Why Should I Attend the Asheville Christian Writers’ Conference? Make the Most of Your 15-Minute Conference Appointments – Cindy Sproles 7 Things to Do NOW to be Ready When Writing Inspiration Strikes – Edie Melson You Need a Platform – Living A Story- Assignment 3 Redundancy: An Excessive, Oppressive, Pervasive Disease The One Sheet The Bio – The Fragrance of Who You Are Over-Edit? Imagery–When This is Like That Basic Writing and Editing Tips Blog or Website—Which One Does a Writer Really Need? – Edie Melson A Blog about Blogging My Blogging Affair – Terri Webster My GPS Writing Life: “Recalculating” – Elva Cobb Martin Is Your Blog Healthy? Conferences – Finding Direction Navigating Your Writing Success Why Your Writer’s Bio is Valuable Real Estate Rejection – Before You Blow Your Stack Evaluate Your Progress on the Writing Path – Edie Melson So You Were Asked to be a Beta Reader Writing the Perfect Bio Writers Call Out – Chicken Soup for the Soul 2014 Cleaning Guide for Writers (Critiques) Pray Uniquely Write Right – A Christian Writing Career Writers ADVANCE! Boot Camp 2015 Writers Call Out – Chicken Soup for the Soul The Conference is Over – Awe, Man! Chicken Soup for the Soul: Christmas in Canada 15 Minute Appointments – Cindy Sproles Break Out of Your Writer’s Cell – Denise Loock Writers Call Out Assignment 3 – Conflict in Every Scene? Writers Call Out – Chicken Soup for the Soul Assignment 2 – Gaining Word Count Assignment 1 – Picture Perfect Bio Writing as a Ministry Titles – Terrible or Terrific? How 5 Simple Tips Can Change Everything Rejection – Before You Blow Your Stack 10 Reasons NOT to Become a Novelist Commas – Bethany Kaczmarek Compounds Are Not that Complex – Bethany Kaczmarek Divorce My Words…Never! Get Your Grammar Fix (ed) – What Kind of Mood Are You In, Verb? Chicken Soup for the Soul: Living with Alzheimer’s & Other Forms of Dementia Find Your Blog’s Subscriber List and Schedule Email Notifications with Feedburner Writers Call Out – Chicken Soup for the Soul: Reboot Your Life And Objective Look at Subjectivity My Take on…Creating Villians – Part 2 Mike Dellosso My Take On . . . Villains, Part 1 – Mike Dellosso Chicken Soup for the Soul – Writers Call Out Touching the Spirit of Our Readers Writers Call Out – Chicken Soup for the Soul: Home Sweet Home First in Fiction – Characters – Aaron Gansky Critiques – No Pain, No Gain Making Time to Rest Writers Call Out The End – Saying Goodbye to a Story Writing’s Circle of Life Here a Tweak, There a Tweak, Everywhere a Tweak, Tweak What’s So Wrong with Waiting? Writers Call Out – Chicken Soup Books Emotion – Moving the Reader from Common to Uncommon Writers Call Out – Chicken Soup for the Soul Writing the Best You Can Bringing Security Blankets to Conferences—Tips for the Linus-Writers “Who Wants to Write a Story With Me?” CONTEST! – Mike Dellosso How to Get Amazon Reviews – Eddie Jones Freedom as a Holy Ghost Writer – Edie Melson My Worth Is NOT Determined by My Numbers – Edie Melson An Author’s Responsibilty – Cindy Sproles Call Out for Writers Connections: Social Media and Networking Techniques for Writers – Author Edie Melson Carolina Christian Writers Conference Chicken Soup Writing Opportunity The Tweet Life, Why Bother with Twitter? Angels, Miracles, and Heavenly Encounters – Writing Op How Writing an Article is Like Feeding a Baby – Edie Melson After the Conference…then what? Assignment 5 – Characteristics of a Lazy Writer Assignment 4 – TickyToes@urggggmail.com Assignment 3 – Pack a Punch When You Write Top Ten Authors Southern Writers Awards Boot Camp Free Subscriptions Assignment 2 – Vonda Skelton How to Make an Appointment Why I Should Make an Appointment Keep Your Image Current Top Five Blogspots Be an Encourager – Cindy Sproles Learning the Lingo – Part 4 – Appointment Etiquette with Agents/Editors Learning the Lingo – Part 3 – Publishing Terms Learn the Lingo – Critique Groups – Part 2 Learning the Lingo – Steps to Understand the Art of Writing and Publishing – Part 1 Preparing to Attend a Writers Conference Writing the Perfect Bio Don’t Forget! Writing Opportunity – Zookeepers Ministry Is SEO Dead? – Edie Melson What’s Holding You Back?

Preparing to Attend a Writers Conference

Photo courtesy microsoft.com free image gallery
It’s all in the preparation

By Cindy Sproles

Attending a writers conference is the single most amazing thing. Right before your eyes sit agents, published authors, publishers…and they’re all there to see you. Yes, to see YOU! So what do you do to prepare? How do you make the best of this opportunity?

Besides finding a pair of comfortable shoes, you can take a deep breath. Conferences are learning situations. So here are a few tips to prepare you.

Learn about the Faculty: Every conference offers its own variety of publishers, agents and author teachers. Look through your work, decide your genre and then study the faculty. Most conferences list their faculty. Many provide photos of these people on their websites so you can familiarize yourself. Pick and choose the faculty that best suits your writing then plan to meet with them one-on-one.

Purchase Business Cards: Business cards do not have to be fancy. You can print very nice cards from your home computer. VistaPrint.com runs awesome specials on smaller quantity orders. It’s important to have a card with your name, photo, email address, blog or website information, and the genre you write. You can give your cards to faculty members with all the necessary information they need. (Hint: As an editor, receiving a business card with a photo is a plus. It helps me remember the person and make a connection. It’s costs a tad more to add a photo, but well worth the cost.) Business cards are easy to carry for you and for agents and editors.

Prepare a One-Sheet: If you have a work in progress you want to pitch to an agent or editor, prepare a one-sheet. A one sheet includes a precise one or two paragraph synopsis of the story, add a short bio and your contact information. If an agent/editor is interested, the one-sheet travels easy, and again, has the vital information they’ll need once they’re back in their office. Print one-sheets on 24# paper. This is nice, a bit heavier and looks very professional. Remember it’s a ONE-sheet. That means ONE page…the front page. Not front and back. One-sheets give you great practice at writing that oh…so important conciseness editors love to see.

Choose Your Classes: Conferences will list their classes and workshops on the website. It’s important to be wise in your choice of classes so be truthful with yourself. Look at your writing level and choose classes in that range. Do the same with your writing genre – pick classes that will benefit your writing in that genre. If you’re new to writing, it behooves you to attend an orientation class. These classes will usually offer you information on conference jargon and important procedures i.e. how to handle your 15 minute appointments, what to give an editor/agent and what NOT to give them. Attend the keynotes, they’ll usually cover specific topics important to you as a writer both on personal and professional levels. Don’t take a class that will not benefit you just because you like the faculty member teaching. The great thing about conferences is the faculty is accessible. You can generally share a walk to a class or even a mealtime with these folks. You’ve paid good money to attend. Make the most of your money.

Dress the Part: You are meeting and working in a professional setting so most conferences recommend business casual dress. Leave the torn jeans and tees at home and respect your profession. NOW, here’s the exception to the rule: Weather and Conference preference. Check the websites for the appropriate attire. Most conferences are relaxed and the business casual is perfect and comfortable for you. For Writers ADVANCE! Boot Camp…we want you 100% comfortable and warm. It’s a winter conference in the mountains. So for us and The Cove, nice jeans and warm sweaters are very acceptable.

Plan to Purchase Conference DVD’s or CD’S: Again, money well spent. Those classes are with you when you get home. You can listen, listen, listen. Another plus: the classes you wanted to attend but couldn’t work in…are in your hands. Consider it an investment in your career.

Take these tips and study them. Start to prepare for your next conference. Make it the best “value” you can.

Christian Devotions Ministries - www.christiandevotions.us - A 501c3 non-profit organization.
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