Sunday, October 31, 2010

Writer's Conference - Last Preparations

This will be my last post before the writer's conference this coming Saturday.  (At midnight tonight, I enter the world of NaNoWriMo.) 

I'm just about ready for the conference.  Here's a preview of what I expect.

Early-o-clock on Saturday - wake up and drive down to Charlotte - try to get there a little early to find a good parking spot, etc.

Dress = business casual, so I'll wear nice shirt, pants, black shoes, and no tie.  I will probably take a small bag to carry materials I may collect.  I'm still debating whether to have some first chapters ready to hand out.

8AM: Registration begins.  They also have breakfast and "Brilliant at Breakfast Panel Discussion: The Past, Present, and Future of Writing in North Carolina".  It's an open discussion during breakfast.  It'll be fun to listen to.

9AM: Session I Workshop: "Promoting Yourself" with Linda Rohrbough.  I hear that this is a really good presentation.  If for some reason this session is over capacity, my second choice is: "Creating Archetypal Characters Instead of Stereotypes in Mystery and Suspense Fiction" with Suzanne Adair.

10:30 AM: Break - this is my chance to talk with people, exchange business cards, check out the booths, etc.

11:00 AM: Session II Workshop.  Since I have a Manuscript Mart appointment, I can't stay for a whole workshop.  I'll either go to "Panel Discussion: Critique Groups" with Michael Shinn and Chaytor Chandler, sit near the back and leave at 11:25.  Or I'll stay with the booths and network with anyone else not attending a workshop.  Or I may go hide somewhere and practice my verbal pitch.

11:30 AM: Manuscript Mart with Daniel Lazar.  This is my big moment with one-on-one time with a real agent.  I'll pitch my completed novel, "Escape From the Planet Justice," and we'll see how it goes.  Best case scenario, he may take on my book.  Next best case - he'll refer me to someone else in Writers House.  Worst case - he'll give me some good advice on how to fix my pitch so I can better find an agent or publisher the next time.

11:50 AM: The Manuscript Mart ends.  I can either go back into the Session II Workshop.  Or I can do more networking.  Or I can go hide for thirty minutes and think about what Daniel said to me.

12:30 PM: Luncheon.  We'll eat while we listen to Georgann Eubanks talk about her book "Literary Trails of the North Carolina Piedmont."  We'll hear about NC authors and all that stuff.

1:30 PM: Town Hall Meeting.  The Director Ed Southern will answers open questions.

2:00 PM: Literary Walking Tour with Georgann Eubanks.  We'll walk around Charlotte and learn some of its literary history.

3:00 PM: Session III Workshop: "From Writer to Entrepreneur: How Building a Theme-Based Web Site Can Take You There" with Ashley Thomas Memory.  Here I'll learn how to spice up my web pages.  (Will this blog get a makeover?)

4:30 PM: Break - more networking and visiting booths.

5:00 PM: Faculty Readings - I'm not sure what happens here.  I've never been to a reading before.  I'll probably have to choose who to listen to.  There may be a good chance to talk to the reader after the reading (networking).

6:00 PM: Happy Hour - I really don't know what happens here.  I don't drink, but I'll probably carry a diet-coke glass with me.  Supposedly holding a drink helps you network better.  I'll play this one by ear.

7:00 PM: Network Banquet with reading by Cathy Smith Bowers.  She's the NC Poet Laureate.  I'm guessing she'll read us some poetry.

9:00 PM: Open Mike - I've never been to one of these.  If there's an opening, I may get up there and tell my IRC story.  Or I may listen and soak it all in.

10:00 PM: It's over.  I'll drive home.  Get back at late-o-clock.  Then crash after church the next day.

Sounds like a fun, full day!  If any of you are going - I hope to see you there.


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