I LOVE the last answer “Write purdy”
Friday morning, the bagels were cold and the fruit was warm but we had all come together with one purpose in mind, Writing.
I wasn’t sure where to go, or what to do. Walking into the breakfast arena, or area but I personally like arena better, I realized that I was a tad over dressed. Not really over dressed, but enough that I felt I stood out. Which isn’t always a bad thing. The main thing is that everyone was very friendly, and I loved all my new clothes I had bought just for this weekend so as long I liked the way I looked and was comfortable I was good to go.
Finding a table to eat at was very similar to your first day at High School. You’re an insecure Freshman all over again. But I just randomly chose a table where it wasn’t too full and it looked like the ladies where already having a discussion. And I totally lucked out, I was sitting with two other attendees and the owner of a small publishing company. Here is where conference etiquette (also known as common sense) comes to play.
What I DID NOT DO was start into a million question about, oh what do you publish, you’d love my novel, it’s about blah, blah, blah. It’s bagels and small talk people, not a pitch session.
What I DID DO was join in the conversation they were already having. I told a few funny stories, and got to know her as a Person, not a Publisher. She is also a writer herself, so it was fun to talk about how dreadful it is when your characters don’t listen to you.
That is when I met the ever interesting Aurelia Sands of Deer Hawk Publications.
The main point of this post is
1- You have to put yourself out there. I would even suggest going solo and not with a friend so you Have to speak to others more often and not cling to the one person you know.
2-Publishers are people. Obvious but it still needs to be said. While they are there to find great writers (duh) if you don’t respect their boundaries they will talk about you behind your back. (It happens)
3-If you make a friend or even an acquaintance then you will feel more comfortable walking up and speaking to them during the sessions and the rest of the conference. Believe me, they will ask “So what do you write?'” or “What’s your book about?” They WANT to know, they WANT to find you so there is no need to cram your masterpiece down their throats.
Bottom Line: Manners are free people, go get you some.
Okay, so I finally made it to my hotel late last night and after a quick trip to the bar to settle my nerves I got a good nights sleep. I cannot tell everyone how excited I am to be attending an actual conference after the past few years of attempts to go and having things fall through.
I have already hung out with a lovely publisher at breakfast, and attending my first class. I think I’ve succeeded in the Business Causal outfit, and I have all my business cards ready to hand out at the first request. I am currently between sessions and just wanted to give a quick update.
Everyone here has be super nice and welcoming. I will say that it is mostly “mature” people but I’m not judging. I’ll talk to anyone who will listen. I have realized the toughest part is choosing which session you will attend and which ones you’ll have to skip. Ugh! I want to go to them all.
I’ll post more tonight with actual helpful info. But here’s my outfit to tide you over till then.
Alrighty loyal friends and strangers, I am preparing for my first ever writer’s conference. I will be attending the South Carolina Writer’s Workshop Conference in sunny Myrtle Beach in just 10 short days. To say that I am a nervous hot mess is an understatement. In this post I am going to share with you what I have already done to prepare as well as what I still have yet to do. it’s a lengthy list so bare with me. I will be making several posts over the next 10 days about this topic so stay tuned.
Here is my original to do list, and I think it’s pretty universal despite which conference you plan on attending.
TO DO BEFORE CONFERENCE
Craft Log line
Order business cards
Have Query Critiqued
Edit Novel (again)
Check clothing etiquette
Practice hair and make up (buy what you need)
Buy thank you cards to send to the agents, ect that were extra helpful. Fill out that day, to mail when I get home.
So some of these may seem a bit girlie but you have to understand that I haven’t worn make up or gone to anything resembling professional in over a year. A girl gets out of practice, ya feel me? Any who, I had my query letter and synopsis critiqued by an agent at a Writer’s Digest Bootcamp last week (I’ll post those later today) and already ordered my business cards from Vista Print (awesome coupon codes BTW) as well as picked up some super cute thank you cards from TJ MAXX. So I am well on my way to getting through my list. Hell, I even did my make up twice this week, that’s right, you heard me, I looked like a girl for two whole days. Try and hold your applause till the end of the show.
That being said there is still quite a bit I need to get through to make this a successful endeavor for myself, but I think I’m chugging along at a reasonable pace. Today is the gym and working on my log line (what you may have heard called an elevator pitch). It’s not easy and I’m kind of dreading it. So, happy neighbors and random stalkers, wish me luck and feel free to comment with any other conference prep ideas you may have.