Sunday, May 28, 2023

Celebrate The Joy of Anticipation

By Terry Whalin @terrywhalin

As you read this article, Im attending to one of the largest Christian writers conferences in the country--the Blue Ridge Mountains Christian Writers Conference in Asheville, North Carolina. Last year there were 600 people at this event which translates into a wide variety of types of writers and publishing professionals. Its been my privilege to attend this event numerous times through the years. Im teaching a continuing class and a single workshop plus meeting one-on-one with many people throughout the event. 

In this article, I want to capture some of the preparation steps and the joy Ive been feeling about this event. I wrote these words to give you a hint at the diverse activities and how they can be life-changing for you and your writing.  I encourage every writer to make plans to get to at least one or two of these events each year. At each one, you will make new connections and expand your worldview and resources for your writing life. Admittedly it takes effort and planning on your part to attend these events but the opportunities are priceless from them. 

For over ten years, Ive been working with hundreds of authors through Morgan James Publishing. Many of those authors I have never met face to face. A number of them (less than a dozen) are coming to this event. It will give me an opportunity to get to know them better and strengthen a bond which is already in place. Im excited to have such meetings. Several of them have already published their books with us and Im bringing my copies so they can sign them for me. Im a genuine fan of their work and I have joyful anticipation about these forthcoming meetings.

While to some the Christian publishing world seems large, it is actually a small community. I have not seen a number of people on the faculty for many years. For other faculty, Im familiar with their name but have never spoken with them. The opportunity to talk with these seasoned professionals face to face is precious. There are things which arent easily put in an email or a phone call that will be said. As you go to these events, I encourage you to do what Im doing. Be curious and be prepared to ask questions. Im praying for the opportunity to have those conversations--early, late or during the day. These things happens at these events.

Also a conference is an opportunity meet new people and form new friendships. One of the faculty is a childrens author coming from Australia. Ive already connected with her on LinkedIN. I noticed her book had no Amazon reviews. I purchased her book, read it and reviewed it. Since she is traveling internationally, she is limited on the number of books she can bring. Ill be bringing my book to get her autograph. Also Im anticipating a possible opportunity to work together. I have other Australian authors. Morgan James prints and distributes in Australia--or maybe my reason for meeting this author is to encourage her. 

During the conference, Im teaching four parts of a continuing session on the actions every author can take to make a difference in their publishing experience. Im taking some of my former teaching and reworking it around these themes and developing new material. This information comes from my working writer and editor perspective. Im praying and expecting it to be life-changing for the conferees.

Each faculty member and attender have a full life and we are stepping away from that life for a few days of different activities. Its not easy but we do it because of the immense value each of us find from these events. 

There are many of these writers conferences around the country. My encouragement is for you to get it on your schedule and then plan your interactions (to a degree). Select your classes and then let the Lord guide your steps. How do you anticipate going to a conference? Let me know in the comments below. 


Labels: , , , , , , , ,

0 Comment:

Post a Comment

That's the writing life...

Back to the home page...