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I was at the Algonkian Write to Market Conference from November 12-15, 2015, in Corte Madera, California. Β The conference was held in Corte Madera, California, and I have to say, I’m super glad that I went. Β I will be writing a more comprehensive review, covering every aspect of the Conference I can think of… but I won’t bore you with the details. Β Here I’ll just post a few pictures and tell you guys what an amazing experience I had.

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You know me, I’m always bright-eyed and bushy tailed at these things. I learned a ton about the publishing business (yes, it’s absolutely a business, and needs to be treated as such) and the things I’ll likely have to do to find an agent and get my career started. I’m looking forward to doing those things (killing my babies, re-structuring my pitch, incorporating more commercial aspects into my work) and reconnecting with some of the Agents I met yesterday during our pitch session.

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Did I mention that I like taking selfies in hotel rooms? It’s a thing. #stopjudging.

Oh, all right, one more:

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I brought Three Tiers to the table, and was told that “romantic sci fi isn’t selling.” Okay, back-burnered. I will return to you, Three Tiers, I swear it. But I also brought Under to the table. It was re-christened “The Danger of Under” and the pitch I workshopped came out pretty darn amazing.

After three gruelling days of workshopping our pitches, sometimes developmentally editing our novels/novel ideas (with Happy Hour becoming a nightly thing… writers like drinks, I guess?), we were ready to meet with Agents. I had my pitch typed out, ready to read aloud to the agents I sat down across from. I was nervous, but excited. This is my career, my job, and a business, but it should also be fun. Right? That’s why we do this thing, because God knows so few writers actually make enough money writing and publishing to support themselves.

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I met some amazing new writing friends while I was working on my own pitch, and I hope that my input was valuable to my new friends. Each and every one of them was creative, intelligent, and invested, and I respect that. We may have competition in this industry, but I sincerely do wish them all the best. After all, we’re not each other’s competition (for the most part). I feel lucky to be able to have support and give support from such an amazing group of talented people.

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Come for the pitching, stay for the snacks. πŸ˜‰

I was able to meet with five amazing agents, get some really wonderful, positive and thoughtful feedback, and am looking forward to revising, editing, and getting my work out there to the agents who said they wanted to read it.

All in all, I learned several important things from this conference:
1.) Never start your novel in a car.
2.) Make sure to EAT, not just drink coffee all day.
3.) The pitch (and, related, query) needs to be SHORT, compelling, and leave the listener (agent) wanting more.
4.) I have a TON of work to do.

And now, if you’ll excuse me, I’ve got to get back to it! πŸ˜‰

Missy