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It’s Conference TIME!

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Ernest Hemingway said, “Writing, at its best, is a lonely life.” And if you’re a writer you know this to be true. For the most part when you fire up your favorite word processing app, it’s just you, a white screen, and the steady sound of clicking keys or your favorite tunes. Even if your favorite writing haunt is a well-trafficked coffee shop, when the characters start talking, it’s just you and them. On good days, writing transcends time as you measure the day not with hours and minutes, but with word counts and pages. And on a bad day, well, there’s always the internet to distract us.

And when we go out? Enter our personal body guard: the cell phone. I recently read a number of articles discussing the dynamics of smartphone usage. Almost all of the authors mentioned that only after they temporarily put aside their phones did they see how reclusive their phones had prompted them to become.  The point? As previously mentioned, we writers tend to like being alone. We often work hard to find ways to avoid living/breathing human interaction, and if we do get in public? We use earbuds and glass screens to wall ourselves off.

Now, the point isn’t to introvert-shame anyone. Nor is it to say that our writing suffers by not experiencing real-life human interaction (it does, but that’s a different post). The point is to offer you a friendly public-service announcement:

ATTEND A WRITER’S CONFERENCE!

Yes, yes, yes. You’ve seen through my disgustingly obvious endorsement. But it’s true. Most states have writing conferences of some type. WWAT’s favorite, the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators has 51 chapters in the US alone and over 80 Worldwide. “So what?” you say. So here’s an organization with people just like us. An organization made up of people who struggle like we do, sympathize, and most importantly, empathize with our situations. It’s an organization where we can attend a conference and be our introverted selves in a most excessive extroverted manner–you have to attend to know what I’m talking about. And the best part? After you’ve been to one, you too get to be the one saying, “I can’t wait to see everyone again!”

Now, having said all of that, IF you happen to be in the Oklahoma City area <lame humor>and really, who isn’t since we are ridiculously centrally located </lame humor>, sign up. There’s still time. http://oklahoma.scbwi.org/2016-spring-conference-okc/ Hope to see you there! (And if it’s past Saturday the 16th and you missed it, don’t worry we’ll be back in the fall with another nudge.)

2016-spring-conference-flyer

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