Today I head off to New Jersey, land of tomatoes, peaches, and Springsteen for the New Jersey Romance Writers’ Conference.

Conferences are great motivators; not only do you get to meet and talk with other women who do what you do and like what you like, but man, you’ve spent the registration fee, so darn it, you better do something besides sit on your butt and whine about not writing.

Which means, of course, that it is–let’s see–6:39am in the morning and I have to think of something to post here before I go.

[sudden switch of topic, I will bring it back around, just wait]

Another great thing about writing is that, contrary to what we whine about a lot, it is not a solitary endeavor; your comrades-in-arms (or keyboards) understand what you are going through and can commiserate. For example, I am heading to New Jersey with my friends KJ and EKM, who posts as the Lady Novelist.

A few days ago, EKM tagged me for a book meme. Which I now present here. Please comment and share your answers, too, so we can be a big community of obsessed book people!

Total number of books?

Oh, lord, I’m a reader, not a math person; I estimate about 2,000. My husband and I were both English majors, plus there’s the obsessive reader thing–maybe more, I dunno.

Last book read?

Traveling With The Dead by Barbara Hambly, a vampire story set in the 1920s. I am currently reading J.R. Ward‘s Lover Unbound. And next up in the queue is Deborah Simmon’s Tempting Kate, a Regency historical.

Last book bought?

Lover Unbound and The Devil’s Right Hand by Lilith Saintcrow (but honestly, I’m not ALL about vampires and demons, it just happened to be that way right now).

Five meaningful books?

Andrew Lang‘s The Colored Fairy Books: amazingly diverse tales that all usually have a happy ending.

C.S. Lewis‘s Narnia Chronicles: Kids surviving on their own, using their own innate good sense and morality, something I found myself doing when I was growing up.

Jane Austen‘s Pride and Prejudice: Romance, a seemingly irresolvable conflict, strong characters, plus that Mr. Darcy is soooo alpha-sexy. Le sigh.

Barbara Cartland‘s The Wicked Marquis: Ellipses and all, I read and re-read this book when I was nine or ten. And spent all my allowance money on more Cartlands. Eventually, I discovered the Heyers lurking in my parents’ library, but Dame Barbara was responsible for my introduction to romance.

Charlotte Bronte‘s Jane Eyre: First person, not a traditional heroine, a dark, tortured hero, melodrama, she turns down that prig St. John, thank goodness, and yet it’s got an HEA.

What about you? Share your obsession!