Sunday, July 17, 2011


by Carolyn Brown
Back when I was working at the newspaper, part of my job was doing the “Long Ago” column which involved going back into papers 100, 50, 40, 30, 20 and 10 years ago and finding out what happened in those years. Just a few little tidbits of information such as Watermelons sold for 59 cents fifty years ago or Mr. and Mrs. Buster Smith were the proud parents of a new baby girl born 40 years ago (I was careful to stay out of town for a week if I mentioned something that had to do with a woman’s age!)
While I was very carefully turning the pages of those fragile newspapers I was amazed at the way writing and newspaper business as a whole evolved through the years. A hundred years ago most obits went on the front page right along with birthday parties for kids, baby showers, etc. And most social events were wrapped up with the words: And a good time was had by all.
That’s the sentence that came to mind after the Avalon reception on Wednesday night at the RWA Conference in NYC last month. I met so many new people that my little brain couldn’t begin to remember all the names but what I do remember was the camaraderie among the authors and Ellen, Lia, Pyche and Jen. It was like going to a family reunion and excitement hung in the air all around us.
If the article could be written about our party that night back a hundred years ago, it might have sounded something like this:
A reception was held at the Avalon offices on Madison Avenue on Wednesday, June 29, for the romance authors and various other guests who write for that publishing company. Refreshments were an assortment of delicious finger foods along with wine and other beverages. Authors had pictures taken with the publisher, editor and staff members of the firm and enjoyed hours of visiting about their books. And a good time was had by all.
I’m not sure about all, but I sure had a wonderful evening, especially when I looked up at that big book case covering a whole wall and saw my books lined up right in there among all the other fantastic authors. There was so much energy in those offices that I wondered if Ellen, Lia, Psyche and Jen could feel it all the way through the next week.
Let me tell you, we sure hated to see the evening come to an end!
Now it’s back to the WIP for the authors, reading and decision making for the Avalon staff and business as usual. But I still feel a smile coming on when I think of those little words…and a good time was had by all!
Everyone in agreement?


Heidi said...

Great over-view of the event--which I could have been there!

Gina/Katherine said...

I whole-heartedly agree, Carolyn! It was a wonderful evening with warm and fun people who genuinely care about the business. Thanks for sharing your perspective.

Carolyn Hughey said...

It was absolutely a 'good time was had by all' event. And I agree, it was a family reunion.

Great article, Carolyn. Thanks for sharing.

Carolyn Brown said...

Heidi: You were missed!
Gina: We did have a good time, didn't we?
Carolyn: Thank you. I think anytime writers get together it's a "good time" for all!

Fran McNabb said...

Carolyn, I can't agree more. The party was great, and the people there were even better!I know Avalon will be moving soon, but in my mind, I'll have to think about the editors in these offices.
And, by the way, I loved talking with your husband. He's a doll. Thanks for commenting on the affair.

Shirley Marks said...

It was wonderful! I had the best time and it was so nice to finally meet the Avalon staff.

Sandy Cody said...

Sounds like everyone had a good time - hey, I'm having a good time just reading about it.

Jennifer Shirk said...

I had a blast too.
It was so nice meeting you there, Carolyn!