Birthday Bash

Victors, Villains & Vixens

Keynote Address: Reader’s Block

This year’s theme is about fun and includes a costume contest
emceed by our guest speaker, Damon Suede.

Damon’s talk focuses on the modern romance industry, the radical shifts in readership and fandom and how they’re altering what success looks like for professional authors. Genre fictioneers often grouse about writer’s block but more and more what we encounter is something more akin to reader’s block: an unwillingness to step beyond our ruts or move past the shadow of our steeples.

Romance is the literature of hope, simultaneously the most traditional and most provocative of genres. Our industry is evolving, but not necessarily in the obvious ways. Tribalism and division cost us marketshare and media access. In a world expanding and connecting at an exponential rate, where do books land? Who are the readers of tomorrow? What is the future of love stories and genre fiction careers? Join us for a free-range discussion of the art of heart and the business of happy endings.


Important Details

October 21, 2017

Embassy Suites – Brea
900 East Birch Street
Brea, California, 92821

Pay Online

(Registration open until October 18th)

OCC Member- $50
Non-OCC Member-$60
OCC Past President- $30

Birthday Bash w/Lunch Option
Email address for confirmation

NOTE: Please specify your choice of lunch selections in your Paypal purchase (see drop-down above). Your choices are:

  • Chicken Mediterranean Lunch
  • Vegetarian Lunch
  • Gluten-free Lunch

Additional Note: If you have already paid for the Birthday Bash and have not had opportunity to specify your lunch selection, please email your preference to, and include “Birthday Bash Lunch Selection” in the subject line of your email. Thanks!

Menu note: Chicken Mediterranean is sautéed chicken with roasted tomatoes, artichoke hearts, basil, garlic, shallots, and a touch of white wine cream sauce.


Schedule of Events

Friday Evening Write-Ins

7:00 pm: Damon Suede (host), 2nd Floor Meeting Room

8:00 pm – whenever: OCC Write-In, 2nd Floor Meeting Room

Saturday – All Day Bash

9:00 am – Doors Open

10:00 am – President’s Welcome

10:10 am – Cover Contest Walk

10:20 am – Book In a Year Presentation

10:45 am – Bestsellers Panel: What Made the Difference
(Debra Holland, Brenna Aubrey, Maggie Marr, Damon Suede)

11:30 am – Costume Contest Walk

12:00 pm – Lunch in the Atrium

1:15 pm – First Raffle Drawing

1:30 pm – Orange Rose Contest Awards

2:00 pm – Damon Suede, Keynote Speech
Overcoming Reader’s Block

3:00 pm – Book Buyer’s Best Awards

3:30 pm – Costume Contest Awards

3:40 pm – Cover Contest Awards

3:50 pm – 2nd Raffle Drawing

4:15 pm – Introducing the 2018 OCC/RWA Board Candidates

Saturday Night Pajama Parties

7:00 pm (Rooms TBA)

Brenna Aubrey – Think Like a Publisher!

Maggie Marr – Writing Sexy Scenes

Louella Nelson – Story Troubleshooting

8:30 pm (Room TBA)

Damon Suede – Character Lab

*** All PJ Parties will have snacks, laughter, learning and FUN. ***


Costume Contest

Come dressed as a Victor, Villian or Vixen from your favorite romantic story, be it book or movie.  Costumes will be judged by our guest speaker Damon Suede. Prizes and bragging rights will be awarded for: Best Villain, Best Victor, Best Vixen, Most Creative and Best Overall.


Book Cover Contest

Enter OCC’s Book Cover Contest- For just $20 you can have your cover made into an 11×17 inch desk-stand poster (yours to keep) that will be entered in OCC’s book cover contest that will take place during the Birthday Bash. Entries will be displayed prominently in the room during the Bash and all attendees will vote for their favorite covers in several categories. Final votes and awards will be announced at the meeting.

Send your hi-res pdf file or JPG that can print on an 11×17 stock no later than September 17, 2017 to: Jill(at)JillJaynes(dot)com.


  • One cover – $20
  • Two covers – $35
  • Three covers – $50

Note: all covers will be returned to you after the meeting.

Book Cover Entry
Enter your Book Title

Opportunity Drawing at the Bash

Win, win, win!

Some of the great prizes offered in our Opportunity Drawing include:

  • Kindle Fire
  • Free One-Night stay at Brea Embassy Suites
  • Publisher gift baskets of books
  • Chapter Critiques by award winning/best-selling authors and writing coaches
  • Many creative and beautiful gift baskets filled with treats to please the  body, soothe the mind and fire the imagination.

We need your Baskets! Donate a basket you’d like to win. Bring it with you to the Birthday Bash in October. Please let us know you are planning to bring one by emailing Jaimee Friedl at Treasurer(at)occrwa(dot)org.


Staying at Embassy Suites for the Bash

OCC’s reserved block of rooms has filled. To reserve your room at a comparable rate, call the hotel at (714) 990-6000 and let them know you are attending the OCC/RWA Birthday Bash. To make the most of the scheduled events, we recommend you reserve rooms with an October 20th check-in and October 22 check-out.

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