I went to my first writer’s conference yesterday. I arrived with no clear expectations. I just wanted to listen, observe, and soak up the atmosphere.
Here are some observations and other tidbits:
First, if you haven’t attended a writer’s conference- add it to your bucket list. The Florida Book Festival sponsored the conference which featured regional writers giving a variety of talks.
Second, be bold and chose topics that are unfamiliar and interesting to you. Don’t go to your comfort zone. I made that mistake with the first session. I chose the more familiar topic on blogging. As I sat and listened, I realized I am well versed in “blog speak.”
Third, don’t sell yourself short. I had an uncomfortable feeling that I was the only unpublished writer at the conference, but as the day progressed as far as I could tell, no member of the audience had anything published, yet. I met writers who were churning out novels and short stories, shopping manuscripts, writing for magazines and online publications, and plenty of people who dream of writing something more than grocery lists and college dissertations.
Fourth, everyone preaches their own gospel. Every writer creates differently, and good writers- good presenters- assure you that there is no right way, or one clear formula for writing. Only compare you to you. Writing is an acquired skill. And the golden nugget of truth shared by each presenter:
Writing takes discipline, commitment, and time.
Whether you blog, write poetry, or working on a manuscript, you must make the time to write everyday.