Post by Jenny
“Flat” isn’t necessarily a bad quality. It makes for a fine tortilla. It’s a desirable attribute for bellies and a necessity for some musical notes in minor key signatures. But flat champagne? Eww. A flat housing market? Not so good. And flat creative energy? That really stinks.
I know because that’s how I’m feeling. Tired. Uninspired. A little burned out. I’m not all that excited about my writing projects—past, present, or future. When I do sit down to write, I’m finding it hard to keep my butt in the chair and my hand out of the chips. I have not yet been reduced to watching daytime infomercials, but I do occasionally consider pursuing a career as a deodorant-testing armpit sniffer or professional hypochondriac.
That’s why I’m looking forward to the upcoming NCW Writers Conference. As Hans and Franz from the old SNL used to say, I need someone to pump (insert clap here) me up. I need to absorb some writing mojo, to rub elbows with writers of all genres, interests, and abilities. I need to commiserate with people who have had their fair share of rejection and celebrate with others who are excited about their successes. For writers, there’s no better place to find all that than at a conference.
At previous conferences, I’ve gone in with an agenda. This usually involved pitching to an agent, semi-stalking a few other industry folks (authors, editors, publishers) I thought I should meet, and attending only those sessions that were most relevant to me.
But this year, I’m flying by the seat of my pants. I’m not pitching, I’m not stalking, and I’m giving myself free rein in session selection. Maybe I’ll sit in on “Playing with Cliché” or “Back Matter Matters.” And how could I not be intrigued by “Goddess of Fiction” or “Sh*t My Editor Says”? I don’t write for children, but I imagine “How to Avoid Making Childish Mistakes When Writing for Children” will have useful information for writers of all genres.
As for keynote speakers Diane Sieg and Dom Testa, I’ve read their conference bios, and I’m pretty sure the only way they’ll leave me uninspired is if I accidentally overdose myself with Benadryl beforehand. (If I avoid hay and fluffy housecats, that shouldn’t be an issue.)
The theme of this year’s conference is Passport to Writing. I’m looking forward to beginning the next leg of my writer’s journey there, and I hope you are, too.
What part of a writers conference pumps you up?