L.A. Banks, Leslie Esdaile Banks, Leslie E. Banks,
Leslie Banks and Leslie Esdaile
I was fortunate enough to be able to attend the Romantic Times convention at Columbus, OH in April of 2010. If you are a serious reader, you understand that authors are our rock stars. So to be in a place surrounded by some of your greatest idols, being able to approach them, ask questions, chat…it’s perhaps one of the greatest treats for a fanatical reader.
Well, one of those days I had the pleasure of attending a panel called ‘It’s Fun To Be Bad.’ It was hosted by authors such as Dakota Cassidy, Amanda McIntyre and of course…Miss L.A. Banks herself. I knew of her, but had never read any of her work. When she was introduced, many cheers and screams followed. What I first noticed about Leslie was her smile. She always had a precious, bright smile on her face. She was extremely kind and graciously answering any questions from the audience. You could tell she LOVED answering and discussing her books with the fans. Not once did she loose that smile.
The panel was a fun one, to say the least. Here, we got to create our own ‘Bad Boys’ dressing up 2009 Mr. Romance winner Charles Paz into whatever kind of character we wanted. Needless to say, much fun and hilarity ensued! If you’ve ever heard Leslie talk…you know she has a unique voice that could be spotted in any crowd. Her laugh is just as contagious and delightful to hear. If she started laughing, you couldn’t help buy smile or laugh with her.
Afterwards, I wanted to approach her and ask for her autograph. She made such an impression on me, I figured I’d go up and say ‘Hi!’ In that distictive voice of hers, she said ‘Sure, honey! Who should I make this out to?’ Again, her smile took over her whole persona and she became the long lost friend you knew so well. After signing my autograph, she noticed the camera around my wrist and asked if I wanted a picture. HA! Of course, I did! I just didn’t have the courage to ask her and she ending up asking me! After finding a volunteer to take our picture, she wished me well and we said our goodbyes. That small encounter has stuck with me a whole year after the fact. That’s how easily Leslie Esdaile Banks leaves an impression on you. The next discussion was ready to begin in that room, but Leslie was still up on stage, signing autographs and taking pictures. She was not one to disappoint the fans.
So today it is with great sadness that I announce the world has lost a talented author, a loving mother and a caring soul. Of course, she may be gone, but not forgotten. She has left an impressive mark on the literary world from her novels and through the fans that absolutely adore her. And yes, even someone like me, who knew her for such a short period of time yet will remember her always.