RTW – Dream Writer’s Conference

This week YA Highway‘s Road Trip Wednesday asks, What book and/or writing conference would you love to go to? I’ve been lucky to attend tons of great writers conferences over the years (the majority of them RWA annual conferences when I was a member). And this year I’ve attended two already (LTUE & Spring Spirit) and have a couple more great conferences planned for the latter half of the year (the SCBWI annual summer conference and the 2012 Novelists, Inc conference).

There are a couple of conferences I dream of attending every year. The first one looks like I will only be able to attend in my imagination–the Maui Writer’s Conference. A quick search on Google tells me that after 17 years, Maui Writers has died. No new conferences since 2009.

But it always sounded like the coolest (albeit quite expensive) conference ever. First of all, who wouldn’t want to go to Maui? It was always over Labor Day weekend, so you already had that extra day off. And I know of one author (James Rollins) who told me he sold his first book thanks to the Maui Writer’s Conference writing competition.

Well, putting aside now imaginary writer’s/books conferences, on to reality. I’ve attended BEA once and that’s a conference I’d like to attend again. Also, ALA, which happens to be in Anaheim this year and I ought to attend since it’s reasonably close. (Note: Tip from a conference-attending pro. If the conference is a short drive or plane ride away, scrape your shekels together and attend).

In the farther away category, I’ve always thought it would be cool to attend one of the big foreign rights book fairs. London, Frankfurt, or Bologna would be great destinations for a combo author’s business trip and vacation. I’d love to see what one of those big international book fairs are like, even thought they’re not geared towards authors.

This wasn’t part of the original question, but of the conferences I’ve attended, I’d highly recommend the RWA conferences (expensive, but plenty of good general information), LTUE for speculative fiction, and the SCBWI conferences for children’s lit, of course (smaller local ones can be especially valuable). Wear comfortable shoes and layers for the over-air-conditioned rooms and you’ll have a great time.

About karensandler

Lover of chocolate. A couple felines short of full-fledged Cat Lady. Author of the YA Tankborn Trilogy (TANKBORN, AWAKENING, and REBELLION), from Tu Books. Founding team member of We Need Diverse Books. Opinions expressed here are my own.
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7 Responses to RTW – Dream Writer’s Conference

  1. Wow, you’ve gone to some great conferences!!!
    I’d definitely love to make it to SCBWI in LA and BEA…plus, YallFest looks like a fab one, too! And of course, Bologna would be amazing!

  2. Kat says:

    So jealous you have gotten to go to so many great conferences! I would love to go to SCBWI but being on the other side of the pond makes it very unlikely. But now that you have mentioned checking out the international book fairs over here would be a fun idea!

  3. Shari Green says:

    Maui died, huh? Who’d have thought…? That’s too bad. I’ll have to attend it in my imagination, too! (Not that I ever would’ve had the cash, but it was a fun dream.) 😉

  4. Beck says:

    Ah an imaginary conference… seems to fit. All those you mentioned sound brilliant. One day… sigh…

  5. A Hawaiian non-profit focused on literacy is launching The Aloha Writers Conference January 18-21 (Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr weekend) at the Ritz-Carlton Kapalua on Maui! Blockbuster novelists like Luanne Rice, John Lescroart, and Kaui Hemmings, author of The Descendants will be there. Look like a lot of the faculty from the old Maui Writers Conference. See http://www.alohawritersconference.com

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