Saturday, June 14, 2014

Three Things That Can Contribute to Conference Success

I attended the Write-to-Publish Conference last week as many of your probably know from the many interviews I had on this blog. I came away with three things to remember that I think can contribute to a successful writers conference.


Although we spend many hours prior to a conference preparing our work to present to a prospective editor, or to be critiqued, one of the most important things to remember is to connect with that person sitting next to you in classes, at meals or in the hallway. It could be another conferee, an editor or agent. Relationships are not built in one day or at one conference, but they can begin there. They can then be built upon through emails, phone calls and attendance at future conferences.

Many of the people I saw at this conference I had met before. Spending a little more time together added to the relationship and we seemed to pick up where we left off and our friendship grew.

Publishing Takes Time

When we attend a conference, we may have expectations to get instant feedback on whether or not they are publishable for a certain market. We hope an editor tells us they love our article and they want to use it in their next issue.

The reality is, publishing takes time. Publishing house representatives who attend conferences do not work alone. They are responsible to their company. If interest is shown in someone’s work, it will still need to go to committees consisting of marketing and other editors. If accepted at that point, then there is the waiting game before something is published, which could take weeks, but more like months or longer.

Teachable Spirit

Whether you are a first-time conferee, a veteran of many conferences or an editor, we all have something to share that we have learned from our past experiences.

I attended classes taught by editors which were very informative. I also met many conferees attending their first conference. They taught me new perspectives and asked questions that I had not considered.

How about you? What has helped you when 
attending a conference? 


  1. I also attended the Write-to-Publish Conference one week ago. As a new attendee, I didn't really know what to expect. Even after preparing for several weeks, when I arrived, I immediately felt led in a different direction than for what I had prepared. I think for me, having an open mind and spirit was the key. Because I had allowed myself to be led in a different direction, I left the conference with a well rounded view of what my next steps would be when I returned home. I left with short, medium and long term goals. The connections with attendees and staff were crucial. Being nervous before I came, I realized, soon after I arrived, that all were there to help me succeed. It was a wonderful experience.

    1. Thanks, Sheryl, for commenting. So glad you were able to attend and had a great experience.

  2. Exactly, Tammie! And that's why I "hate" missing like I did this year. . . :-)

    1. We missed you this year, Millie. Thanks for stopping by.


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