t make a lot of sense, to me anyway.

  36. Angela James
    Jun 19, 2008 @ 20:29:57

    I would love a wordpress application like that.

  37. Tabitha
    Jun 19, 2008 @ 21:32:25

    I would love the name dropping. I’m new to reading blogs and it’s great for me to live vicariously through others writings and pictures. I can’t wait to hear about others authors, how they are in person, etc etc….thanks, can’t wait to hear/read/see about it!!

  38. Angela
    Jun 20, 2008 @ 03:23:53

    I’d like a mixture of twitter posts and in-depth posts. Twitter only was killer–I was glued to the computer, waiting for updates. lol If I know there’s a more comprehensive post coming, I won’t feel so left out. *g*

  39. Shreela
    Jun 20, 2008 @ 07:21:24

    I didn’t read your blog last year, so I’ll just give my opinion about combining tweets with blogs: Ugh! I like my blog posts with more than 140 characters. I’ll usually sub to a blogger’s tweets to see what they’re up to, but if it’s just a repeat of each other, or just tweets about each and every blog post, I’ll unsub from their Twitter. And I’ve unsubbed from blogs who mostly tweeted with a plugin instead of really blogging. I stay subbed to bloggers tweets if they’re unique from each other though.

    When you twittered about famous authors last year, did you include anything interesting they were saying or doing, or just say you were standing near them? The “just standing near them’s” could get boring if there was a lot of name-dropping without anything else I guess.

  40. Leeann Burke
    Jun 20, 2008 @ 07:23:43

    Personally, I love it when people drop names. LOL

    Since this is your blog I agree with what everyone else seems to be saying, do what you feel like blogging about.

    I know I’ll be logging in to read your blogs as I do every day.

  41. Sherry Thomas
    Jun 20, 2008 @ 08:32:24

    Kathryn S,

    Lol, thanks. And I’m easy to find. Where there is free food, there I will be.

  42. Rebecca
    Jun 20, 2008 @ 08:55:18

    Hey…it’s YOUR conference experience.

    Share whatever you like.


    Only ‘should” I would give you is to do what YOU want to do.

    It’s the only way conference should be done, you know?

  43. Julia Quinn
    Jun 20, 2008 @ 09:23:04

    Totally taking this off-topic, but Sherry, when were you in Bangalore? I was just there!

    JQ, not mentioning where I am right now because you just might have to perish of jealousy

  44. Jody W.
    Jun 20, 2008 @ 10:32:08

    Do whatever fits your conference schedule and your activity level the best. Twit away if that’s all you can squeeze in. Any naysayers can lump it unless they’re the ones signing your blog paycheck. I do think a prominent link to all RWA stuff in one place would be kind, and I enjoy photos.

    Isn’t there some blog that maintains a list of all RWA National posts in a central location? Has it revved up for the season yet?

  45. Sherry Thomas
    Jun 20, 2008 @ 12:26:37


    I was in Bangalore from May 25 to about June 6 of this year, with a few days out in Kerala.

    Most of the time I keep my fits of jealousy well under control, but if you are in Mr. Clooney’s villa on Lake Como, then by God, I swear I will find you and drag you kicking and screaming from his eighteenth-century bed myself. :-)

  46. Saskia Walker
    Jun 20, 2008 @ 12:33:44

    I loved your RWA posts! It was a really fun, immediate way to share in the event from a distance. I’m going to be there myself this year but I’ll read your reportage when I get home, however you decide to write it up.

  47. JoB
    Jun 20, 2008 @ 14:04:42

    but if you are in Mr. Clooney's villa on Lake Como, then by God, I swear I will find you and drag you kicking and screaming from his eighteenth-century bed myself. :-)

    Jo, wholly in sympathy, can’t help wondering how you know what Mr. Clooney’s bed looks like …

    Returning to the actual topic of discussion …
    I loved the RWA-rama last year. More. More!
    More photos. More candid comments. yes.

  48. Angela
    Jun 20, 2008 @ 19:53:30

    What about podcasts? On the spot interviews/conversations with readers, writers, editors and agents?

  49. Jane
    Jun 20, 2008 @ 20:32:40

    Hmm. Interesting concept. I wonder if I could do that straight from the iPhone. You’d think so, no?

  50. Julia Quinn
    Jun 23, 2008 @ 08:41:11


    Not Lake Como, but close!

    JQ, who did hear recently from an autograph seeker (it’s her hobby; she has over 6000) that George Clooney is the nicest celeb ever.

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