I know I'm in my own little world, but it's OK.
They know me here...


Tuesday, July 24, 2012

CONFERENCE TIME: Memorable Moments with...Serena Tatti

With the conference season just around the corner, I begin counting down the days until I meet up with friends I usually only see once a year.

So much gets packed into 3-4 days and everyone's experiences are different. We go away with a variety of highlights or "a-ha" moments.

I thought I'd poll some of my RWAustralia & RWNew Zealand friends and ask them to recall their most memorable moments of the conferences they've been to.

Over the coming weeks I'll be featuring these as snippets and as you'll read, you'll see just how special coming to conference can be. For any first timers out there, don't be nervous or afraid of going to conference. More often than not you're going to find yourself welcomed VERY warmly and will probably go away with a host of friends whom you can't wait to meet next year at conference.


Serena's Memories: My favourite memories of the RWA conferences? There are so many! But I’ve decided to write about my first ever RWA conference.

I’d previously been to a small conference in Adelaide run by the Australian Chapter of the Romance Writers of America where I’d met some wonderful like-minded people including a few published authors both new and quite famous.

The wonderful Valerie Parv
This was to be my first *big* conference. I remember the excitement of gathering in the foyer of the Carlton Crest in Melbourne. The buzz was amazing, the atmosphere almost electric. I stood talking to my friends from the Melbourne Romance Writers Guild (I’d found the Guild through RWA’s Hearts Talk!) We were all very excited.

A familiar face came up to us and said, “You’re the girls from Adelaide!” We all replied that we’d met in Adelaide but we were the Melbourne Mob. The lovely Valerie Parv and her gorgeous husband, Paul treated us like long-lost friends. They stood and talked to us for a good half hour. From that day onwards they knew us each one of us by name.

In what other industry would someone so well-known and loved mingle so freely with the people who were just starting out? The romance writing industry has the most supportive community that I’ve ever been involved with. I can’t think of anywhere else where people cheer when someone else gets that coveted promotion (i.e. sells a book).

Over the years I have made many friends, some published, some aspiring to be published, some famous, some not-so-famous. The one thing we all have in common is the feeling of camaraderie towards our fellow authors.

I can’t wait for the Diamonds Are Forever Conference on the Gold Coast. I know I’ll be learning, laughing and catching up with good friends as well as making new friends.


  1. Aw Serena, I'm blushing now, but they are happy memories aren't they? And we're still making new ones. Thanks Kylie for sharing this.

  2. What lovely memories, Serena. It's crazy that some of the most precious people in my life are those I see only once a year at this conference. But what's even more amazing is that each year I go home with new precious treasures to add to that friendship list.

    Two years ago, I was speaking with some of the Oz publishers who gushed (almost in shock) that they had never attended a writer's conference like it; that the level of warmth and camaraderie was almost never seen at other writers conferences.

    Well done us!

    Serena, Kylie and Valerie - you are, all three, treasures in my life and I can't wait to hug you all soon!

  3. Thanks, Serena, for your memories. It's so true that there are few groups where everyone is excited by others' promotions. It's something to treasure about RWA.

    See you soon!

    Cath xo

  4. Serena, so true about how welcoming and inclusive the RWA conferences are. It's always a shock for newbies that the published authors are so friendly and approachable. I know I was blown away by that.

  5. I'm not a writer of romance or even a proper writer of any genre - although I do recall managing to pen a rather steamy paragraph about a piece of chocolate at one of Valerie's workshops at the conference. I LOVED the friendliness and inclusiveness of the RWA conference I attended in Melbourne. But more than that I LOVE LOVE LOVE the love and lasting friendship of the wonderful writers there.