Last weekend I traveled to Dallas to participate in the tenth annual Buns and Roses Tea and I have to admit I was more fan-girl than author! The event benefited the Richardson Library’s Adult Literacy Center which seeks to transform lives by providing English as a second language instruction to adults who live or work within Richardson—a suburb of Dallas—and its school district.
Best-selling author, Lorraine Heath, is a member of the RALC committee, and I’m not ashamed to admit that I’m a HUGE fan of her books. It was such an honor and a privilege to be invited to join the twenty-five romance authors from around the country hosting tables at the event.
The weekend kicked off with a fun book signing at a local Barnes & Noble store. I’ll let you in on a little secret: book signings are scary. I’m always nervous that no one is going to show up, but with fifteen other authors there to keep me company, it was a party. AND readers showed up! Of course, they may have just stepped in off the street after hearing what a good time we were having. 🙂
Afterwards we headed back to the hotel bar for some libations and to relax before heading out to dinner at the beautiful home of one of the RALC committee members. There was a lot more laughter throughout the evening, not to mention some great food. Committee members, VIP readers, and authors mingled and chatted as everyone got to know each other. We talked about books, food, football, food, families, and, did I mention food?
The following afternoon, it was time for the big event. Over two hundred readers adorned hats (author Katharine Ashe’s table wore tiaras!) and headed to the ballroom for an afternoon of fun.
We sipped tea (author Diane Kelly’s table sipped moonshine!) with readers, signed books, and bartered on some very impressive auction items including a trip to Scotland and a gorgeous handmade quilt commemorating the event. Tessa Dare delivered a heartfelt keynote while emcee, Candace Havens, kept the audience laughing.
One of the highlights of each year’s tea is the keepsake bears that are outfitted in a unique costume. Guests hold up twenty dollar bills to secure one, but they go fast.
The folks on the committee are still tallying up this year’s contribution, but they estimate they raised more than $10,000 for literacy programs. Additionally, Barnes & Noble is making it easy for readers to contribute to the cause. Just use the code #11685054 (at checkout) while shopping online or in-store with from Oct. 1-14. To learn more about the RALC, go to http://www.ralc.org.
Be sure to make your plans now to attend next year’s Buns and Roses Tea! I know I am.