Author Neil Gaiman recently provided the keynote for the Digital Minds Conference in an article in on Forbes.com the author distills 5 key lessons from the talk. While intended for an audience of book publishers, these points are ones authors, especially self published ones, should be aware of. You can read the whole article here. http://www.forbes.com/sites/suwcharmananderson/2013/04/22/5-key-lessons-for-authors-and-self-publishers-from-neil-gaiman/
This past weekend I took part in the 3rd Avondale Writers’ Conference. I had the privilege of attending as both speaker and attendee. The air had a definite buzz. It was great to see so many talented people, so passionate about their craft. The sessions were all well attended. For my session, I had some 25 attendees and an interesting discussion on effective use of point of view. I especially enjoyed Ann Goldfarb’s session on Recognizing and Developing Mood in Writing. I picked up some very good tips there. I want to give a big thank you to the conference organizers, (too many to name but check them out here), and everyone involved in making it such a great event. I already have it on my radar for next year.
I think the real benefit of a writers’ conference comes when you step outside of your head and really listen to the other writers and speakers. Too often we can crawl into a shell of what we think we need to know or do to further our writing. Some of us may read book after book on a being successful writer. Others may hop from conference to conference searching for that golden ticket to the best seller list. Still others hunker down and defy the world to ignore their fresh take. Anyone would tell you the best advice is the advice that works. The only thing in your control is listening to all the advice you can. I am not a big fan of the industry that has cropped up around producing writing success, that includes the books, magazines, pay to enter contests and, yes, conferences, yet I suspect at some point the developing writer will distill it all down to that special elixir that will work for him or her. So my advice, keep reading, keep learning, keep your ego in check and keep writing.
I wanted to share a write-up about the Avondale Writers’ Conference from Examiner.com. I will be giving a talk on using Point of View to enhance your writing. I am looking forward to attending some of the other workshops and mingling with the writers. I even snatched up a chunk of time with an agent to pitch my Steampunk novel. If you are interested in the conference make sure to visit their website Avondalewritersconference.org. The registration deadline has been extended to Nov. 2nd.
This weekend I had the pleasure of participating in the Second Annual Avondale Writers’ Conference. Though I have been writing for some 20 years this was my first time attending a writers’ conference. It also turned out to be my first time speaking at one also.
The Westside Wordsmiths filled in for an author who could not make it to the conference. The topic was, ‘Things I learned About Writing.’ We were able to give attendees a good summary of all that we learned this past year, as well as things to look out for going forward. Early feedback had it very well received and I hop we can do it again next year.
All in all it was a great way to spend a Saturday afternoon. There is a lot of local writing talent. I know I went home excited and inspired. Plus I even managed to sell a few copies of my books. I learned something, too. I am a pretty crappy sales person when it comes to my own writing. I still am not over the whole, ‘people will pay me money for this,’ phase of my career I guess. Someday maybe.