I went to my second writers conference last weekend.
I LOVE being with with so many people who are in the same boat as me. I joke around that writing conferences are like meat markets. . . you can walk up to anyone and know they are there for the exact same reason as you. No need for awkward, “so, what brings YOU to a place like this?” small talk.
Some highlights of my 2 days of writerly-talk fun are pitching to a lovely agent who didn’t laugh me out the door when I talked to her about my new story. And the two rounds of The Gong Show. I learned so much about what agents like and–more importantly–what completely turns them off. Yeah. Good to know.
I took loads of notes in my classes, but I’m going to include some below. . . so in case my notebook goes missing (it could happen!), I will have them saved in cyber heaven. Also, one or two of you out there might be interested too. Oh course. 🙂 Here are some of the points that really jumped out and grabbed me by the throat.
Make goals, write them down.
Where do I want to be in one year?
Treat writing as my job.
Start the story in the breath before everything changes.
Get characters out of their comfort zone.
Torture your mc.
What is the worst thing possible to do to my mc? Do that.
Keep characters in the moment…know their current desires, fears, etc.
Give characters a lack, a wound, a mystery to solve and an internal conflict.
Create a memorable BBT (“big bad troublemaker”)
There must be a goal and an antagonist in every scene.
Be genuine not melodramatic.
Keep moving forward.
You are your brand.
“Break every rule.” -James Rowland (Keynote speaker)
Wow. Just typing those out made me exhausted. Excuse me while I collapse.
7 thoughts on “Follow Your Dreams! (aka: I just got back from DFWCon)”
Great notes. You summed up the weekend succinctly. It was my first conference and I'm just humming with inspiration since the conference ended. I can't wait for next year!
Thanks. I didn't want to go too crazy with the recap, but I did want to remember a few things before I slept and then forget them all!
Must be the season for conferences; I think you're the third or fourth blogger who's posted about attending one recently. And I envy you all! Maybe someday I'll be able to afford it. 🙂
Some Dark Romantic
Hi Mina. I'd been writing for almost 10 years when I finally decided to be brave and go to a writers conference. I wish I would've gone years ago. It was so inspiring even just being around so many writers. I would highly recommend finding one within your budget. 🙂
Writers conferences are wonderful venues to make new friends and learn more about the publishing industry. Sounds like you had tons of fun where you went:)
Exactly! I wish I could go to one every weekend! But then when would I find time to actually write??