8 Things I Learned From Attending My First Writer’s Conference ~ Part 2

Welcome back to my eight tips I have for anyone attending writer’s conferences! I am by far not a pro on this topic, these are simply things I saw after going to my first writing conference last month. It was an amazing experience and I want to help you all have an equally amazing experience.

So, without further ado, my last four tips…

Be a Friend

In part one of this topic I talked a lot about making connections and how the people you meet at writing conferences can help you later down the road in your writing journey. However, I don’t want to hype that up in a way that you gain this mind frame of, “How can this person further my career”.

If you’ve already gone there, stop. Just stop.

Take several steps back and remind yourself why you want to go to a conference to begin with. Well, I’m sure there’s many reasons, but one should be to make friends. Yes, you want to make connections, but don’t forget to be a friend in the process.

Be kind to others, be respectful, and be confident in who you are and what you write. Don’t lose sight of your manners in the race for publication.

Don’t Miss an Opportunity

You know what I was saying last week about being rooted to the floor and not being able to walk up to that person you want to talk with? I talked about not letting fear control you. That all goes along with this point as well.

Don’t miss an opportunity.

You will regret it. Believe me.

You want to leave that conference with the feeling that you achieved everything, or nearly everything, you set out to accomplish. It’s a great feeling and a million times better than going home with regret.

Yes, agents and editors can be intimidating. Yes, you’re scared to walk up to them or schedule a pitch appointment. But will you regret it if you don’t do it?

Always remember that these people are only human, the same as you are, and that they want nothing more than to help you in your career. If they reject your work, don’t take it as a personal attack. Instead, ask them for feedback and what you might fix to make it better. That kind of information is so valuable and something a lot of writers crave.

Don’t miss these opportunities. You’re paying for the conference so take advantage of everything they offer.

Remember, Everyone Wants to See You Succeed

Something I was amazed by at this conference was how willing everyone was to give me advice and to help me through a problem. They want to see me succeed. It was a beautiful experience.

You might think, like I did, that most people are so focused on their own careers and paths that they don’t truly care about yours. But, while I’m sure there’s some people like that out there, that was not what I found when I went to this writer’s conference. And, chances are, that’s not what you’ll find either.

Your job is to let these people help you. Maybe you think you know what you’re doing or you’re on the right path, but that’s not to say these professionals can’t still help you. In fact, especially if you’re already on the right path, these authors and agents can help boost you even farther.

I know I learned a lot from the few conversations I had with authors and agents. And I know that, by those simple conversations, my writing journey just jumped ahead a few years. Questions that I’d had for a while now but didn’t know who to ask were suddenly answered and now I have a much clearer vision of what lies ahead.

You can too.

Have Fun!

This should be a given but I had to add it anyway. There can be a lot of nerves involved in going to a writer’s conference, whether it’s your first one or not. But you can’t let those nerves keep you from having fun!

Yes, there will be a lot of new experiences for you and, yes, those experiences are scary. But, at the end of the day, it’s all meant to be fun. Don’t look at it as a drudgery to walk up to an agent or it will become one. Look at it as a great opportunity just waiting for you around the next corner!

Through all those new experiences, remember to take time to simply hang out with friends. Especially as you make new friends, chat with them and share book recommendations or writing advice. Relax and enjoy yourself!

There’s no better place for a writer to have fun than at a writer’s conference.

Your turn!

Have you found these tips helpful? Does it make you want to sign up for a writer’s conference next year? What conference would you go to if you could?

Blessings, Allyson

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4 thoughts on “8 Things I Learned From Attending My First Writer’s Conference ~ Part 2

  1. That is a great point to remember that people do want to see you succeed! I don’t know why that thought surprises me so much. 😂 Great post, as always!!!

    Liked by 1 person

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