Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Did Ya Miss Me?

Photograph by Kevin Dooley
I've been out of town at a conference. The Writing for Life Conference, to be exact. Hosted by the San Diego Christian Writers Guild.

I hadn't planned on attending and then decided at the very last minute to go. Literally, the last minute. I had to call them to ask if I could still submit a pre-aproval form they require before meeting with the faculty.  They let me...so I was very pleased.

The conference was in Rancho Bernardo which is just a hop, skip, and a jump from where I live, but I still opted for the hotel room because of the multiple days involved.  The Radisson offered a deal to attendees and I gotta say...the hotel rocked! Best red velvet cake EVER!

Friday night featured a "Round Table" with dessert. Who can pass that up? It turned out to be more of a panel Q and A.  I got so much out of that session, let me tell you! The first panel was editors and agents. They answered questions pre-submitted and asked on the spot. They were funny and encouraging while giving non-sugar coated answers.  Thank You!

The second panel consisted of published professionals. Non-fiction, fiction, newspaper, screen play, and magazine. Some great discussions went on about budgeting time. Realistic economic goals for the writer, and the dawn of the e-book and what it might mean to the mid-list and debut author.  Very informative and, again, encouraging.

The next day was filled with workshops and general sessions. Barbara-Nicolosi Harrington, if you haven't heard her speak before, is a powerhouse of wry humor and thought-provoking commentary on the industry as a whole.

The workshops were a-plenty. I opted for the "Crafting A Page-Turer" two-part series given by author Susan Meissner. She illustrated character layering, tension, and plot twists in such a fun and applicable manner, that I felt like running out of the classroom and finding the nearest computer. I was that inspired...thanks Susan!

The workshop on Lyrical Writing and Paradox in the Plot was illuminating and made me take a second look at some areas in my writing that could use some work. 

General session was quite interesting as we got to interview the collaborator of Sarah Palin's Biography; Going Rogue and her agent. Quite a ride doing biographies, especially with the dynamic and the powerful.  Some of her other works included a biography of the creator of the Delta Force and the book Same Kind of Different As Me.

To top things off, I reconnected with an old critique group that I'd lost contact with after a move. They are still going strong and I'm excited to start attending once again.

If you haven't been to a conference in the past few years, I encourage you to go. For the growth, friendship, and encouragement...if not to get away from it all and have a silent hotel room in which to write.

Until next time...Go Write!


Linda Glaz said...

Sounds like you had a blast.

Anonymous said...

I'm glad you had a good time and made some contacts!

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Good thing you decided to go!

Ann Best said...

Sounds like it was very informative, and fun. I'm glad you got to attend!