"The notion that such persons are gay of heart and carefree is curiously untrue. They lead, as a matter of fact, an existence of jumpiness and apprehension. They sit on the edge of the chair of Literature. In the house of Life they have the feeling that they have never taken off their overcoats."
- James Thurber, My Life and Hard Times

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

San Diego, here I come!

This weekend is the Southern California Writer's Conference in San Diego, and I'm going. It will be my, oh, two hundredth year of attending, and I'm as excited (and slightly nervous) as the first time.

SCWC has two conferences a year, one in September in Newport Beach and one over the President's Day weekend in San Diego. They've also had one in Palm Springs a few times, but it has turned out to be a difficult location, and the directors cannot do three conferences a year without suffering nervous breakdowns.

I'm only in charge of one Author's Luncheon, and I can feel their pain.

My first conference with them was in Palm Springs in 2006. I was told about the February conference in San Diego, but thought I'd skip that one - until I saw who was going to be teaching workshops. So I went in February, thinking I'd skip the September one - until I saw the workshops being taught. At some point, I resigned myself to two conferences a year because it might kill me to miss one.

I've posted before on what a great, working conference this is, but now I'm going to show you some examples. First, let's see a clip of the kind of speakers we get to hear, and what they have to say:

One of my favorite workshops is where you read your query or synopsis and Marla Miller identifies the problems with it. This is an online version of what she does at SCWC:

Lastly, the conference directors are dedicated to making this conference a good value for everyone's money, however, they are an irreverent crew and like to lighten things up. They've put out a series of videos highlighting the conference and the writer's life. Here's one of my favorites:

This conference began as a curiosity, but it is now my community. I know I can count on these people to give me strong feedback, critique, and advice on my writing, from creation through promotion.

Writers, artists, creative types - do you have a community, or are you a lone wolf?


Rick Ochocki said...

It's cool that we're now both in the same community! See you tomorrow.

Tameri Etherton said...

I have a community, too! You're so awesome. Can't wait to see you tomorrow. And you too, Rick!

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