I think the way I met Delilah Marvelle is the most entertaining story of all - next to the story of how I met Gail Barrett.
The question is...how to tell the short version?
It was RWA 2010, Orlando. I had planned a release party for my CP, Elisabeth Naughton, and her fabulous 2nd book in the ETERNAL GUARDIAN series, ENTWINED. We decided to have the party in our room, but as the guest list mounted and the number of "yes" responses grew, we decided it would be more comfortable - not to mention more fun - if we asked some fellow authors to book an adjoining room and have a two-room party with us.
The hotel evidently had quite a bit of difficulty with the adjoining room request. It seemed the whole REAL names versus PSEUDONYMS discombobulated their staff. Add to that the fact that four authors were staying in the other room and neither Elisabeth nor I knew which one had booked it, or booked it under which name, and...well, you can imagine the confusion.
To make this long story a tad shorter, let me just say that I moved rooms 4 times. Yes, FOUR times. The other girls moved rooms TWICE. All so that we could end up in adjoining rooms.
Yes, Elisabeth -- you are loved.
Okay...this is the entertaining part...
I was standing in front of the door to my 4th and final hotel room door, waiting for the bellman to return with the key (see - I cut all that out - so don't ask why...), and suddenly realized I had no cash. No cash for a tip after my forth room move and a staff downstairs who I'm sure referred to me as "that writer bitch who's never happy" and the bellman having to run downstairs twice?
I was scrambling in the change pocket of my purse, sickened I was going to give him a fistful of coin as a tip, when he returned with the room key. At the very same moment, two women exited the room next to mine -- our adjoining room.
I felt compelled (after having them move rooms twice) to introduce myself and thank them for doing all they did. But they didn't know who I was! We'd never met. They were Elisabeth's friends. And the bellman was still standing there because I had my hands full of change, and I couldn't take the key.
Worse -- I couldn't bring myself to hand two fistfuls of change to the guy, gushing over an apology for all the nickles and dimes (no, I didn't resort to pennies) while these other women -- who, of course, I wanted to make a good impression on -- watched.
Seriously, I was mortified. Ridiculous? Probably. But I'd flown 7 hrs, ridden another in a bus to the hotel, moved rooms -- and all my luggage -- 4 freaking times. I'll admit, I was probably a little unreasonable at that point.
So, I made small talk with the girls, while the poor bellman waited. It was the most awkward situation ever. I felt like I'd gotten caught propositioning the guy to come into my room! With a freaking handful of change (to the tune of about $4 bucks).
One of those women in the hall was Delilah, and she was so incredibly gracious and smooth at the time, even though it was the most painfully awkward moment for everyone.
Later that night, after Elisabeth had arrived, we saw Delilah in the restaurant downstairs and ended up sitting with her for dinner. When I went to introduce myself with an intent to fess up to the whole stupid tip thing, I hadn't even gotten the words out when Delilah waved her hand in dismissal and said...I don't remember her words exactly...but something to the effect of, "Yeah, yeah. I saw you coming on to that bellboy. Few more minutes and you'd have been down on your knees."
I suppose you could take that a couple different ways. Maybe Delilah can shed light on her true meaning...although...based on her sexy books...maybe we'll just let that subject drop.
ROTFLMAO. *Sigh* One of my fondest memories. Seriously.
Delilah has since continued to show her sharp humor and generous nature. She is an absolute doll and I'm so grateful we met last year.
Up For Win Today:
The first in her SCANDAL series, PRELUDE TO SCANDAL
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Having been raised in the jungles of South Africa, assisting her father in the study of mammal copulation, Lady Justine Fedora Palmer sweeps back into London to embark upon her coming out. She quickly discovers animals are far more civilized than the men surrounding her.
When her father's observations are made public, proving buggery is natural to the animal kingdom, all of London is in a huffing outrage, including His Royal Majesty. Her father is imprisoned and slapped with outrageous penalty fees they simply cannot pay.
Lady Justine becomes more than willing to trade her good name and her place in London's gossip hungry society to secure her father's release. There is only one person she knows she can trust: her father's patron, the Duke of Bradford. A dashing libertine, yes, but one she passionately adores for his unwavering kindness, wit, humor, and a willingness to support her father's studies even as everyone else had laughed her father off.
To her astonishment, the Duke of Bradford is not the same man. His newly marred face hides a scandal that is about to test them both...
ONCE UPON A SCANDAL, book two in the SCANDAL series, OUT NOW!
THE PERFECT SCANDAL, book three in the SCANDAL series, February 2011
Tomorrow, Kristina McMorris, women's fiction debut author!