Thursday, April 29, 2010

Conferences Build Writing Relationships

By Nichole Giles

If you're a blog hopper--like me--you've probably noticed that lots of writers are talking about the most recent LDStorymakers conference. I've always maintained that the conferences put together by the Storymakers are the best available in the mid-west, and this year, with an attendance of more than 460 people, it appears that others have caught on as well.

The classes were phenomenal--and there were so many to choose from that making a choice gets harder every year. The presenters were fantastic--and entertaining as well. The hotel was roomy enough for all of us, and the food was even pretty good. (As much as food made in bulk can be good.) 

But those aren't my only reasons for attending anymore. The people. Other writers. My friends are there. So many of them.

I've discovered that when a bunch of writers get together in the same building, there's a special kind of energy that happens. It's rare for a writer--who is usually singular and fairly solitary in his or her craft--to feel that kind of kinship and commonality with so many other people at once. And not only that, the energy we create in that space follows us home and stays with us for months.

Have you ever heard the story of NaNoWriMo? It started out as a handful of friends who all wanted to write an entire novel in November. Without delving into all the details, I'll just say that this little project has exploded over the nation. And now, writers all over the country, and some in other countries, commit ourselves to writing entire 50,000 word novels in a month. It's a special kind of energy that spreads from one person to the other and doesn't stop.

For some people it's competition. For others, it's common ground. There are also those who just want to join in for the fun of it. But mostly, for me, it's about synergy. The loving support of my writing friends reminds me that I can do it, I should do it, and eventually, I will do it.

Look at us! Aren't we fantastic?


Krista said...

Fun picture! Thanks for sharing!

Carolyn V. said...

Storymakers was awesome, and look how cute you are! =) I love your picture.

elizabeth mueller said...

Darn it! I was in my room. *Sigh. Next time! Grrr

Nichole Giles said...

Thanks all! And Liz, don't worry. We'll take another one at the next big thing.

Keith Fisher said...

Yep. It is about the people.