This week I am slightly obsessed by What. To. Pack. For. Orlando. Orlando, as most of you reading this will know, is where the Romance Writers of America is holding its annual conference. NEXT WEEK.

Each year I tell myself I’m not going to buy anything for the conference, just make do with my old conference clothes (worn only once or twice), but inevitably I wander into Macys (virtually or for real) and devour the sales racks. I found some pretty blouses I couldn’t resist and some great light-weight sweaters from Land’s End for chilly conference rooms. I’m all set.

And I might as well announce here that I will be signing copies of the September book, Chivalrous Captain, Rebel Lady at the Literacy Booksigning! Get your signed copy early and do something good for Literacy.

Chivalrous Captain, Rebel Lady is Book 2 of my Three Soldiers Series. I’m working on Book 3, Gabriel’s story as we speak. I hope to bring it to an end before leaving for the conference next Monday.

In Gabriel’s story, my heroine, Emmaline must travel around England with Gabe, so she had to pack a bag, too, right? just like I will be doing…I had to imagine what she would take with her.

Emmaline is not of the aristocracy, so her clothing would be more functional than elaborate. It is summer, so a nice shawl should be enough for cool nights (she wouldn’t need any clothes for the “hot” nights!).

She’d have one bag she could carry herself- a portmanteau. My imagination has her carrying a portmanteau made of sturdy cloth, like the carpet bags of the Post Civil War South, but I couldn’t find any Regency era images, so she might have carried a leather valise similar to this. (This is a handmade reproduction. You can actually purchase one like it at River Ridge Leather)

What would she pack? Here’s my guess:
1 Pretty dress, suitable for impressing Gabriel.
1 Traveling dress in a fabric that can be brushed off to clean it.
1-2 other dresses in lightweight fabric.
1 pair Half boots for travel
1 pair of slippers for other
2 pairs of gloves, one for traveling, one for “good”
2 bonnets, one for travel, one for “good”
2 shifts/chemises, one to wear, one to launder
2 corsets? Or maybe she would only have one. It might take up too much room in the portmanteau.
Hairbrush, comb, hairpins
Tooth brush and tooth powder
Bar of soap
Small bottle of scent -lavender, I think.
Clothes brush

Okay, what am I missing? What else might she need?

Tonight here I’ll announce the winner of Mary Blayney’s Courtesan’s Kiss. Tomorrow at Diane’s Blog, I’ll announce my winner of my two week Blog Contest for a signed copy of Gallant Officer, Forbidden Lady (still time to enter – just leave a comment)

And next Monday I’ll be on the road to Orlando!