Preparing for the 2010 Willamette Writers Conference

Conference updates, attendee tweets, news, etc.
can be found on Twitter at hashtag #wwc41

Willamette Writers Conference

Bust out the #amwriting and #wwc41 hashtags! The 2010 Willamette Writers Conference is this weekend, and I am stoked. Granted, I only recently found about it, thanks to Johanna Harness and her blog post, Conference Season and #Amwriting. Now I’m a card-carrying member of Willamette Writers and am prepping like mad for WWC.

Workshopping and networking

This will be my first year going, and unfortunately I can only go Saturday. Even with one day, there’s still a lot of workshops, networking and more to look forward to, such as…

  • Mary Andonian & April Eberhardt: Conference Success Basics
  • Robert Dugoni: Playing God: Creating Memorable Characters
  • Gary Corbin: Business Planning: Sell Your Work Not Your Soul
  • Charlotte Cook: Puzzle, Tension, Character
  • Jeff Fisher: Social Networking for the Not-So-Social Writer
  • Nancy Christie: Corporate Writing 101
  • Melissa Hart: Travel Writing for Newspapers and Magazines
  • Meeting other writers and making new contacts
  • And… Talking shop — electronic media, independent publishing, short and long form fiction/non-fiction, marketing, character development, story tension, etc.
  • Putting a face and personal connection to other writing bloggers and twitterers
  • The Saturday night Gala Awards Banquet, with keynote speaker Chuck Palahniuk

What to say, what to ask, what to listen for

Networking this much with other writers is kind of new to me. I’m both excited and a little apprehensive. Here are some things I’m doing in advance to make sure that my WWC experience is fun and productive…

  • Listening more than talking. I want to increase my understanding of the publishing industry, network with other writers, and become more involved in Oregon's writer/author/editor community. I'll have far greater success with always-open ears and a rarely-open mouth.
  • Knowing what to say. I’m not doing manuscript pitches or critiques this year, but when talking with other writers, I'll have in mind things to say. This will help both relay who I am and what I do, and help me learn more about the people I talk with. That way, we're each able to get the most benefit out of our interactions.
  • What blogging or authorship goals do I want to discuss?
  • How do I relay my writing interests and experience?
  • Keep an ear and eye out for other writers who blog, tweet, publish independently, etc.
  • What’s my favorite punctuation? (Kidding… well, maybe—but in any case, it’s the em dash)

Meeting folks

In addition to the interactions of being out and about at the conference, I've heard tell of various meet-ups and such.

Writer Johanna Harness has mentioned planning a tweet-up. Check her blog and twitter feed for updates.

Also keep tabs on the conference's Twitter hashtag #wwc41 for more conference info, meet-ups, etc.

I’m excited to get more involved with writers organizations, especially one such as Willamette Writers. Since their focus is Oregon, I’m seeing opportunity to get to know more colleagues and learn and share a heck of a lot. If I dig the conference, I’ll be planning to go for the entire time in future years.

Are you heading to WWC? Looking forward to seeing you!

Want to go? You can still register. Full info at the WWC website.

3 thoughts on “Preparing for the 2010 Willamette Writers Conference”

  1. I hope you will attend my presentation workshop! And introduce yourself to me. I know from my own experience of attending Willamette as a writer, writing teacher, publisher and now presenter that even a short exposure to Willamette is worthwhile. I’ve learned a lot, met wonderful fellow writers and made some amazing contacts. I wish you the same.


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