And That’s a Wrap On GRL 2014

GRL logo_0I made it home from GRL with little incident. Nearly six hours on airplanes after close to a week in a strange bed (without my special pillow) has my lower back all twisted up. I refilled my prescriptions today, though, so I should be fine in a day or two. My doggies were happy to have me back, once I sat down on the sofa I had a lap full of them. My boys are trying to act like they hardly noticed I was gone, but there are subtle signs of male confusion around the house. I let them have their fantasy.

GRL was a mixed bag for me, in the end. The event went well, but some peripheral things caused me some troubles. What’s a girl to do, though? None of it was worth getting my panties in a bunch over. So, at least it easy to stay in a good mood the entire time.

Arriving on Tuesday, instead of Wednesday, turned out to be a spectacular idea. I was able to get caught up on sleep so I could hit the ground running on Thursday, instead of starting out already fatigued from traveling. Mama Kris makes for a great roommate. This year, I actually got to spend some extended quality time talking to her, instead of a few minutes here and there. I figured out pretty quick that she was going to need some help staying on task, or she’d go too long without eating, and she wouldn’t get enough sleep. I think I ended up managing her pretty well. My only complaint is that she stole my hair mousse.

lucsas_noah_paw_2The biggest problem I had to deal with, haunted me the entire time. I shipped two boxes to myself at the hotel, to arrive on Wednesday, Thursday at the latest. The boxes contained some print books, temporary tattoos, postcards for autographing, and the full stock of dog tag sets for all my major pairings up through Strength of the Mate. I took the boxes to the post office – our main post office. The post office staff lost the boxes, inside the post office. They never even scanned them in as received. I called a few times, trying to talk to someone so they could locate the boxes and make sure I received them, but that didn’t work. Also, I had ordered additional print books, and those were mistakenly sent to Mama Kris, but arrived AFTER she’d left for GRL. This means I had no books, and no swag for any of my author events. Nothing. Nada.

recon_tattooI admit, I didn’t go to the post office today. I slept quite a lot, then needed to arrange for prescription refills, and honestly, I spent time with Dear Husband. He took the day off from work, and I hadn’t seen him in nearly a week, so we had lunch and ran some of his errands together. Sorry. I’ll get back on the trail of the boxes tomorrow.

I’ve often said that I’m an unusually tall redhead, with a rather loud voice, and that I can be intimidating. I tried very hard not to be intimidating at GRL, but Mama Kris and I both noticed several people being hesitant to speak to me. I like to think that everyone who did talk to me had a positive experience, so neither of us can quite figure out why others had to work up to it.  

TheStrengthofthePackMcKenna6Anyway, I really liked the way my author lounge went. Since I’m the author who owns Jared Rackler’s soul, I had him stand with me at my table. I did this for several reasons. One is, his covers for my books are so well liked, I was sure many readers would be thrilled to meet him in person. Second, he’s developed a deserved reputation for being a cutie, so readers were able to see that for themselves. Third, when readers approached my table, they would see me already in conversation with Jared, so they’d feel that I was open and approachable. Finally, I knew I’d have someone to chat with if there was a lull in the crowd. That last one was a non-issue. Not only was Jambrea at the table next to me, but there was no lull. My lovely readers and blogger/reviewers kept me busy the entire time. Still, many of you got to meet the talented and friendly (and cute) Jared.

I’d like to pause here to say, everyone who presented me with fanart during GRL, I hope I was sufficiently thankful and enthusiastic at the time. I believe I was, but sometimes, I had a lot going on. Even if I made my appreciation clear at the time, it doesn’t hurt to say it once again. So, I’m a fangirl down to the bone, so fanart is very dear to me. I understand the love, and the energy that goes into creating fanart, so it’s greatly appreciated. The items I received are beautiful, and I’m honored to have received them.

I participated in my first author reading, along with Jambrea Jo Jones and Cherie Nöel. We each read snippets from our stories in our anthology, Big Bone Lick. Not only were the readings entertaining, we had a great time together, and got to answer some fun questions.

beach_toteThe Featured Author signing was everything I expected. I’m impressed with the creative ideas everyone comes up with, for items to have autographed. Canvas totes, e-reader cases, fanart, and even autograph books are making a comeback! I got to meet people I’ve only ever communicated with via the internet. I also got to speak with people who had also stopped by the lounge event, earlier in the week. It’s always wonderful to put faces to names, and to get to hug some of the people who show such enthusiasm for my writing. I was also thrilled with the bloggers and reviewers who came by. I feel as though I have a good relationship with review sites, so it was nice to meet the people behind them.

I found a couple of things in the swag room that Mama Kris thought Casanova might appreciate. He DID get a big kick out of the penis keychain. He and DH didn’t seem to have any trouble while I was gone. DH b-b-q’d some meals in advance and Casanova packed his own lunches, so they did okay. Everyone knew he was going to be on his own for homework, so he muddled through. He also went to stay a couple of nights with his mother, and he DIDN’T call DH to either vent, or to come get him. That’s progress for both him and his mom. I think it bodes well. Let’s see if they can replicate it, though.

GRL wa1425613_557343387680026_1915560401_ns odd this year, with regard to my writing. I don’t tend to get any writing done while traveling. This year, however, I got quite a bit done. I was going to go to the Juke Joint, but when it started, I was making progress in an important scene for Strength of the Warrior. I figured everyone would forgive me, since I skipped the party to get some writing done. I made it to Casino night, though. I got into a dress that I couldn’t fit into last year, too! Afterward, Terrell was inside my head shouting at me, so I decided to get some words written. I was up until 3:30 a.m. completing an important scene. It was very productive.

I slept in on Saturday, and had no guilt about it at all. Mama Kris had to wrangle me, to get me to the signing on time, but we both feel it was justified, because writing books is the primary function of my profession! Without books, there is no GRL! I think the weird sleeping schedule, and the fatigue from three hours straight of signing autographs, caused a migraine the night of the costume party. Also, my new costume hadn’t arrived by the time I left for GRL, so I packed an old costume. I wasn’t really excited about wearing something I’ve worn several time before, so I gave in to the pain and just napped. I apologize to everyone who may have missed me at the costume party. I’ll order my costume earlier for next year, so I’ll have something to look forward to!

kendallAnyway, I got a phone call from the Bloomingdale post office today. My post office had tried to pass the buck to them. At first, we thought my swag/book boxes had actually reached Bloomingdale, but on closer investigation that wasn’t the case. The guy in Bloomingdale tried to help me get through to my own post office to sort this out, but no joy. In the end, he wrote up a summary of our conversation and kicked it back to my post office. Tomorrow, I’m going to print out the documentation and take myself on down there and make a scene until they sort it out. Again, if they can’t locate the two boxes they lost inside their own facility, they’ll have to pay the insurance claim so that I can pay to restock the books and dog tags. More to follow as it develops.

womens_plus_size_vneck_dark_tshirtOh, for those of you who have been asking about getting your hands on my merchandise, here’s the link. This is where you can get the tee-shirts you saw some readers (and me) wearing. It also occurs to me that some of the things there are good for autographs. The canvas bags, the e-reader cases, and mouse pads would work nicely.

I think that’s all for my GRL update.

I’m catching up on a week’s worth of television that is on my DVR. Regarding The Flash; I love that Barry’s father is played by the actor who was the original TV Flash back in the 80’s. Regarding Gracepoint; I love David Tennant, but I hate Anna Gunn. It’s making it weird to watch this show. Regarding Sleepy Hollow; FINALLY, there’s someone having slashy scenes with Ichabod. Forever; the only reason I’m watching this is to listen to Ioan Gruffudd talk, cause it’s pretty much a knock off of Highlander (WWII, late wife=Heather, Abe=Rachel, out living loved ones is painful, even the reference to the Solamanga). The Walking Dead; See? I KNEW the actor playing the Penguin was in Carol’s banishment ep! I was right!

Okay, back to writing. Terrell has something to say.

Kendall McKenna

Kendall mckenna love & dog tags Kendall McKenna is an author of M/M erotic romance novels. Kendall McKenna’s first work of fiction was written at the worldly age of nine, and was a transformative work that expanded on the story told in a popular song of the time. She tried her hand at vampire and cowboy fiction, winning high school poetry and short story contests along the way. It wasn’t until she discovered the world of m/m erotic fiction and found her stride with cops, Marines and muscle cars, that she felt inspired to share her stories with readers who enjoy the same things. Putting herself through college by working in a newly-created HIV testing clinic in her local Department of Health, introduced Kendall to the gay and lesbian community. Understanding and empathy has made her a lifetime advocate of GLBT issues. A brief bout of unemployment gave Kendall the time and focus she needed to finally produce a novel worth submitting for publication. Her first novel, Brothers In Arms, introduced the world to her authentic military stories and characters. Kendall was born and raised in Southern California, where she still lives and works. A non-conventional relationship has kept her happy for the last decade. Her four dogs enjoy it when she writes, as she sits still long enough for them to curl up around her.


  1. Yup, that’s about the only reason I’m watching Forever too! I think you and I are the only ones who have noticed the parallels to Highlander. Everyone else is just raving about it, at least everyone I know.

    Glad the trip went well. Hopefully you’ll find the boxes.

  2. I’m glad the house was still standing when you got home. Good luck with the boxes. GRL sounded like a blast from so many different people.

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