Meet Me in St. Louie, Louie! (#WFcon15)

Kathleen Rice Adams header

Fellow filly Cheryl Pierson and I spent last weekend at the inaugural Western Fictioneers convention (also known as #WFcon15) in St. Louis. What a great time we had! We met some of the iconic authors in the western genre, learned more than my head can hold during seminars and panel discussions, got to sit around and gab with people we’d only spoken with online previously…and, of course, ate lots of good food. I may never eat again.

You can discover more about Western Fictioneers — a professional organization for authors of western fiction — and the convention here. If we can find Micki Milom, the superwoman who put the whole thing together single-handedly this year, we’re hoping to host another shindig next year, possibly in Fort Worth. Micki appears to have disappeared into the Convention Organizer Protection Program — a wise move on her part.

Instead of the usual post, this week I thought I’d share photos from the convention. Yes, I realize this is a bit like showing home movies to captive relatives, but I can be cruel that way.

Without further ado…

MickiAndJacquie

 

 

Take a good look at the woman on the left. You may never see her again after this convention. She’s Micki Milom, Nashville singer and songwriter, author of traditional westerns, and ramrod of the convention. Evidently, that smug expression on her face is meant to camouflage her nefarious attempt to strangle western historical romance author and all-around nuisance Jacquie Rogers.

 

 

 

Legends panel

The Living Legends panel discussion featured, from left, Robert J. Randisi, Robert (Dick) Vaughn, Dusty Richards, and Frank Roderus. Between them, the gentlemen have published thousands of stories. For such prolific, popular authors of traditional western fiction, all four men are down-to-earth, funny, charming characters (emphasis on “characters”).

 

RomancePanel_by DianeDuring the Romancing the West panel, authors (from left) Jacquie Rogers, Kathleen Rice Adams, Meg Mims, Kat Martin, and Cheryl Pierson astounded attendees with their… Well, I’m sure we astounded the audience with something, but the “something” probably was our ability to be extraordinarily silly. Couldn’t Micki have found western historical romance authors who possess at least a modicum of decorum?

Social Media panel_by Diane

 

The most evil thing about the Taming Social Media and Other Necessary Evils panel was the panelists: traditional western authors (from left) JES Hayes, that Kathleen Rice Adams person again, Jacquie Rogers (again), and Tom Rizzo.

 

PublisherPanelPublishers who specialize in western fiction also addressed the madding crowd. From left, Prairie Rose Publications editor-in-chief and co-founder Cheryl Pierson, Pen-L Publishing‘s Kimberly and Duke Pennell, High Hill Press‘s Louella Turner, Mike Bray of Wolfpack Publishing, and Golway Publishing’s Dusty Richards provided insight into what publishers look for when considering authors and their work.

 

KeithAndHunterKeith Souter, a medical doctor and popular traditional western author from the U.K., traveled all the way across the pond to present one of the most fascinating seminars during the convention — The Doctor’s Bag: Medicine and Surgery of Yesteryear. The presentation provided a hint of the enormous amount of material Keith covers in his newly released reference book of the same name. He was much too gentlemanly to refuse when I threatened him with a necktie party unless he autographed a copy for me. The book is a fabulous resource for anyone who writes historical fiction. I highly recommend it.

MichaelMilom

 

Intellectual property attorney Michael Milom presented one of the most popular sessions during the convention — The “Rights” Side of the Law: Legal Labyrinths. Despite his prowess as a high-powered entertainment lawyer, he quickly lost control of the rowdy herd and abandoned his planned talk in favor of answering a slew of questions from the audience. Michael, who is married to Micki, was gracious about our rude behavior, but as you can see by the metamorphosis in his expression, the lot of us probably should stay out of Nashville for a while.

 

 

There was plenty of time for fun, as well.

PRP Outlaw Gang_by JES Hayes

 

The Prairie Rose Publications gang whooped it up. (From left, Kathleen Rice Adams and Jacquie Rogers [Who are those women, and why did they keep butting in everywhere?], Keith Souter [who makes a wonderful bank robber, for a Scot], Cheryl Pierson [another outlaw who repeatedly butted in], Micki Milom, and Meg Mims.)

 

Cheryl signing book_by JES

 

 

 

Some of us, like Cheryl Pierson, autographed books. Did I autograph any books? Of course not. My ego may not survive.

 

 

MickiRandisiDuet

 

 

 

The entertainment was entertaining, especially when Micki Milom and Robert Randisi sang a couple of duets. We didn’t have to cover our ears or nothin’! (Micki’s a professional, but Bob was a surprise. He’s actually quite good.)

 

And there you have it — #WFcon2015 in a nutshell! (Most photos are mine, but thanks to JES Hayes for the image of the PRP outlaws and to Diane Rodes Garland for the image of Cheryl autographing a book.)

 

TheDoctorsBag

 

UPDATE: I’ve just received word that we kidnapped about a box-full of Dr. Keith’s The Doctor’s Bag — autographed! They’re available for $15 (including postage), which is a great deal considering the paperback version sells for $18.99 on Amazon. Cheryl Pierson has details.

 

 

A Cowboy's Touch Box 2

 

 

To thank everyone for schlepping through all this rambling, I’ll give two commenters a KINDLE COPY of a very special Prairie Rose release: A Cowboy’s Touch. The boxed set of four full-length western romance novels by Cheryl Pierson, Livia J. Washburn, Kit Prate, and me contains nearly 1,000 pages of spicy love in the Old West, and it’s a steal at 99 cents. To be eligible for the drawing, tell me which of the seminars you would have liked to attend. (All Petticoats and Pistols sweepstakes rules apply to this giveaway.)

 

 

Kathleen Rice Adams
A Texan to the bone, award-winning author Kathleen Rice Adams spends her days chasing news stories and her nights and weekends shooting it out with Wild West desperados. Leave the upstanding, law-abiding heroes to other folks. In Kathleen's tales, even the good guys wear black hats.

Her short story “The Second-Best Ranger in Texas” won the Peacemaker Award for Best Western Short Fiction. Her novel Prodigal Gun won the EPIC Award for Historical Romance and is the only western historical romance ever to final for a Peacemaker in a book-length category.

Visit her at the Hole in the Web Gang's hideout, KathleenRiceAdams.com. Or, connect with her on Facebook, Twitter, or Pinterest. Her Amazon author page is here.

38 Comments

  1. Sounds like a wonderful convention! Most of the seminars sound great, but I honestly think “The Doctor’s Bag” would be the most interesting.

    1. The Doctor’s Bag was fabulous. Keith is a genuinely fun, gracious man. He kept us all laughing the whole weekend with his sly Scottish “humour.”

  2. Sounds like a great convention and one that will grow through the coming years. Thank you for sharing.

    I would love to be entered into your giveaway. Thank you for the chance to win.

    Smiles & Blessings,
    Cindy W.

    1. Got you entered, Cindy! Thanks for stopping by.

  3. I would have liked to have attended “The Doctor’s Bag….”, sounds like that would have been a very interesting one.

    Thank you for an opportunity to read novels by several authors I have not had a chance to read yet.

    1. The Doctor’s Bag was filled to capacity, and for good reason: All of us admire Keith, and his lecture was a boon to historical accuracy. You would’ve loved it as much as we did!

      Got you entered in the drawing, Mary! Thanks for stopping by.

  4. The Doctor’s Bag. I’m very jealous of you all. Is any of this posted on YouTube? I’m going to check out Mr. Souter’s book.

    1. Dr. Souter’s book is marvelous. I can’t recommend it highly enough. The other night I cracked it open intending to thumb through it…and then promptly spent several hours engrossed by the material. 😀

      I’m not sure whether any videos have made it to YouTube yet, but I know Jacquie Rogers captured a video of Micki and Bob singing. I’ll try to find out where she put it.

  5. I think St. Louis is still trying to put itself back together after hosting the Western Fictioneers convention. (I know I am!) We had a fabulous time. Who knew there were so many lunatics in one organization?

    Yes, Kathleen, I am writing this from an undisclosed location. A hot stone massage is in my immediate future.

    Thanks to all the PRP folks for participating and helping me keep things rolling.

    1. That St. Louis survived still amazes me. “Lunatics” is too mild a term. 😀

      Enjoy your massage! You deserve it. 🙂

  6. What a fun-looking convention, Kathleen. I bet you all had a hoot! 🙂 I might have to try it out next year if you bring it to Texas. I’ll start breaking in those new boots now. 🙂

    1. Please do join us, Karen! You cannot imagine how much we crammed into two days. Sadly, I couldn’t attend all the seminars and presentations I wanted to attend, but I packed in as much as I could. The people were extraordinary, and the buffet and banquet were exceptional — no rubber chicken in sight!

      I’m pushing for Texas for next year. Cross your fingers!

  7. Kicking myself for missing all the fun. I’m thinking Galveston would be a great place for a convention, hotel with an ocean view…

    1. Ooh! I like that idea! Western authors could REALLY make a statement around here. 😀

      Consider yourself kicked from this direction, too. We missed you and James!

  8. Sounds like it was great fun. Thanks for sharing, Tex!

    1. You’re welcome! I’m sure you’ve heard just about enough of this by now. 😀

  9. The Doctor’s Bag does sound like it would have been a truly interesting seminar! Thanks for sharing!

    1. It was, Colleen! Everyone enjoyed it. Keith spiced some very helpful — and sometimes hair-raising — information in a humorous way. He’s a gem. 🙂

  10. Wish I could have been there and met you and everyone else there in person.

    1. You would have loved the convention, JD. You need to join The Gang that Couldn’t Write Straight next year!

  11. Romancing the west would be the one I would love to hear.

    1. I loved being a part of that panel, Kim. We had way too much fun misbehaving as only romance authors can. I think we shocked the audience when the moderator asked us about heat levels in our stories!

      Jacquie Rogers may have gotten the biggest laugh of the day during the discussion about writing sex scenes. When she showed her husband her very first sex scene, he was horrified: “But that’s the way we do it!” Jacquie’s response? “That’s the way everyone does it!” 😀

  12. We couldn’t have had a better organizer or a better time. I really did enjoy myself there and the best part was getting to meet so many people in person that for years, I’ve only e-mailed! The convention is open to everyone–you don’t have to be a Western Fictioneers member–and I heard a lot of comments about the price being so reasonable. We sure had a ton of fun!

    1. The price was unbelievably reasonable: Less than $150 per person, including banquet and buffet. That’s unheard-of!

  13. looks like a great conference. May have to pay attention for next year. Surprised Dusty didn’t tell me about it when I saw him at OCW. Thanks for sharing pics!

    1. Angela, Dusty may have laryngitis after all the talking he did at the convention! He told tales non-stop. He’s a character. 😀

      I hope you’ll join us next year.

  14. What a great idea, and the talent,so sorry to have missed it. Of course if you ever come to my neck of the woods, I’d be more than happy to help set one up. (Now having put my life on the line, I’ll proceed)

    Keith’s book is on my list, since I’m writing a paper and book about women doctors in Colorado prior to 1900. He’s been so gracious about answering any question I’ve asked him.

    To my mind, each and every person there has talent to be reckoned with. Here’s to continued success for each and every one of them. Doris

    1. Doris, I’ve just learned that Keith left a box of autographed copies of his book with Cheryl Pierson (fabkat_edit@yahoo.com). They’re available for $15, including postage. Get in touch with Cheryl!

      And don’t offer to help coordinate a convention for this rowdy crew if you value your life. 😉

      1. Ah but I’m used to ‘wrangling’ actors and delinquent teenagers, so…you may be right. (GRIN)

        I will contact Cheryl.

        Doris

  15. I wish I’d known about this earlier, but until the big reveal on FB on the 2nd, I wasn’t planning on writing a romance. Now that I’ve switched gears, I wish I’d know about this earlier. Andy yes I know I did a repeat there.

    1. Repeating means you really, REALLY wish you’d known about this earlier. 🙂

  16. What an awesome time you had, Kathleen. A terrific herd to get corraled with. I sure would have loved to be a fly on the wall at the convention…or a human there in person. Thanks for revealing the truth! xoxo

    1. Tanya, we’re going to kidnap you if that’s the only way we can get you to the next convention. You need to join us!

  17. Wow, what a convention! Thank you for sharing!

    1. The convention was tons of fun, Melanie. Thanks for stopping by! 🙂

  18. Conventions are fun and this one looks like it was no exception. So many interesting-sounding panels. And thanks for sharing the great pics!

    1. You’re welcome! It’s always good to put faces with names, especially in person. 🙂

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