I will be entirely honest: I tend to choose my RWA conference attendance by virtue of where the conference is taking place. San Francisco? Oh, yeah. Orlando? Not so much. No offense to Orlando, but here is the real deciding factor: what is there to see and do in the host city that is just outside the hotel door and doesn’t require a rental car. And in NYC, there is everything.
As evidenced from the view of hectic Times Square from my hotel room:
Amazing huh? And I love this HUGE billboard. This poor fellow was trapped out there all week. LOL.
Since my train trip from Seattle to NYC was cancelled and I had to fly, the only seats I could get on my airline got me into the conference a day earlier. Which meant: extra day for sightseeing. So off I went to Ground Zero:
The new Trade Center is going to be gorgeous. Here it is, over half way done. And the surrounding memorial and park like space will be amazing.
From there, I wandered over to Wall Street and the Stock Exchange:
Where you find this amazing juxtaposition of the old New York and the thriving modern NYC:
To go see Lady Liberty, you can take a tour boat to Liberty Island (hours in line and always overbooked), a Circle Line tour (three hours long) or a new way to get there: The Beast. Though you only get to see her from the water, she is an inspiring sight. And besides, isn’t that how so many people first saw her? From the railing of a boat as they were about to begin a new life. Though I doubt their boats looked like this:
Yes, I know there is something slightly at odds with going to see one of my country’s most enduring symbols of liberty via a hopped up tour boat that does 45 mph and harasses everything in its path. But then again, maybe that isn’t such an oxymoron after all. Especially when you end this bouncing, wind-whipped tour with rats in your hair and breathless sense of “Do it again! Do it again!” Actually, it was kick ass fun.
Truly, I love going to see both the Statue of Liberty and the view of NYC from the harbor–and have done it every time I’ve gone to New York. How can you not? It is breathtaking.
Even after the conference began, I ended up getting out to Central Park via the Avon party, which was held at the Boathouse. Isn’t this a lovely setting?
And my new tradition for any RWA conference (and a good deciding factor whether or not to go: Is there a great ball game close at hand?) And the answer was found at Yankee Stadium on a sunny afternoon that was well spent with a hot dog and some great pitching–although not exactly conference pitching to an editor or agent.
And the best part of going to RWA, all the free books! I’ve brought back tons to giveaway. And so here is the prize: a box of books from the RWA conference. Most of them are autographed–double bonus!
Two ways to enter for a chance to win:
1) Leave a comment below about what you’d sneak out of an NYC conference to go see. If you are reading this on Facebook, you can only enter at my actual blog. http://elizabethboyle.com/blog/?p=1235. Facebook does not allow contests via their site.
2) Tweet the following: @ElizBoyle has come back from #RWA11 with a great giveaway for readers. http://elizabethboyle.com/blog/?p=1235
I’ll give you all until midnight, PT, Saturday, July 9th to get your entry in.
Make sure to check back here Monday July 11th to find out if you won.