Monday, July 26, 2010

Making the Most of a Writers Conference

Another handy-dandy list of reminders for conference goers!

Be considerate of others:
  • Don’t bring your children to a writers conference.
  • Turn your cell phone to off or vibrate. If you receive an emergency call, step out of the room to talk. Don’t text during sessions.
  • Be on time to sessions.
  • If you must leave a session for a critique (or any other reason) sit near the door and leave (or re-enter) discretely
  • Don’t monopolize a speaker’s time.
  • Don’t share the handouts you receive with other people in print or on line without the speaker’s permission. 
Be professional: 
  • Dress comfortably, but professionally.
  • Don’t expect an editor or agent to read & review your manuscript on the spot.
  • Don’t corner editors, agents or speakers in restrooms, etc.
  • Be on time to appointments and finish on time.
  • Bring only your best work to share.
  • Bring a “One Sheet” for each of your manuscripts to offer editors and agents if they ask to see your work.
  • Prepare a one or two sentence “Elevator Pitch” for each of your manuscripts. Memorize them in case an editor or agent says, “Tell me about your story.”
  • Prepare for your appointments with a brief list of questions you want to ask. 

 Be teachable: 
  • Come ready and eager to learn how to improve your craft.
  • Come prepared to be encouraged and to encourage others.
  • Come prepared to be inspired.
  • Come prepared to hear from the Lord. 
Be organized: 
  • Come prepared with notepads, pens and pencils, your laptop, your camera, your phone charger.
  • Bring professional looking business cards to exchange.
  • Bring a large tote bag for collecting fliers, hand outs and goodies.
  • After the Conference organize all those papers to maximize their usefulness. 
Be friendly:
  • Come expecting to renew old friendships and to make new ones.
  • Reach out to others, deliberately sit with new people.
  • Come prepared to share and to listen to others share.
  • Come prepared to pray for others.
  • Come ready to have lots of fun.


Linda A. said...


This is handy dandy indeed.

Linda A.

quietspirit said...

Thank you for all the pointers. When I went to my first conference, I didn't know very many of these points of etiquette.
I learn so much from blog entries like this and from an online group to which I subscribe.

Thanks again

Kristi Butler said...

Great pointers, Jean!!!

Thanks for sharing!!

Love, hugs, and prayers to you my friend!

Cheryl Barker said...

I wonder if it's considered acceptable to pick up a handout for another conference goer who is attending a different session than you are. Sometimes sessions we really want to attend are offered at the same time. What do you think, Jean?

Jean said...


At every conference I've attended many presenters have invited people to pick up their notes if they couldn't attend their workshop.

But posting those notes on a blog or website, or distributing copies to your critique group, etc. is a real no-no unless the presenters grants permission.


WordWrangler said...

WHat a great list, my friend. I need to print this off for me, too!