Well, here it is, my friends! I will be leaving tomorrow to go to my writer's conference, and will return on Sunday.
I've been to the conference twice before; it's fascinating to watch how people interact here, and I enjoy splitting my time equally between perusing books in the corner, and chatting with an acquaintance or two I've met in the hall.
Conferences are usually attended by many hopeful writers with manuscripts in hand, published writers of articles or books, and the faculty comprised of agents, editors, publishers, and well-published authors. The conference is set up with classes throughout the three days, and lots of time for interaction. Each attendee also has the opportunity to meet individually for 15 minutes with different faculty members. The agents and editors are always in high demand, of course.
I find it amusing to watch how people respond to these agents and editors, as if they are rock stars or something. Seriously. I heard a story last time (could be apocryphal but I'd buy it) of an eager attendee pushing manuscript pages to an agent under the bathroom stall. Whenever an agent enters the lunch room, five tables (well, the people at the tables) immediately call out, "Sit here! Sit here!"
The faculty are hunted animals. They cluster together in protected zones.
The first time I went to the conference, I was sweaty-palmed and breathless to make a good impression with my manuscript, like everyone else. We all would whisper to each other, "I blew my appointment with so-and-so," and the others would whisper back reassurances. The second year I didn't have an agenda, and was surprised at how much more enjoyable the experience was. I chatted up my appointments, asking the faculty about themselves and only peripherally promoting a manuscript, and I think maybe they appreciated the break.
This time is a new experience again: I will be talking about my book for a panel, and will be able to sell it at the consignment table. I am even sponsoring a contest to take place on this blog: details to be posted for you when I get back, my dear friends, so you may also enter if you would care to.
I will be attending a continuing course called NANGIE: Advanced Novel Writing. This course is taught by Nancy Rue and Angela Hunt (hence the acronym). The first NANGIE course I took was fabulous, and I'm definitely looking forward to this one also.
OK, that's enough for now. Too many "I's" in the previous paragraphs. Report upon return.
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