Tag Archives: Conferences

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Q&A Sunday: Writers Conferences

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It hasn’t been long since I talked about this, but it came up again. Vicki wants to know…

If you could go to any writers convention or conference (money’s not an issue) which conference or convention would you go to and why?

There are tons of conferences out there. Small, large, and in between. Some are geared toward writers. Some more toward meeting readers. Some can be overwhelming and others a little… underwhelming.

In a way, I think the question should be, what do I look for in a writer’s conference? That makes the question much easier to answer.

I have gone to one writer’s conference. The Romance Writers of America national conference. It occurs every July in a different area of the country. This year’s conference is in Orlando, Florida, and I can’t wait.

I like RWA Nationals because it’s a huge conference chock full of information. Some of the biggest names in romance attend every year. It’s a chance to network and make friends and learn a ton of information about writing, publishing, and marketing, to name a few. I love it, and will go every year as long as it’s possible.

Of course, the question was if money wasn’t an issue.

I’d go to RWA Nationals every year. If money and time weren’t a problem, I’d probably add in New Jersey’s Put Your Heart In A Book conference. I’ve heard very good things about that one as well, and it’s not too far from where I live.

There are tons more conferences out there. Tennessee, California, Washington, Florida (a cruise!), Texas, I could go on. I’d love to cruise with the Florida Romance Writers’ and their Fun In The Sun cruise. I’ve taken my computer on a cruise before, and it was an awesome environment to write.

At this point in my career, I enjoy learning. Some writers have moved on to where there isn’t as much for them to learn. They go to conferences that are more geared toward readers, like Romantic Times. Hopefully I will get there one day, but I’m a big believer that I can always learn something.

Thanks so much, Vicki, for your question! If you have a question, send me an email (mary (at) maryethompson (dot) com) with Q&A in the subject, or post it in the comments below, and I’ll answer your question right here on the blog!

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Me in Times Square

Q&A Sunday: Conferences

Tags : 

This question from Vicki seems well timed!

What is your favorite thing about going to a writers conference or convention?

There are tons of conferences out there. In a month, the RT Booklovers Convention is in Atlanta. There have already been some conferences, and many more are coming. If you’re looking for a way to connect with romance authors, you probably don’t have far to go. It depends on what you’re looking for though. Some conventions are tiny with only 50 or so authors. Others are massive.

For me, there’s only one conference I go to. That might change eventually, but right now, my kids are little and I want to have time with my family. So I choose the one conference that I feel gives me the most as an author.

That’s Romance Writers of America National Conference.

Every July, RWA holds a national conference for members and non-members. Workshops are presented on everything from how to write a book to marketing to earning six figures. It’s a huge conference packed with tons of information, awards for excellent books, and a chance to network with other authors.

It’s intense, I won’t lie.

It’s also amazing.

This summer will be my third RWA conference. Each year, what I’m looking for changes, but the whole reason for going is the same.

To learn.

It’s five days away from my family. It’s not cheap. It’s not relaxing. But I leave wishing I could take another week away from home to focus on putting all the things I learned into action.

Me in Times Square

Me in Times Square at my first conference!

Of course, I want to see my family too!

But the question is what is my favorite thing about conferences or conventions. It’s hard to choose one thing. I’d have to say there’s a couple things I love.

One is all the things I learn. To come away with a portion of the wealth of knowledge at the RWA conference is huge.

A second thing I getting a chance to see friends who don’t live close. My roommate, and good friend, is from California. We see each other once a year. Being able to grab a glass of wine and some dinner together is always so great.

The third thing I love about it is the energy. Maybe it sounds silly, but being surrounded by so many other authors and people who love romance is invigorating and simply inspiring. When do you get a chance to hang out with 2000 other people who do the same thing as you, who respect you, who encourage you, and who want to help you? It’s absolutely amazing.

This year’s conference is the end of July in Orlando. My family chose to add on a trip to Disney with the conference so this year’s conference is even more exciting for me! But, as you see, I love it no matter what!

Thanks so much, Vicki, for your question! If you have a question, send me an email (mary (at) maryethompson (dot) com) with Q&A in the subject, or post it in the comments below, and I’ll answer your question right here on the blog!