Tips for Aspiring Authors [#10] Attend Workshops/Conferences

Tip #10 Attend Workshops and Conferences

Where do children go to learn? To school.

At work, when you need to learn a new skill, you go where? To a class or workshop.

To become a subject matter expert, you do what?

  1. Have a lot of on-the-job training which qualifies you.
  2. Have higher education which qualifies you.
  3. Someone deems you an expert due to their perception of you and your skill set, which is also backed by what? Education and/or training.

Dallas-Fort Worth Writers' Conference 2011

Therefore, in order to grow to your full potential in the area of writing, I’m suggesting you attend workshops and conferences to educate yourself on your craft/passion.

You can’t learn it all on your own.

Attending helps you grow. If you have nothing else to learn, what’s the point? Learning is forever.

There’s a certain “vibe” that happens at writer-focused events. You get to meet all kinds of writers just like you—people who get excited about words. Ahh, words. Words are exciting. As writers, we make words come alive, right?

Who better to understand you than to surround yourself with other writers?

Maybe you don’t have many other writer friends who understand your hermitish ways while writing. Maybe no one “gets” you when you’re in your zone.

Other writers do.

We “get” you because we go through the same processes. No one knows how you feel when you’re in the drive-thru and someone walks across the parking lot making you think about a character and before you can eat, you have to pull over and voice-record what you saw, or pull your journal from beneath the driver’s seat to write it down. We get that.

Faith and Fiction Conference, Atlanta, GA 2010

I remember the first workshop I attended. I took my manuscript pages and asked the authors hosting the event how I could make my word count longer. They gave me some valuable advice that I still use today.

Some conferences can be quite expensive, and depending on your budget, may be out of your range. However, there are some good, very affordable conferences out there as well. Do a search for workshops in your genre and geographical area. Oftentimes there are events that take place over a few hours on a Saturday morning, as well as weekend conferences which may be within driving distance. Make it a point to try to attend at least one each year.

I make it a point to try to attend at least one or two conferences each year. Each one has a different set of writers, and I always leave with a nugget of information to make my writing better.

What are you waiting for? Pull up Google and see what’s out there with your name all over it.

Be blessed.




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