On Tuesday, I'll be leaving for the Romance Writers of America's annual conference. I try to attend every year, and since the event moves around the country, sometimes it's a long trip for me. This year it's very loooong, because the conference is in Anaheim, California, quite a stretch from central Pennsylvania. But it's well worth it, even if I arrive exhausted, because I'm looking forward to seeing lots of old friends, meeting with my agent and my editors, and participating in workshops where I always learn something new.
One of the highlights of the conference is always the Literacy Autographing, which will be held this year in the Anaheim Convention Center on Wednesday, July 25th, from 5:00 to 8:00 p.m. Every year this event gets better and better. Hundreds of authors will be there, and we hope thousands of fans. The publishers donate copies of the authors' books, the authors sign and sell them, and every cent that's made is given to promote the cause of adult literacy in this country.
I can't tell you how moving some of the stories are of people who've been helped by literacy volunteers across the country. As an organization of writers, we're especially aware of the tremendous need, and since the Literacy Event began, we've raised hundreds of thousands of dollars. Each year, the money is split between a national literacy organization and one or two local programs in the host city, so this year folks in Anaheim and the Orange County area will benefit.
If you happen to live in that area, or know someone who does, I hope you'll give us your support. If not, you might want to give some thought to the literacy volunteers in your own community. They make it possible for people to enjoy a pleasure many of us take for granted--the ability to escape into the world of books.