I feel like I’ve read it all: how to behave at writing conferences, how to prepare the perfect sale’s pitch, what to say, what not to say.
Got my business cards with blog address on back. Getting my blog updated as I write. Have read the manuscripts of my writing intensive colleagues, submitted my twenty-page manuscript excerpt for review by a professional. Have the cash, checkbook, credit card to purchase books by visiting authors for signatures.
Am I ready?
I’d love to say yes, but the blotches on my face tell a different story. It’s like pimples popping out on a teenager’s face the morning of school photo day.
I am off to the Antioch Writers’ Workshop in Yellow Springs, Ohio, on Saturday, July 9. I have bought into the whole program: Saturday seminar all day, full morning sessions all week, afternoon fiction intensive all week, two professional critique sessions about my manuscript excerpt, open-to-the public writer forums and readings every evening. I hope to sign up to pitch my novel (said manuscript) Mermaid with an agent. All that and making connections and picking up tips from other attendees and facilitators.
Conferences were easier when I was a beginning writer with nary a story to my name, just aspirations. Now I am in the group that has that “lean and hungry look,” not to assassinate Caesar but to bring attention to my work. It’s great because I passed that critical dateline from wannabe-writer-but-I haven’t-written anything to a writer-with -a- completed-novel-looking-for-an-agent-and-a-contract. It’s scary because now there is evidence for someone to tell me how good, mediocre or poor I am.
Nevertheless, I am ready.
Wait. Not yet.
I need another container of make up to cover up these red blotches.