You should know by now that I have a thing for conferences and conventions. They tend to scratch my social itch in a way nothing else can quite reach. Because of this, I have been to lots of them. More often as an attendee than a presenter, but with a round view of both, I think.
Over the years, my favorite conference has always been the LDStorymakers conference in Utah. During my very first one, I made some lifelong friends and found myself welcomed into the loving arms of the writing community, even though I was 100% green at the craft. The foundation I found with these people has become a rock to which I have clung through my journey as a writer, and also as an evolving person.
That said, it’s slightly possible I may have some bias toward conferences sponsored by the LDStorymakers. But if that’s true, then it stems back to my first conference with them, in which we had only around 70 people in attendance, and James Dashner taught a class about writing strong supporting characters (during which we had a fascinating discussion about Star Wars—but I digress). If you can picture small classrooms in a small-ish hotel, crowded with hungry, eager soon-to-be authors, that’s what I remember.
And it’s also what I found again at this year’s LDStorymakers Midwest Conference held in Kansas. Small, intimate, and attended by hungry, eager writers who are fighting through the bottle neck of publishing.
Guys. I have SO MISSED that intimate setting. I didn’t realize how much I missed that until I was there. Of course, as always, the classes were stellar, the bookstore run professionally and with a large selection of books, and the offerings fantastic. But even more, the social time was killer.
What else can I say, other than YOU SHOULD GO! If you live anywhere in or near Kansas and are wanting to learn more about writing and publishing, go. If you have to travel a little distance to get there, it’s still worth it.
I could keep trying to convince you, but instead, I think I’ll let some pictures do the talking.
|Authorpalooza at the library the Friday before the conference. So fun!|
|Agent Sarah Negovetich and I entertaining ourselves by organizing Danyelle's bookshelves (thanks for being patient, Danyelle!)|
|Because it just wouldn't be right without a specialized treat run.|
|And seriously, what better people to spend the opening night of The Maze Runner than the people who I met the same weekend as James?|
|And after it was done--late night snacks at Denny's. Because, obviously.|
|Our authorpalooza panel.|
|This one is my favorite. It kind of says it all! (aka You will sing, you will dance, you will make forever friends!)|
You can learn more about the LDStorymakers conferences (Utah and Midwest) at www.ldstorymakers.com.