Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Pretending to be All There

Ok, so I've been such a major slacker lately at blogging. A year ago, I felt like my life was not too busy and I had plenty of time for everything. A year ago I attended my first writers conference. It was the first annual "Book Academy" at Utah Valley University. It's being held tomorrow and I couldn't be more excited to go. Ok, maybe I could be, but I haven't had enough caffeine yet this morning to be fully awake....where's that Dr. Pepper.

Anyway, the Book Academy was my first conference and it will be interesting to see its growth over the next few years. At least, I hope it grows. I want to be able to say that I've attended it every year. As of right now, I have. And I plan on saying the same thing tomorrow night.

I'm a big fan of writers conferences. It's actually the only place I feel normal. I met the awesome Julie Daines at a writers conference. We were actually in the same boot camp group at LDS Storymakers in April. And even though I haven't talked to her once since, she's still someone I consider a writing friend. (Only a friend would come up to you and punch you on the arm and say "You missed (me winning 1st place in that one category in that one contest)." (Something that made Julie cool was her obsession with skulls and

The point is, that anytime authors are grouped together, as long as you're an author, you can feel comfortable. Believe me, I do. I didn't at first, but I've met people that I feel comfortable going and sitting with at any time during a writing-related gathering.

And yeah, a lot of people attending these things are wannabes. Shoot, if I want to see the biggest wannabe at tomorrow's conference, I just need to borrow someone's compact and look in the little mirror. Yeah, I'm a wannabe, but I'm more than that. I'm there to network, to socialize, and, most importantly, to learn.

So, if you're a wannabe like me, go to a writers conference. Learn. Absorb. Grow. That's the point. And meet awesome people, that's a side benefit.

If there were ever advice to give to a beginning writer, this is mine: find a local writers conference and enjoy.

Alien abductions are involuntary, but probings are scheduled.


Julie Daines said...

Thanks T.J.! That was a great conference. And we are totally friends! Good post. Sometimes I've dragged my feet about attending a conference, but then I'm always glad I went. I learn something useful and I meet great people. Or even better, I meet an agent or writer who can help guide me through the writing business. Plus, I love hangin' out with the wannabes! ie: people like myself.

Julie Wright said...

I sometimes feel like I live from conference to conference. Being with people who "get" me makes such a difference