Conference season is upon us! First time? Seasoned pro? This month I'll be covering the basics and hopefully some advanced tips and tricks to help you navigate this wondrous new world.
You may be thinking, "I'm an awesome writer. Psssh, why do I need a conference? I don't like people."
I may be thinking, "Unless you're guaranteed to make me lots of money, please play nice with others."
But also, conferences are just fun. I have several lined up and, from the agent side at least, love them. And I've heard from my fair share of writers how much conferences help them. It's a great place to meet other writers, network, find or form a critique group, perfect your pitch, learn valuable info, and yes, meet agents.
While I always hope to find a client at conferences, it's not the reason I'm there. Of the, say, dozen conferences I've been to, I've signed one client from the hundreds that have pitched me. I am always looking. But the main reason I go to conferences is to teach, to network as well with other agents, writers, and editors.
Conferences are, at the very essence of their existence, a place for writers to learn. Attend as many sessions, classes, lectures, pitch sessions, critiques, and workshops as you can. When the presenter asks for questions, ask them. If you're in a pitch session with an agent and have extra time, pick their brain.
You're there to learn. We're there to teach you.
But why should you attend a conference? Can't you get all that good learning online? Yes, probably. But there is something about a conference, a big gathering of like minded people in one place, at one time, that cannot be substituted. Try it. Just once. My bet is you'll love it.
Besides, we're all in the business of imagination. Get off the couch and create your own adventure. You might get some inspiration.
Please, as with all my topic months, leave questions here. I'll answer what I can during the month and leave all the rest for my FAQ at the end of the month.
Do you have a conference success story? Find an agent there? Your best writing buddy? That one final push to polish your ms? The inspiration to scrap your ms of 15 years and start anew?