Countdown to WC

WC! WC! WC!

Four days to go! SUPER-DUPER EXCITED!

And no, I’m not talking about this WC:

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Not the German WC (water closet), although I’d LOVE to go back there someday.

No, my WC stands for WRITERS CONFERENCE. As in:

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My home away from home. That wonderful place where authors, agents, editors, and comedians converge to be among their own kind. It’s a place where people actually get me, and don’t tell me I’m just wasting time, sitting in front of my computer ALL DAY–not accomplishing anything, not supporting my family, not going anywhere, should just give up… WC is a place of encouragement, advice, eating, and social-networking with people just like me! (Although, some are a bit crazier than I am…yes, it’s possible.)

When I meet aspiring writers and they ask me “How do I get started?”, the first thing I tell them to do is to find a WC near them. Preferably one that caters to their genre/and or beliefs–if you write children’s books, don’t go to an adult vampire murder mystery WC… unless you really want to, but I don’t think that’ll further your children’s book career…

WC’s are a great place to start the journey of “serious” writing. So many of your questions will be answered, and the best part: you’re in a place FILLED with people JUST LIKE YOU! A place where you can sit down next to someone and not talk for a whole hour, and they won’t ask you if you’re mad at them. A place where you can be lost in your own world, and they think it’s COOL! A place where they cheer you on for sitting in front of your computer for long periods of time. A place where you can say random things like “How do you think I should kill him?” “Dagger or sword?” “Should my castle be stone or wood?” They’ll actually reply, and they won’t give you the “crazy” look…because we’re all CRAZY there! 🙂

My first WC had me scared silly. I felt like a fraud because I hadn’t published ANYTHING yet. I just loved to write, and I knew that I’d go crazy if I didn’t pursue my passion. Everyone was so nice, but they kept asking me “so, what do you write?” To which I replied “Whatever I want.” Being at the WC helped me find my focus and my genre (my love for teenagers led me toward YA!). And today if you ask me that question I’ll say “YA urban fantasy–that’s quirky and witty.”

I still remember that first conference. A wonderful woman took me aside and said, “You’ll probably be crying by the end of the week. There’s so much to process and it can be overwhelming. But it’s okay. We’ve all been there, done that, we understand.” She was so right. Although, truthfully, I was crying after day one. But knowing that it was understandable, and even smiled upon to cry, helped me through that first WC. Some pretty amazing people let me cry on their shoulders, encouraged me to press on, and have offered me friendships that I didn’t know existed. Having people that GET ME has blessed my life in so many ways. It’s help me improve and hone my craft, and has given me an even bigger passion for the written word.

I’m about to attend my sixth WC, and I can’t imagine not going. It is my rejuvenation–a FULL week that gets me through the year–reminding me that I’m not alone. That what I feel is normal. Let me tell you, it’s such a great feeling to be understood and not considered crazy.

So, if you have never been to a WC, it’s the BEST place to get connected and to get a foot into the writing world.

**I plan on posting every day from WC–a quick tidbit that I’ve learned, a valuable life lesson, or maybe just what I ate (NOM NOM)… stay tuned, and come along for the WC ride!

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4 thoughts on “Countdown to WC

  1. Janelle, you are a delight! I’d go to WC just to sit by you and laugh. You are right. WC is the answer to your I want to get published and I don’t know how needs. And so much more. You have to go to WC to really understand. Enjoy your week. My heart aches to be with you, but other responsibilities prevent me this year. Dumb excuse, I know. Hugs to you and my writer friends who encouraged me through the dregs of the writing life. It’s hard you know. Especially since I don’t drink coffee!

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