Monday, January 16, 2012


by Carolyn Brown

Can you believe that it’s already time to register for the RWA Conference! Wow! What happened to the time? Didn’t we just fly out of NY a few weeks ago?

I got plumb giddy just thinking of seeing all my writing friends again this year. My sisters in vice so to speak. I read once that all we ever needed to know about life we learned in kindergarten. Since I didn’t go to kindergarten, I figured I must have missed out on what I needed to know about life.

I was so disappointed.

Then I read an article that declared all we need to know about life we could learn from reading T-shirts. I read lots of them. Like ...

If they don’t have chocolate in Heaven, then I ain’t going.

At my age, I've seen it all, done it all, heard it all, I just can't remember it all.

My mother is a travel agent for guilt trips.

I could surely relate to most of them, especially that part about chocolate. Can you imagine eternity with no chocolate?

But I couldn’t read every tee shirt in the world so I must not know everything about life after all. Then I realized that maybe I’d learned my lessons another way. Suddenly I knew those who went to kindergarten or those who create tee shirts don’t have a thing on me.

With that in mind I realized that all I ever needed to know about life I learned at RWA Conferences with my sisters, not of the blood but of the heart, because we understand the pains, joys and solitude of the profession we have chosen.

That reminded me of some of my favorite sister quotes:

What’s the good of news if you haven’t a sister to share it with? —Jenny DeVries

Ain’t it the truth! When I made the New York Times list last summer (I still can’t believe it!) the first folks I thought of were my author friends and I couldn’t wait to hit the lap top and send the message to them.

How do people make it through life without a sister. —Sara Corpening

Oh, my! How would I know where the best places to eat are if one of my sisters (Hi Shirley Marks) didn’t scout out the territory a day earlier than I can get to the conference. Or know how to work the elevators or where in the devil that room is that we are supposed to meet all the other Avalon authors? Without another of my writing sisters (Hello Carolyn Hughey), I would have never ventured out to get a slice of the best pizza in New York City.

Sisters are different flowers from the same garden. —author unknown

We might write in different genres. We might sell to different publishers but we are truly just different flowers. Take a look around at all the writers at the conference. Don’t you feel a kinship with every one of them? Those who are struggling to get published…I was there a few years ago. Those who are winning the big awards…oh, the glory of doing that some day!

There can be no situation in life in which the conversation of my dear sister will not administer some comfort to me. —Mary Montagu

Oh, yeah! Rejections? I whine to my writing sisters. Big news of another sale? I can’t wait to get to the phone or the lap top. Deadlines? They understand and comfort me while my eyes go blurry and my brain cells stop functioning at the end of the day.
by Carolyn Brown

In the cookies of life, sisters are the chocolate chips. —author unknown

Yes, ma’am! And they’ll save you a place at the table for the RITA’s because you were having a bad hair evening. Plus they just make everything better and sweeter!

A sister is a gift to the heart, a friend to the spirit, a golden thread to the meaning of life. —Isodora James

And that says it all. I can’t wait to see you all this summer. I’m going to sitting in my chair in front of the computer on the day the RWA folks open up for registration. If I’m not the first one to register it will be because my fingers don’t type as fast as one of my other sisters.


Carolyn Hughey said...

This is definitely true, Carolyn, we are sisters who have been through some tough times, but we're enjoying the good life now. Whoo hoo on that one!

And you! Wow, I've been in awe of you since the day we met via the Internet. You're an inspiration to everyone who meets you, and I continue to be bowled over by your ability to chug along and whip out those books faster than I can finish my coffee. Here's to you my wonderful sister!

Gina/Katherine said...

What Carolyn H. said. Just spending time in your golden circle in NY at last year's conference made me a better writer. For all we share, all we understand each other, and all the laughs, thank you to both Carolyns and all the other Avalon authors!

Loretta C. Rogers said...

Great article. Especially enjoyed all the sayings about sisters/sisterhoods. Where would we be without these kindred spirits who not only whine with us, but shine with us, too.

Grace Burrowes said...

I've heard new author after new author remark on how supportive writers are of each other, and it's the absolute trufe. I realized when I went to my first conference that my frame of reference for professional collegiality was either attorneys or competitive dressage riders. Both groups could learn a lot about altruism and true community from romance authors.

Carolyn Brown said...

Hey, ladies...Carolyn, Gina and Loretta. Thanks for stopping today. Don't know where I'd be without my writing buddies who understand the ins and outs of this game we're all a part of!

Jayne Ormerod... said...

Nothing I love better than a great t-shirt quote...I want to steal my son's that says "Growing old is mandatory. Growing up is otional."

Love the "sisterhood" we share as Avalon authors!

Fran McNabb said...

Carolyn, I always love your blogs, but this one is priceless. You are so right. We do need our sisterhood of writers because most of our friends and family don't understand what we go through.
Wish I could see all of you at RWA this year but it's a little too far -- maybe next year.

Sandy Cody said...

I agree with everything said about the importance of sisterhood, have to add I've run into some fine brothers too.

Carolyn Brown said...

Grace, it's so nice to have you stop by! We have learned a lot from our romance community, haven't we? To those of you who aren't familiar with Grace's works, she is a NYT and USA Today best seller author of absolutely fabulous regency romances.

Carolyn Brown said...

Ain't it the truth. Someone asked me when I was 50 (ahem...that wasn't so long ago) what I was going to be when I grew up. My answer was, "Do I have to decide today?"

Carolyn Brown said...

You got that right about folks not understanding. Don't you love it when someone says, "Oh, is that all you do?" LOL
I'll miss your smile this year but will definitely look forward to seeing you the next one. I think I figured out that when I grow up I'm going to be an author because I sure like the company it puts me in!

Carolyn Brown said...

Oh, yeah, there are some good brothers out there in the writing community, too! I ran into one romance writer in NYC who looked like he could model for one of my cowboy books, and he was trying to get his romance books published.