From Adults to Teens and Everything In Between

From Adults to Teens and Everything In Between

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Getting The Most Out Of Writer's Conferences

Recently, I've had the pleasure of attending the ACFW National conference in Indianapolis, IN. This was the third conference I've attended, and I must admit my most successful. Thinking back I can attribute this to focusing on three major areas.

Number One: Preparation. Prior to attending the conference I did my research. I checked the website on a regular basis to keep informed about what editors and agents would be attending. I also took the time to visit their websites and find out what they were looking for. I made photo copies of all of this information to keep it readily available at the conference.

Number Two: Writing down your goals for the conference. A few days before the conference I set aside a few minutes to think about what I wanted to get out of the conference. Top on my list was to improve my writing skills, do a little networking with writers further ahead on the journey, and make new writing friends. I found that when I wrote my goals down, I not only achieved them, but it helped me to relax.

Number Three: Look for opportunities. Not just for yourself, but for others. In one conversation with an editor, I found out that he was looking for a specific magazine article. Earlier that day I had a conversation with a woman who had just such an article. I passed this information on to the writer, and made a new friend in the process. If you tend to be on the shy side, the best question you can ask at a table full of people you don's know is, "What do you write?" Soon you'll find yourself relaxing, and enjoying the experience.

Writer's conferences are a great way to meet people and improve your writing. I feel they are an absolute necessity to take your writing to the next level.


  1. I'm so glad your conference was a success!

  2. Colleen, thank you for sharing your experiences and suggestions with us! As I have not yet had the opportunity to go to a conference (but am looking forward to that day that I do!!) I especially appreciate your wisdom :)

  3. I'm going to my first writer's conference this week and am really nervous. Thank you for the advice!


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