Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Conference Panel Comments

I've sat on a few panels over the past few years that talk about a variety of subjects, but they all are based in romance and books/ebooks.

From shifters to blogging as an author, bondage to genre definition, there are no guarantees how it will be received. Participants, both in the audience and those there prepared to talk about the subject, are all coming from their own places and experiences, and they are what make it work when they come together and enjoy the session.

Last year at AAD I remember sitting on a panel and listening to a reader share her personal life in regards to the subject [BDSM] with cameras rolling. If we go there as authors, that's one thing because we've set out limits, but for a reader to step up is a big deal and I worried about her and any potential backlash being on YouTube might present. I remember talking to her a couple times over the next few days about my concerns and she was okay, so I followed her lead.

Fast forward to this year, AAD Philadelphia, and another camera crew showed up for the BDSM panel. I took my moderator roll seriously and, with that reader in mind, forewarned everyone that they may show up on YouTube or elsewhere talking about tying up their lover. With everyone ready, we set off on a fabulous ride. The conversation was flowing and then I posed a question for the audience. For a second I wished I could take it back and then I saw her, Lady Dee, that fabulously calm and composed woman from last year was the first this year to pipe up and put a real face on the subject [a delicate one at that].

Loads of people are telling me it was a great panel, thank you, but I think it was a room full of great people there to share, learn and laugh while doing it.  If you have time, go check out this years BDSM in Romance panelists, they're fabulous!  They are James Buchanan, Eliza Gayle, Cat Grant, Mari Freeman, Bridgit Midway, Brynn Paulin, Melissa Schroeder and me, Tilly Greene.

Now, in case you're wondering what makes a panel fun, it takes the readers throwing in their opinions, comments and questions and panelists stepping away from the desk, deadlines and promotional pitches to make it fun and rewarding.

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