There are several good reasons why writers should invest the time and effort required to attend writers’ conferences.
Attending a writers’ conference only takes a few hours, or a couple days at the most, a small investment, and a little effort to register and arrange travel and lodging, but the payoff can be big.
Attending a writers’ conference gives you a great chance to pitch your book, learn about the major publishing houses, meet book editors, agents and book marketing specialists. If your book is six months or a year from being finished, you can meet people who will give you valuable ideas on shaping your book and provide other advice to help you wrap up your project when you return home.
Or maybe you have been working on your book for a few months and are feeling insecure or unsure whether you really can be a published author. Attending a conference is a good way to get a reality check from book editors to get a professional opinion on your plot and characters and to determine whether you are on the right track.
Most importantly, attending a writers’ conference provides you with an opportunity to learn about the publishing business from fellow authors. You will also get honest and helpful professional assessments from book editors that will be more than worth the cost and effort of attending the conference.
Of course, you will want to prepare for any writers’ conference you attend by having a plan of what you want to find out and what you will do while there. You will want to develop an ‘elevator pitch’ of your book that you can deliver in 30 seconds. Have a one pager available with your book cover, author headshot, short 50 word synopsis, short bio, website URL, Twitter handle and your contact information. You never know who’ll you’ll meet so be prepared for that moment.
Now that you are ready, here are some writers’ conferences that you should consider attending:
Willamette Writers Conference
Aug 7-9, 2015
Fifth House Lodge: The Remembered Self: A Weekend Workshop
Aug 15 - 16, 2015
San Francisco Writing for Change Conference
Sep 12, 2015
Kentucky Women’s Writers Conference
Sep 11-12, 2015
American Christian Fiction Writers Conference
Sept. 17-20, 2015
Florida Heritage Book Festival & Writers Conference
Sep 24-26, 2015
Southern California Writers’ Conference
Sep 25-27, 2015
Chicago Writers Conference
Sep 25-27, 2015
St. Augustine Writers Conference
Oct 1-6, 2015
Write on the Sound Writers’ Conference and Pre-Conference
Oct. 2-4, 2015
Breathe Christian Writers Conference
Oct 9-10, 2015
New York Writers Workshop: Pitch Conference & Workshops
Oct 16-18, 2015 Nov 13-15, 2015
Castle Rock Writers Conference
Nov 6-7, 2015
Select a writers’ conference of interest to you and be prepared to enjoy the benefits of meeting other writers, acquiring knowledge you can use immediately, learn about different genres, find a new market for your book, elevate your professional effectiveness, meet editors, agents and publishers, become inspired and return home energized.
The Bottom Line: Make a commitment to attend at least one writers’ conference in 2015. You’ll be glad you did!
Book publicist Scott Lorenz is President of Westwind Communications Book Marketing, a public relations and marketing firm that has a special knack for working with authors to help them get all the publicity they deserve and more. Lorenz works with bestselling authors and self-published authors promoting all types of books, whether it's their first book or their 15th book. He's handled publicity for books by CEOs, CIA Officers, Navy SEALS, Homemakers, Fitness Gurus, Doctors, Lawyers and Adventurers. His clients have been featured by Good Morning America, FOX & Friends, CNN, ABC News, New York Times, Nightline, TIME, PBS, LA Times, USA Today, Washington Post, Woman's World, & Howard Stern to name a few.