Monday, July 6, 2015

Conference Gems

I love attending writing conferences. I love the networking and the chance to see old friends and meet new ones (often folks I've associated with online but not met in person). The Storymaker conference was in May, and the Indie Author Hub conference was in June. Sometimes I take home only inspiration and energy.

Some years, I hit the jackpot for what I need at the moment!

At Storymaker:
  • An inspiring and uplifting keynote from Martine Leavitt - her  intensive where she taught us (Cliff Notes version) what her MFA students learn.
  • The Power of Deep Editing by Margie Lawson (I'd love to take one of her longer classes).
TAKE HOME: Emotional hits add power to your story and you do that by powering up the emotion. She compared emotional hits to drink sizes at your local Stop N Go. Save your Big Gulp for that important moment. No more than one or two in an entire book.
TAKE HOME: Begin your day with writing something creative, even if it's only a few minutes. It will get your creativity going and fuel you for the rest of your day.
At IAH (this was a much smaller and more intimate setting--it was fabulous!):
  • Great keynote and classes by Michaelbrent Collings. He has a great sense of humor and really got into a game.
TAKE HOME: "Being an author is one of the hardest and most frightening jobs in the world." - Michaelbrent Collings
 "If I was good at regular life, I wouldn't be a writer." - Michaelbrent Collings 
  • Christine Kiersey did a class on doing newsletters. I'm dreadful at them, so I found this very useful
TAKE HOME: Once you have enough books, use a permafree book as reward for signing up for your newsletter. Tell them about it in the front of your other books and then remind them about it at the end.
  • The Power of Four by J. Scott Savage. Oh, my heck! This was a class about pacing and just what I needed.
TAKE HOME: You can take your story and break it into four parts. He reviewed what should be included in each of those four parts. I came home and immediately implemented it in the ghost story I was editing. 
I gleaned a lot more at the conferences, but those are a few of the highlights. I feel so armed now and ready to battle on!

I've been critiquing and getting ready for family who will be moving in with us. What did you do for the weekend?


  1. sounds like you had great time there!

  2. Replies
    1. Her list of ways to use words was wonderful too!

  3. haha guess I'm not good an regular life either. Sounds like a great time.

  4. Sounds like you got a lot out of the entire conference. I'd love to go to it one of these days.

    1. Storymaker is a large conference now, and they have so many education tracts to choose from.

  5. I'd love to go to conferences. The few I've been able to attend have been educational and fun.

  6. Looks like quite the conference! I especially love the line "if I was good at regular life, I wouldn't be a writer"--made me laugh!

  7. Oh I love writing conferences. This sounds like fun. And you get to learn and meet people who share the same passion. Good on you.

  8. Awesome! Sounds like you had a good time:)

  9. I love the nuggets of advice and inspiration from conferences.

  10. thanks for the conference teasers! sounds like they were ultra productive, and just being around all those different writers is an encouragement in itself! now i'm going nuts wondering - what are those 4 elements???


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