Okay, so I'm not even going to try to sum up the entire conference in one post, that would take forever, but I will say, I'm so glad I went! Like with most conferences I've attended, I came home with a refreshed writer's tank, a newly inspired writer's brain, and a frankly disillusioned view of where we stand as aspiring authors. This delicious dose of reality was served up best by our keynote speaker, Larry Brooks, when he stated that we could easily fit all of the 'really famous' authors into a single booth at Dennys. (Perhaps he said a different restaurant but you get the drift.) This comment earned a round of laughter from the crowd because, well, it's hilarious, and if you can't laugh at these things you just might end up in tormented bouts of therapy instead.
Brooks also stated that if one intends to write a book, one should have knowledge of what it takes to write a good book. Riding in an airplane does not authorize us to actually fly an airplane. Eating a certain dish at a restaurant doesn't qualify us to then make the dish. And in turn, reading a novel, even enjoying many of them, doesn't necessarily mean we can write a good novel.
Brooks, a best-selling author himself, recently released Story Engineering: Mastering the 6 Core Competencies of Successful Storytelling. A review for this book can be found @ http://writeitsideways.com/story-engineering-by-larry-brooks-a-review/
Anyway, tons of great classes taught by authors Dan Wells, Clint Johnson, Lisa Mangum and Elana Johnson (who happens to be the reason I'm finally blogging!) to name a few.
Our panel of agents and editors gave feedback on first pages submitted in advance by attendees. This was one of my favorite parts of the conference. It was so interesting to hear literary agent Sara Megibow explain why she would not read any further on a particular page. Or to listen to agent Becca Stumpf describe what she liked about a certain read, and what she could have done without.
So, were you at the conference? What was the most memorable part for you? And if you weren't there, share a memorable experience from a prior conference. I'd love to hear it.