The weekend of September 17 and 18, I attended the North Texas Christian Writers Conference in Keller, Texas. This conference is unique because of its lack of agents and editors. There is no pressure to pitch, compete, impress or any number of other ways to embarrass oneself. It is a learning conference.
So why attend a writers conference? For me, there are two primary reasons.
First, to learn. A writers who stops seeking opportunities is a writing who will soon be stagnant and unproductive. I attended workshops where the topics tempted one to say “I already know that.” No, I didn’t. I learned or refreshed my knowledge in craft and skill. For example, I learned a new technique to identify passive voice. One I’m sure others knew but I had never seen it in that light before. I also came out those workshops refreshed and energized to keep writing, confident that I was getting some of it right and what I wasn’t, is a least achievable.
Second, to build relationships. I am not referring to networking which can sometimes smack of manipulating to build contacts to help me get published. I’m talking about meeting faculty and other writers who share the dream of writing for Him. I’m talking about sharing our triumphs, our rejections, our stumbles and struggles. I’m talking about encouraging and supporting each other.