This past weekend, I was honored to participate in a romance readers & writers event in Charlotte, NC called When the Heart Dreams. Games, activities, workshops, and books abounded. It was a great time. I actually shared headline space with New York Times Bestselling author Sabrina Jeffries! How cool is that? Most of the dozen or so authors in attendance write general market romance, so I did my best to shine my Inspirational light while I was there. It might have helped that I bribed people with chocolate. Ha!
I hosted an afternoon workshop about plotting with M&M’s. We talked a little about where authors get their ideas for their stories, then we randomly generated plots based on what M&M color came out of each person’s bag. We had about 5 groups working together with chocolate generated genres, tropes, conflicts, heroes, heroines, and random items. The results were pretty hilarious and very creative. Paranormal Romance with a werewolf soccer coach and a marine biologist mermaid. Romantic Suspense with an anonymous letter secreted away in an antique armoire. Big city contemporary with a ukulele-playing street musician wearing Ben Franklin spectacles courting a grad student who happens to work at the Starbucks on his performance corner. Western romance on the roof of a saloon during a flood with love budding between a female fugitive and the sheriff sworn to justice. Oh, and down forget the small town romance with the prize-winning pig who brings two people together over trampled flowers.
Next time I get stuck with writer’s block, I might have to try this very sophisticated brainstorming method.
Here are some photos from the weekend:
Got to meet two fabulous readers and new friends, Rachel and Lee Anna. They made the time extra special.
- If you were designing your ideal reader weekend, what would it look like?