Always Prepared: What to Bring to a Writing Conference, Part 2

Well, I survived the first day of the Pikes Peak Writers Conference, even with a severe lack of sleep. [Hello to anyone I met today!] Since I probably left out a few things to bring (one of them was pain reliever for my headache), I thought I'd let some other chime in with their wisdom.

Of course, if you're flying across country as opposed to driving to a local one-day conference, there will be some differences. Here are some good lists I've come across.

Editor and writer Terry Whalin shares what he brings, what he leaves at home, and how he wished he had prepared.

Writing teacher and novelist Randy Ingermanson interviews conference veteran Meredith Efken to glean her tips.

The Writers Store has a detailed explanation of how to get the most from your conference dollar.

If you want to know what to wear and how to prepare, Marilyn McCaw gives the lowdown on what to expect.

When I read 10 Ways to Prepare for a Writer's Conference, I immediately noticed that I broke rule number one.

And if it's your very first conference, Angela Dion's list of seven essentials will come in handy.

Anything you'd like to add? I'm heading home to watch my daughter's play and then get some sleep before day two tomorrow.


  1. After the Thursday workshops, I needed a pain reliever for my hand. I love to take notes! Enjoyed both the goal, motivation and conflict session and the writing your life workshop. And, great to meet you in person.

  2. Thanks so much, Stacy! Look forward to a mention of you here on Monday.


  3. Debbie,

    I went to the link of the conference you're attending and it looks wonderful! I'll keep it in mind for next year. Next month I'm attending a four-day local conference (I've been to many one-day conferences, but this one is very different--they have an open mic session to read your work in front of agents/editors!(I'm not sure I'll be able to do it.)

    I've read it's a good idea to take a one-page synopsis of your novel (I've done this, but never used it.) However, an editor once asked to see my query letter and since I had a copy with me, she read it (which was sort of nerve-wracking) but she was EXTREMELY nice and said she liked it. :-)

    You are so lucky to be able to meet Randy Ingermanson. I simply love his method for writing "the perfect scene."

    Thanks for all the links. I'm heading over there.


  4. Hi Lorena-
    The PPW is one of the best conferences for the money. I've talked with many agents and editors that are so impressed with it. Andrea Brown (from Andrea Brown Literary Agency) said this weekend that out of 35 years of conferences, this one has the highest quality of work. There are several kinds of 'open-mic' sessions. Some have the author read, while others are anonymous. Regardless, you get lots of great feedback.

    I hope you have a great time at your conference next month. Which one is it?




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