Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Walkabout Wednesday: 2010 LDStorymakers Conference--The Ultimate Recap

It's Wednesday. Let's go walkabout.
(I'm bringing along a few of my mates as I wander through the vast wilderness of the publishing industry, learning the ins and outs, and having a grand adventure.)

Walkabout, Week 34:

Memorable Moments from the 2010 LDStorymakers Writers Conference

* I put books in the bookstore and people bought them. Crazy--Crazy COOL!

* Okay. True story. Boot camp began at the unearthly hour of 7AM, though registration began at 6:30. I do not believe in 6:30AM. I am still convinced it is some kind of mythological thing used to convince people like me that we are missing something by sleeping to more reasonable hours of the morning. But I digress... Heather Brown, Annette Lyon, Michele Holmes and LuAnn Staheli and I demo'd for the boot camp attendees how to give and receive a critique. Being the cooperative, giving person that I am, I volunteered to write a "fake-o" excerpt for our little group to read and offer feedback on. Thinking I would be very clever and entertaining, I wrote a little piece that I entitled "I am Not a Cereal Killer"--a spoof on Dan Well's Whitney Award-winning novel "I am Not a Serial Killer."
Sooo... imagine my horror (little pun there for those of you familiar with Dan's book) when I realized that he was one of the bootcamp table leaders. Yeah. He was In. The. Room. Did not see that coming. I don't think he hates me now. I'm pretty sure he enjoyed it. And, ahem, I'm really hoping he truly is NOT a serial killer.

* I had an epiphany in Julie Wright's [A little aside to say how ridiculously perfect Julie's last name is for an author. Okay. I'm done. Back to my list.] class on putting emotion into our writing. I've had that feeling that something was off in my current Work In Progress, but hadn't been able to pinpoint just what that somethin-somethin was. I figured it out in Julie's class. Thanks!

* I sat next to Lisa Mangum at Saturday's lunch. That was a lot of fun. We talked about writing and editing and ways to dupe the doorprize giver-awayers into thinking we had won the fabulous prizes they were giving away. Ahem. I mean... we planned nothing nefarious or underhanded.

*The repeated trips I made from the ballroom for big group sessions to the other side of the hotel for breakout sessions and perusals of the bookstore definitely counted as a workout. Bonus!

*Kari Pike, aka my own personal apothecary, kept me alive and well throughout the conference. And she made me smell like Christmas. Mmm.. cloves!

* I saw my fantastic editor, Kirk Shaw, across the room multiple times, though I never actually got to say hi. I had forgotten how much taller he is than I am. That's a good thing to remember about someone.

* I taught a class on description and setting. I was in a really big room. Bigger than I thought it would be. Fortunately, I couldn't see over my own laptop, so I didn't realize just how many people were there until I wandered out from behind the podium. I had already warned the audience that I was, and I quote, "a complete dork." I'm not sure they believed me when the class began. They probably believed me by the time the class ended. Ask anyone who attended about the fabulous prizes I gave away, the saga of Dan and Bubba and the discussion of unsisterly affection.

* Janette Rallison and I discussed at length the intricacies of genetics. I'm not kidding. We did. We had no idea what we were talking about, but still came to the conclusion that we had been quite thoroughly lied to in high school biology class.

* I also taught a class on self-publishing. The fantastic Howard Tayler sat in on the class and offered his expertise to the discussion. All-in-all, I believe the class went well and those who attended got some good information.

*Okay, I'm gonna take a quick nap, because recapping all of this is reminding me just how very, very, very tired I was by the end of the conference. (PSST.. My level of exhaustion--I was out of commission Sunday and Monday and barely returned to the land of the living on Tuesday---has convinced me that next year I will stay at the hotel instead of making the trip to and from each day.)

*I'm back. Let's talk about the Whitney Awards banquet. First of all, I got to wear a super cute dress that I made from a circa 1952 dress pattern. I sported my ultra fab 3" brown stilletos. The dinner was beyond yummy. I got to present the Whitney Award for "Best Romance" to Liz Adair for her book "Counting the Cost." And I did not fall off the stage or down the steps, something I worried about more than a little. The entire Whitney Gala was beyond great!

(ignore "


Krista said...

Thanks for the re-cap! it all sounds wonderful and I can't wait until next year. I'd love to see a picture of you in your dress!

Julie Wright said...

Hey Sarah, I am now stalking you because you were so much fun at conference. Can't wait to read your book and just wanted you to know how awesome you are :)

Taffy said...

What!? No pictures of your Whitney attire?
I never did find Aubrey. But I totally enjoyed talking to you for a moment and basking in the good fortune of your books being republished!

Annette Lyon said...

Your description class was the bomb-diggity bomb. I heard more people talking about THAT as their favorite workshop than any other.

You MADE your Gala dress? I loved it! (And I'm so impressed!)

Tanja said...

I have read "i am not a serial killer' and it is a little scary. I hope he isn't mad at you. Sounds like a fun conference. Good work

Angie said...

It was such a fun conference. I'm with you on getting a hotel room next year. I loved your "I am not a cereal killer" spoof. I was sitting at Dan's table. I think he liked it too.

Aubrey said...

I've decided that getting a room next year is definitely the way to go! Loved your description class and your way cool dress.

When I found out you were presenting for Best Romance, I wanted to win so bad just so that you and I could have a big tug-of-war on stage! ;)But I loved Liz's book-- I was so excited for her.

sweetvictorya said...

Sounds like a fun and busy weekend.

Karlene said...

The conference was lots of fun and your class was amazing! Loved it.

Melanie J said...

I'm bummed because I didn't get to say more than "hi" to you. Had time allowed, I might have said things like, "I loved your description class" and "Everyone keeps talking about how funny you are!" and lots of other things. But I will make it a goal to talk to you more next year. In the mean time, I bought a copy of "Courting Miss Lancaster" and I'll let that console me.

Elizabeth Morgan said...

Sounds like something amazing that really really enjoy because it is what you love.

C.S. Bezas said...

You were GORGEOUS in your dress, Sarah. And to think you made it? I had no idea. And I even *have* that pattern!

Great re-cap of the conference.

Josi said...

You made that dress? It was absolutely stunning. I have to admit I admired you from afar most of the conference. After months of hearing Annette tell me how amazing you were, and then listening to everyone else agree I wasn't sure I could handle it if I came across as a complete dork. I should have attended your class then I could have known that we had at least one thing in common :-) Great recap.


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