As I write this I am anticipating what this trip will bring. Gayle Irwin and I are in a motel, just 41 miles from our destination of YMCA of the Rockies near Estes Park, Colorado. We are attending a three day writing conference.
I have attended about five times before, but not for about six years now. It is by far the most economical yet information packed conference I have found. There are seven workshops going on at the same time twice each day and eight continuing sessions that meet each day. There are also four clinics that accept only 8-10 people that run the length of the conference.
Topics range from Indie Publishing, (not covered or encouraged 10 years ago), to memoirs, fiction writing, non-fiction, children’s writing etc. There are 15 minute free critique’s to sign up for and paid 30 minute ones. And you can mingle with teachers and fellow writers/hopefuls at meals in the cafeteria.
Opportunities to get to know authors and editors there happen at meals and at the worship times in the morning and evenings. Also, a hayride is planned for the last evening, weather permitting. (It doesn’t always permit at this time of year in the Rockies.) I met Lauraine Snelling on that hayride at one of my first conferences there. She was just beginning her career I believe and now is a bestselling author and quite revered in my home state of North Dakota where she did a series of stories on the Norwegian Immigrants to the Red River Valley.
While there is excitement and learning, how-to books available as well as books written for enjoyment, there are also the critiques! I must prepare to hear the changes they think my manuscripts need, that I didn’t “show” enough, that I didn’t develop my characters enough, that I need a ton more work! Hopefully, there will be positive comments saying I did some part right, I developed that part well, this is a story the person would want to read.
So, perhaps, if it doesn’t snow on us too hard, I will drive home Saturday evening with renewed vigor to finish my stories, begin new ones, and picture my success, signing my books right there alongside Nicholas Sparks, Johanna Lindsey and the rest!
And with that last sentence, perhaps my career in comedy has just begun! Or, God willing, it’s a prediction!