RNA Conference – where to start?

The Twitter and blogspheres have been full of praise for the Romantic Novelists’ Association Conference at the Old Royal Naval College, Greenwich last weekend. Rightly so. Jan and Roger masterminded the conference, the RNA stalwarts gave talks, introduced and chaired discussions and seamlessly supported the whole framework. Joanna Trollope gave the keynote speech and she took no prisoners. The venue was superb, the food satisfying and the accommodation reminded us nostalgically of student days. The sheer range of events as set out in the pre-conference bumpf exceeded its promise. Even the weather was sunny.

Can there be more?

Yes. There is.

This was the nicest conference I have ever been to (and I’ve been to a few in my business career).
“Nice” is an ambivalent word, often sneered at, used ironically or even sarcastically.
Collins Thesaurus says:
1. pleasant, delightful, agreeable, good, attractive, charming, pleasurable, enjoyable
2. kind, helpful, obliging, considerate
3. likable or likeable, friendly, engaging, charming, pleasant, agreeable, amiable, prepossessing
4. polite, cultured, refined, courteous, genteel, well-bred, well-mannered
5. fine, clear, fair, dry, bright, pleasant, sunny, clement, balmy

What a hard-working word! But a perfect fit for this conference.

Newcomers and habitués alike exuded friendliness and willingness to share; they signally failed to show any stand-offishness.  The much-published and complete tyros mixed and mingled and nobody’s opinion or contribution was valued less or more than any other person’s.

Everybody seemed to learn something, even those with 45 books behind them.

Oh, and the goody bag contained, amongst all the other riches, a small bar of Green & Black’s chocolate  🙂

Shall I go next year? Silly question. Who knows, I might even be on the way to being published…

6 comments to RNA Conference – where to start?

  • Glad you enjoyed it, Alison. The RNA really IS the friendliest organisation around.

  • It was a great conference, wasn’t it? And that’s a lovely shot of the river front. Can I nick it for my blog?

    Kicking myself now for choosing NOT to pack my camera at the last moment, but I already had sooooo much to carry and at the time it seemed the least important thing I could take. Now though …

    Hope to see you again next year then!


  • alison

    Yes, of course you can, but could you acknowledge it, pretty please, and mention my blog? 😉

    Let me know if you’d like me to email it to you as a .jpg

  • No need for jpg, I’ll just pull it off the screen. And of course I’ll acknowledge it, wouldn’t dream of not doing so!

    Dunno when I’ll get around to writing my blog entry. The inbox is a wee bit crazy right now. But you’ll get a link back, honest.


  • alison

    Thought you would, but I’ve had such a lot of photos pirated, especially when I was editing a local mag and its website, that I do a blanket request, even if they are nice RNA tweeps like you.

    I’m going to do a few posts about conference, at intervals and about different aspects. Best to take a little time over it and get it right…

  • Cara Cooper

    Hi Alison, nice blog! And I use that word as a compliment. Thank you so much for your company at breakfast that day, really enjoyed chatting with you and we miss you at the London chapters. I enjoyed the conference so much this year, I am resolved to go to Wales next year and hope I might see you there. Good luck with your writing.