Monday, July 22, 2013

In which I meet my editors and forget to take pictures - Cynthia Reese

I am horrid. Just terrible. Ask The Husband. I have gone for years missing the capture of important moments in The Kiddo's life because I ... gasp ... forget to take pictures.

Used to, I had an excuse. I had to take a camera with me, and I always forgot to get it. So I could share the blame with The Husband because of course HE forgot to remind me.

But now? Now I have an iPhone. And now I have a camera with me. All the time.

Saturday I was fortunate enough to have lunch with my editors, the amazing Victoria Curran and Kathryn Lye, at Atlanta's South City Kitchen Midtown. They were in town for RWA '13, which I would have attended, except my anniversary fell right in the middle of the conference. So, since it would be a horrid sin for a romance author not to celebrate her anniversary with her hubby, I stayed home.

The Husband and I had planned to have a romantic dinner at home, while The Kiddo spent the night with her aunt, but then The Husband came down with food poisoning the day before our anniversary. So on our anniversary night, I wound up washing dishes and thinking how I COULD have been with all my author friends in Atlanta.

I consoled myself with the idea that I would, the very next day, meet Kathryn Lye for the first time and see Victoria again. It was a mighty fine consolation prize, I tell you!

Harlequin editors are a special breed, just like Harlequin authors. I've heard horror stories from friends who are published with other publishing houses, and I always give thanks that I have such good editors.

Like any big corporation, Harlequin has its share of shifts. I've wound up dealing with four editors since I first sold, and at least two before. All of them were dream editors ... it's exactly like you hope for before The Call: an editor who will bounce ideas with you, who will tell you what precisely is not working about your story ... and what precisely IS working as well! I've never had an editor with Harlequin who didn't care about my family or the catastrophes that so frequently befall us all. And when I had a scary first diagnosis of ovarian cancer -- thank God it was incorrect -- that I mentioned in passing to one of my editors for Heartwarming, Victoria was on the phone the very next day with warm wishes and good thoughts.

And I'm not special. I'm one of dozens of authors that they deal with, and they treat ALL of their authors this way. It makes you feel so valued -- you are not just a churner out of words, but a member of the Harlequin family.

I've recently been assigned to Kathryn Lye, and I admit, I was nervous. Change is never easy for me. But she has been terrific, which should have been NO surprise, since like I said, Harlequin editors are terrific! On the phone, she was so easy to talk with, and in person? Like Victoria, she's a ray of sunshine. They both follow the Ann Landers advice about good conversation and keep you talking about your favorite subject -- yourself. ;-) (Well, my daughter is my favorite subject, and close behind would be writing.)

So that's why I'm kicking myself that I can't show you a picture of all three of us together. I did think of it -- when we were all digging into our delicious lunches. But I hate photos of myself eating, and I figure they wouldn't like it, either. But at the end, they were due somewhere else, and I needed to make the three-hour trip home, so we all just hugged and went our separate ways, none of us thinking again about The Picture. We were just enjoying our time together -- which is what I tell The Husband every time I forget to take a pix of The Kiddo in a Very Important Moment. I was storing up memories that will last longer than a photo.

He doesn't buy it. And I suspect ... you won't, either!

6 comments:

  1. Cynthia, I'll buy it. Mostly because I use my camera phone so seldom I can never remember how to take pictures with it. My kids just roll their eyes even though they know I'm techie challenged. I did remember to take a camera to RWA in Anaheim last year and had a nice waitress take a picture of editors with a group of us who went to dinner. But I had lunch with Victoria and Paula along with 2 other writers and totally spaced--didn't get pictures. Just glad you had fun. Sorry your anniversary went awry.

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  2. I did the same thing! A one on one meeting...dinner...AND the Harlequin party-no picture! Luckily Karen Rock has a few I think:)
    I couldn't agree more-Harlequin editors are amazing:)

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  3. Yeah, Harlequin editors are great. They care about the books and the authors - that makes all the difference in the world!

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  4. Cynthia - I buy it as well. You painted a pretty good picture of lunch, so we can manage without the photo. Hope your husband is well again and that you plan another celebration. We are all lucky that Harlequin editors are so caring. I, too, often need their indulgence.

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  5. LOL, last time my husband had food poisoning, it was my cooking. And, my anniversary was the Saturday before last and we spent it driving from Phx to Raton, eleven hours in the car with an EIGHT YEAR OLD. Now, that's love.

    I love pictures and the Iphone has definitely helped tremendously with my taking of them.

    Next year, San Antonio. I say we all go!

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