We're staying at the same hotel where the convention is being held. I don't think Calvin has any idea how many women will be there. But my editor is taking us to lunch, we're going to the Random House building for brunch with Loveswept's team where they will tell us plans for the future. My editor has asked Calvin to come along. On a different day we're both going back to RH for dinner and projected goals. The next day is a cocktail hour for two hours. The rest of the time, Cal will be on his own in a café, drinking coffee and reading his iPad, while I walk around gaping at all the big names in the romance writing world.
I've made the travel plans, written lists and suddenly an idea popped into my mind. Which we all know can be a dangerous thing. I've been writing a contemporary paranormal series, with bear shifters, for Random House Loveswept. The most beloved character in these books is Effie--a grandmother, a rascal, a survival of Woodstock, pink-haired and known to say most anything. Here's how she steps on stage on the first page of book one of the series--A HIGHLANDER'S OBSESSION:
Paisley Munro tried not to gawk at the two broad-shouldered men in kilts as she hefted her suitcase off the luggage carousel in the Inverness Airport, located northeast of the city referred to as the capitol of the Scottish Highlands. Her grandmother, on the other hand, was all eyes.
“Before we leave this country, I’m finding out what they wear under those kilts, even if I have to hike one up and take a gander myself.” Her grandmother patted her curls. She’d dyed her hair dark red for the trip. Unfortunately, the inability of her white hair to absorb the dye’s full effect resulted in a halo of pink curls. The combination of her tresses and her pink pantsuit made her look like the Pink Panther with wrinkles, just as skinny and wiry but without the tail.
“Behave yourself, Gram.” Paisley tugged her grandmother’s luggage off the slowly moving belt that squeaked with every couple inches gained. No use telling the free spirit to act her age. At seventy-four, why should she start now? “Our ride ought to be here somewhere.”
Paisley glanced around for Fiona Matheson, who should be holding a sign for Matheson Lodge. Fiona had promised in her reservation confirmation e-mail she’d meet them.
Gram elbowed her. “Good grief, they’re coming toward us. Look at those broad shoulders and hairy legs. I’m not drooling, am I?” She pulled her shoulders back and thrust out her chest. She lowered her chin to talk to her breasts. “Look perky, girls. Sexy hunks at two o’clock.”
My big idea? I could make a bit of an impression, especially when Loveswept does it's private event with paper books made from our ebooks. I'd be Effie!!! Granted, a heavier Effie, but I could imitate her attitude about life in a more bodacious way. A pink haired wig. I'd wear clothes with pink in them AND I'd wear pink pelican baffies (what we Americans call bedroom slippers). I'm making those myself. I ordered this pink wig online that came in almost a blinding fluorescent pink color. A friend suggested going to a beauty supply shop and getting pink dye. Me? Dye my hair pink? Attend the entire RWA event with pink hair? I mean, people will go home and ask themselves or their friends, "Who was that goofy writer with the pink hair? The one who wore feathered boas that molted all over the place."
So, what should I do? Wear the hot blinding pink wig in July? Or dye my hair and blend in with all the younger kids when I'm sixty-seven? When does a marketing ploy make us look simply ridiculous?