Should You Attend Writers Conferences?

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By Brian Feinblum, Senior Vice President and Marketing Officer

 

I recently attended the Willamette Writers Conference where I spoke before 50 eager self-published authors, talking about how one can make his or her book marketable and how to promote books to the news media. The conference was in Oregon, a state I’d never been to, but I realized that after going some 5500 miles round trip the community of writers is not only alive and well, but it is one that replicates itself across the country.

It seems that writers conferences are very similar to one another, whether you go to one in Portland, Cape Cod, Miami or New York. Writers, regardless of what they write about, share a similar fate. As such, they have concerns, ideas, and experiences that tend to mirror each other.

The conference workshops cover all of the things that authors want to know about:

-How do I get published or land a literary agent?

-Should I self-publish, and if so, how?

-How do I increase book sales?

-How do I write a great book?

-How do I turn my novel into a movie?

-How do I promote and market better?

-How do I use social media to grow my brand?

 

I would encourage writers to attend a writers conference because they will:

-Not feel alone in what feels like a solo adventure as a writer

-Learn things that will help them in their career

-Realize they know more than they knew

-Get support: spiritually—and maybe even financially

-Open up to new ideas

 

That said, writers conferences can leave attendees feeling overwhelmed, as they are crushed by an avalanche of voices all at once. Suddenly you feel like you are behind where you should be, or you are hit with the realization that you’ve done things wrong.

But then a little distance or time passes, and you begin to reflect positively on what you accumulated and were exposed to. Slowly but surely you begin to filter through the lasting ideas and you start to follow through on a handful of initiatives.

Being a lover of books, words, and ideas, you will enjoy attending a writer’s conference. Even if you don’t learn something new (improbable), you will meet someone new. You will bond with your brethren and even if you don’t utter a word at the conference, you will feel at home being surrounded by those going through life like you.

 

 

Related: Getting Support For Your Book

 

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