Please understand that this is the last of my work-daily posts. Beginning next week, please look for fresh posts each Wednesday. Thanks for checking out my blog! – Liesa
THE PEN AWARD
After literally years of working on a project, it might seem like a small token of acknowledgement, this Pen Award. I mean, who can’t go out to an office supply store and buy enough pens to keep you writing for months to come? Who even uses a pen to do serious writing any more anyway? How come they don’t hand out a Laptop Award? Really! Now that would be a prize.
For those who think like this, I’m sorry for you. Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers takes time out each year to officially congratulate those who have had both emotional and financial recognition for their work in the form of a contract and or launch of their first published book.
The Award is, to me, the pinnacle of recognition for work an author, her writing group, her agent and or editor, and the publishing world have pulled together in an effort to inform, educate, entertain or persuade their community to a higher level of existence. No one author can be a success on his or her own, and while that author might humbly receive the official recognition, they are only being honest when they say, “I couldn’t have achieved this without you.”
I mean, could you really see Eli Manning lead the New York Giants to a Superbowl victory without his linemen?
THE BIG NIGHT
Okay, so how did it feel to receive a Pen Award as recognition for having my first book published? FANTASTIC! What, you can’t hear me shouting even now? It’s like having seven birthday parties at one time, or the most delicious ice cream sundae without having to worry about the calories after.
Funny thing is, the evening I was going to receive this (no, you can’t surprise an author with the award–she knows when she’s had her first book accepted for publication), I went to my hotel room for a quick nap and woke late for the event. Truly! A headache had crept up on me during the day, so I took a couple of aspirin and slept through the alarm I’d set. It was only a by a few minutes, but still left me hopping.
Threw on my special little black and gray dress, did up the make-up and hair, then flew down to the dinner just in time. Then, as I sat down to eat, a friend walked up behind me to let me know–I forgot to button the top buttons on my dress. Goodness! I can be such an air-head at times. Theresa fumbled with the tiny things, and put me in presentable shape, so all’s well that ends well.
I wish there was some adventure I could tell you about receiving the award, but unlike a novel, my trip to the stage was uneventful. No one pushed out their foot to trip me, I didn’t have toilet paper stuck to the bottom of my shoe, no one shouted out the words I dreaded: “She’s a fake!” Just a nice hug with the head of PAL (Published Author Liaison), Bonnie Ramthun, and a photo. I didn’t have to give a speech or receive one of the simile contest trophies of faerie wings or anything.
NEW AUTHOR PANEL
Sunday morning, I joined two other new authors, Linda Hull and Susan Spann and headed up to a presentation platform to talk about our work. I can see why these two authors are going to be great successes. They were poised, funny, poignant, and everything you expect an author to be. Me? I had fun with the microphone. I hope those there found it entertaining.
One of the questions was about a Hollywood personality and a television show I’d only heard of, but not heard about. Talk about feeling out-of-touch! Must be something in the air where I grew up. We Bloomfield folks seem to not be all there sometimes.
Still, after Linda and Susan helped with specifics, I understood that one might not want to be on something called “Jersey Shores,” so I piggybacked on their answers and talked about how great it feels to be appreciated by any potential reader at this point in my life.
I’m glancing over at the award now, and smiling. One of the more experienced published authors said to me that of all the awards she’s received, The Pen Award remains her most precious. I can see why.
Now I’m thrown back to that day in second grade when Ms. Halsey wrote on the chalk board “the pen is mightier than the sword.” Thank you Ms. Halsey. It truly is.