Yesterday, I went to my first writers conference. (Conversations and Connections hosted by Barrelhouse)
The day started off great, I took the train to center city. When getting off the train, I went looking for an exit because it was an unfamiliar stop. When walking around there was a homeless man standing in front of a Dunkin Donuts. He was asking for money for breakfast. I said, “Sure, I can help. ” Then proceeded to talk to him and gave him $5 dollars then we parted ways. I was heading for the exist and this new friend went into the store. Folks often think that the homeless are trying to get money for other things then basic needs, I haven’t found this to be true. They merely want what we all long for, respect and compassion.
The conference was at the University of the Arts on Broad St.
There was a good crowd with over 100 folks. Throughout the day I went to a few panel sessions; Agents, Writing about Difficult Subjects, and Submitting to Editors.
Over lunch there was a Speed Dating with Editors, this is where you get 10 minutes to show your work to someone in the business of writing. You cannot choose who you sit in front of, they randomly place you with someone in your genre of writing. I was non-fiction, so little did I know at the time that I was just placed in front of the editors of Story Quarterly. Three folks led by Paul Lisicky. I showed them a bit of the first chapter of “I don’t dwell” They loved the project and gave a lot of good suggestions for revisions. I have made these revisions on the sample chapter placed on my web site.
This was my first conference and it definitely will not be my last. I got to talk to many folks about my book and everyone was amazed at recovery. I am also looking forward to some of the stories the other author’s talked about and look forward to seeing how they progress.