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Creation of California Dreamin’, a Conference for Writers

rubysdinerOne sunny afternoon in 2011, a group of romance writers from the four southern California chapters of RWA (San Diego RWA, Orange County Chapter RWA, Los Angeles Romance Authors, and East Valley Authors) met at Ruby’s Diner in San Juan Capistrano, California. During the meal, they started talking about the creation of a joint conference, something to bring the four chapters together and at the same time bring attention to the many gifted authors in the local community.

That very day, they formed a committee representing all four chapters. The committee immediately started planning the first California Dreamin’ Conference for Writers, which debuted at the Santa Ana DoubleTree Hotel in 2013. The event was a huge success, facilitating networking across chapters and throughout the writing community.

This intimate conference is now an international favorite and occurs every other year in Southern California. The committee is already busy at work planning the next conference. Watch this site and join our newsletter list for announcements and updates. We look forward to seeing you in 2019!


2013 conference

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Keynote speakers: Julia Quinn, Jill Shalvis, and Barbara Vey.

The pre-conference Friday session featured a book camp taught by Chris Marie Green, Judy Duarte, Lisa Kessler, Terry Irene Blain, Jill LimberTeresa Carpenter, Debra Mullins, and Linda Thomas-Sundstrom.

Invited editors and agents: May Chen (Avon), Christopher Keeslar (Boroughs), Heather Bennett (Decadent Publishing), Brenda Chin (Harlequin), Liz Pelletier (Entangled), Jennifer Miller (Samhain), Laura Bradford (Bradford Literary Agency), Pam van Hylckama Vlieg (Foreword Literary), and Courtney Miller-Callihan (Greenburger Associates).

There were 57 workshops presented by 38 instructors.

The conference included a multi-author public book signing with keynote speakers Julia Quinn, Jill Shalvis, and 69 more romance authors.

2013 Committee:


2015 conference

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Keynote speakers: Sylvia Day and Vicky Dreiling.

The pre-conference Friday session was Book in a Week with April Kihlstrom.

Invited editors and agents: Erika Tsang (Avon), Jill Limber (Boroughs), Sue Grimshaw (Random House), Brenda Chin (ImaJinn/Belle Books), Liz Pelletier (Entangled), Jennifer Miller (Samhain), Laura Bradford (Bradford Literary Agency), Courtney Miller-Callihan (Greenburger Associates) and Lucienne Diver (The Knight Agency).

There were 71 workshops presented by 51 instructors, and a self-publishing track was introduced.

The conference included a multi-author public book signing with keynote speakers Sylvia Day, Vicky Dreiling, and 76 more romance authors.

2015 Committee:


2017 conference

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Keynote speakers: Robyn Carr and Sarah MacLean.

The pre-conference Friday session was Debra Dixon.

Invited editors and agents: Laura Bradford (Bradford Literary Agency), Meghan Farrell (Tule), Carrie Feron (Avon), Charles Griemsman (Harlequin), Michelle Klayman (Boroughs), Patricia Nelson (Marsal Lyon Literary Agency), Shauna Summers (Penguin Random House), Nephele Tempest (The Knight Agency), and Jessica Watterson (Sandra Dijkstra Literary Agency).

There were 61 workshops presented by 57 instructors.

With guidance from Barbara Vey, the conference included California Readin’, an interactive reader event and book signing with keynotes Robyn Carr and Sarah MacLean and 57 more romance authors.

2017 Committee: