Thursday, June 16, 2011

Tomorrow I Leave for the Conference

I read 4,200 pages (ten books) over the course of two months. I studied my flash cards, rewrote my query, made business cards, practiced my pitch, and researched my agents. Now, finally, I'm going to the conference.

I keep telling myself, When you get there, don't say anything stupid.

Those of you who haven't followed this story from the beginning might wonder, "Why is this such a big deal? Why is this the only thing she's thought about for months and why does she keep blogging about it?"

I've wanted to be a writer since I was eight, but I didn't just want to write. I wanted the package deal. I wanted to interact with other authors, go to readings and signings, and be an influential member of the writing community. I want to be like Nathan Bransford: helpful, well-rounded, well-known, and well-liked. 

I didn't realize just how badly I wanted this until I went to a free conference in Oxford and met with some of my heroes (including Kevin Brockmeier and Tea Obreht). Like I said before, it was the most fun I've ever had.

People ask if conferences are worth the money. Um, hello? You get to meet authors and agents. Maybe I didn't make that clear enough: You get to meet authors and agents. A conference is an invitation to prematurely enter the magical world of The Published.

(It helps that I still think of authors as gods and not people. I wonder when I'll get over that?)

Am I making so much of this that I'm likely to be disappointed? Let me answer that with a question; did I mention I get to meet authors and agents?

I hope you take advantage of any social opportunities you can find. I've had more fun in the blogging world than I ever thought I would. I guarantee there are book signings close to where you live, as well as book clubs, critique groups, and events. There might even be a conference nearby. Don't miss opportunities: you never get those back. 

5 comments:

  1. Sounds like a blast! Have fun and my best to you, Teralyn.

    Now go "wow" them!

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  2. Yay, good luck! You are super prepared, I'm sure it'll be awesome. There really is nothing like interacting with authors, agents, and fellow writers!

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  3. I'm so proud of you. I really look forward to hearing about your experiences!

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  4. hey girl. you will do GREAT. don't stress. Agents are just like you and me, and I found my agent at a writer's conference! just be yourself, be passionate about your work, and most of all, just have FUN! the best thing about conferences is getting to meet new writer friends and beta readers and you will learn SO much. take notes! smile! and BREATHE! It's going to be great, and then you'll be hooked on writer's conferences for the rest of your life! (if you have a cocktail party, talk to the agents! it's the best time to get requests on your MS!)

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  5. Good luck, the 'authors as gods' is stuck in my belief system.

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