Conventions: Not Just for Dressing Up

Who here has ever gone to a convention of one kind or another? Don’t be shy, raise your hands high if you have. Now, how many of you have been to a convention where another writer or a publisher or an editor or an agent has been a guest, a panel participant or a known quantity?

And what did you do at that convention? Did you meet any of the aforementioned people?

I attended ConVersion (a local SciFi/Fantasy convention) not too long ago. My goal was to meet one of the publishers who I knew to be coming and maybe meet Terry Brooks. Let me begin by saying that I am not the most outgoing person alive.

Still, I went at the beginning of the con and immediately ran across the publisher in question. Over the course of the convention I managed to spend an hour or so of dedicated time speaking with her. It was awesome!

I also managed to chat with Terry Brooks, Tanya Huff and Robert J Sawyer. Yes, I was able to play the fanboy.

But those weren’t the only reasons I went. I wanted to meet people who are interested in writing. I wanted to make some connections that will help me to improve my craft. For this, I was very successful too. I met and chatted with Brian Hades who is the founder/publisher for Hades Publications. I met several published authors who gave me some great tips too. I also managed to arrange several interviews for upcoming episodes of “Get Published”.

As I have said numerous times before, networking is a key activity for a writer. I’m hoping that through my efforts at the convention I will have garnered some additional exposure with people who can help me further my writing career. I also hope to be on the other side of the panels at the next convention; it was obvious being a panelist is SO much better than being a member of the audience.

The only catch is I had to actually initiate conversations (not a strong point as mentioned before). That hurdle proved to be less of a problem than I had feared.

Personal Update

I am now deep into the rewrite of the fantasy novel to capture the changes mentioned by editor-extraordinaire, Gabrielle Harbowy. Oh yes, and I wait with bated breath to hear how I will fare in the Parsec Awards (to be announced on Saturday).

Wish me luck.


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