Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Writing It Real Conference NASHVILLE

Wide awake now, I have recovered from the 12 hour drive from my home to Nashville where I attended the Writing it Real Conference held at the Scarritt Bennett Conference Center, a metaphor that demonstrates beauty on the outside, corruption on the inside...best explain: beautiful collection of Gothic buildings, majestic, medieval, almost went looking for Mr. Chips flapping by in his black robes. Interior rooms were cell-like...no problem there, for none of us were in them very long. One of us suffered and attack of the ants and needed to change her room at night without any help from staff. Bad move, staff. We'll herald that near and far. To ask a woman to move by herself from downstairs to upstairs...no elevator here...is beyond the pale.

Food was dreadful the first day because a substitute chef had the task and he was pathetic. Regular chef returned from vacay and things improved a bit. The promised forever present coffee wasn't. Once the containers were empty, so were we. Keep the coffee coming seems to not be a Scarritt Bennett thing. So we trekked to Starbucks for coffee and Panera for breakfast on our last day. Some of us stayed over and of course we knew the kitchen was nada. Luckily the walk to said coffee and breakfast was good for us. Enough. Let me get to the good stuff.

The WIR (Writing It Real) Conference was spectacular, not just because of the leadership of Sheila Bender and her faithful cohorts Meg Files and Jack Heffron....a trio that works seamlessly together to present the very best tools a writer needs for developing his or her craft....but because of the particicpants. This, my fourth conference, came with a mix of fine writers all, gifted sharers of their talent, constructive attitudes and the gentlest of critiquers. Their writing was spectacular and there was nary a boring moment either by teachers or writers. I learned so very much this time. Lectures were thorough and informative. The sticky place is still about the nightmare of publishing and what the choices are. The message, though, is really about the mess that is publishing, and has been for a few years now. It is that you, the writer, will be doing virtually all the work and the publisher, if it isn't you, will take a piece of your action. A big piece. So, ergo, do it all yourself.

I can't say enough about the wonderful leadership. To anyone who writes and reads this blog, plan to treat yourself to three days of magic with this trio of instructors. I don't know what I'll be doing this time next year and probably neither do you. But I'm making my plans, regardless. Conferences I have attended with WIR were in Madison, Wisconsin, Port Townsend, Washington, Oracle, Arizona, and Nashville, Tennessee. We do get around. Where would you like to attend next year? It's still an open question.

Each conference I have attended with WIR has made me a better writer. But this one, because of the serendipitous mix, will remain memorable.

5 comments:

  1. Ottawa, Canada is my vote for nxt time.

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    1. Sounds like a plan. But two of us are leaning toward Chicago, Chicago, that toddlin' town....

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  2. Barbie,
    Thanks for the accolades. We three enjoyed teaching and being with this warm and wonderful group of writers. Writers write under all circumstances --and one of them is irritation--so perhaps the lodging and coffee issues helped in some way.

    Publishing - yes, there's a lot to take in. But you learn as you go. Here's a link to a general discussion about book publishing from Writers Digest: http://www.writersdigest.com/writing-articles/by-writing-goal/business-legal-matters/publishing-101-what-you-need-to-know

    And here's one about magazine publishing: http://www.thereviewreview.net/publishing-tips/what-editors-want-must-read-writers-submitti

    Type "small press publications" and "literary magazine publishing" into your browser and you'll find venues that are listings of where to send work.

    I can't say "ergo you should self publish." It may be practical or it may be too much work. There are many factors. Finding small presses to publish your book may be a very good option.

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    1. I just finished two parts of a free teleconference. The next session is about this very thing: self publishing. Reading the blurb alone about the author who will speak in an hour for an hour was daunting. Think I'll buy the book instead.

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  3. A phone call is a phone bring in which somebody converses with a few individuals in the meantime. The telephone calls might be intended to permit the called gathering to take an interest amid the call, or the ring might be set so that the called party simply listens into the call and can't talk. It is here and there called ATC (sound video chat).
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