This past weekend I attended the Liberty States Fiction Writers Conference in Iselin, NJ and what a great conference. Liberty States Fiction Writers is a multi-genre organization dedicated to the education and support of all fiction writers. They provide workshops and networking events to aid both published and yet-to-be published writers. They have 100+ members and I believe there were over 150 attendees at the conference.
I get such a rush going to these events, meeting my writer friends and making new friends, talking to people in the publishing world. Especially talking to writers and readers about books and the industry. The workshops and speakers were excellent.
Tracey Lyons gave a great talk on “Going Fishing: How to Catch an Agent” with helpful tips for those just beginning the agent hunt and those who have been out looking for a while. Some great links: Litmatch Querytracker Publishersmarketplace http://www.sfwa.org/Beware/agents.html http://www.aar-online.org/
Sarah Wendell from Smart Bitches/Trashy Books Blog Gave a helpful talk titled: “Everything You Wanted to Know about Blogging but Were Afraid to Ask”. One of the points she made was that you don’t have to blog if you don’t want to. Some authors blog because they were told they have to, but if you hate it, don’t do it. Blogging regularly is good but it doesn’t have to be every day. If you go more than once per week, you may not get a regular following.
Virginia Kantra always gives a fabulous workshop. This workshop was on “Dialogue: Character, Conflict and Communication”. I liked her point, “If she (character) can think it, she can say it, better if she says it to the hero, and better still if she can fight about it.” Some other good tips: It’s good to have torture scenes, embarrassment scenes, concealment or secret scenes, and revelation/confession scenes in your book
I also got to meet a few people I hadn’t met before like Kate “Katiebabs” Garrabrant who writes as KT Grant for Decadent Publishing and Ravenous Romance. She also has an awesome Katiebabs blog and she reviews books. Not sure how she finds the time.
I met K.A. Mitchell who writes gay romance for Samhain Publishing. Had a great chat with her about publishing and stuff. Nice lady.
And I got to chat with Ellora’s Cave author J. Hali Steele Love the book cover for her Angels In Love book.
Mary Janice Davidson was a hoot to listen too—her workshop: Finding your Subgenre in Saturated Markets (I walked in toward the end) and her keynote. It’s always encouraging to hear the struggles of a successful author and how she made it. And Mary Janice tells it with her quirky humor.
I had the chance to say hello to my publisher Raelene Gorlinsky from Ellora’s Cave who’s exciting about the new lines and themed series at Ellora’s Cave: Sex Bytes- using modern technology and sex like IM, Skype, online dating, etc. Love Letters-love letters, cards, diaries. Oh Canada- stories set in Canada. Also looking for fetish themed stories and erotic horror.
I met so many people and chatted with so many friends including my friend Jonathan Maberry who was busy signing tons of his zombie books. His new Rot and Ruin, a YA post-apocalyptic novel just came out and is getting great reviews.
Looking forward to next year.