"Required reading" for today's smart writer.

"Required reading" for today's smart writer.
Information & inspiration to hone your craft and increase your cash...Since 2009

Sunday, March 11, 2018

5 Reasons to Attend a Writers Conference this Year

As a writer, one of the things that I love the most is the sense of community and shared experiences of those who are similarly wired. I dig that though we're all different, hail from different geographic regions, have different ideologies, are of varying races, religions and backgrounds, there is a commonality in our goals, struggles and even the way in which we "process" the world.

Online or off,  no matter where you are in your creative journey, or the obstacles you encounter, a fellow writer "gets it" like no one else. Which is why attending a writers' conference is a great way to stay motivated, receive support and achieve some of those new year's resolutions made in January.
Remember? :-)

This weekend, Chicago Writers Association sponsored its first conference, for writers of all levels and genres. This exciting and informative forum was held at the beautiful Whitehall Hotel and featured some literary heavy-weights which included: David Fisher, Joe Meno, Fred Mitchell, Kathryn Craft and Ann Garvin (to name a few). Read more here:

"What do you write?" was the ice breaker that served as the opening line for many "getting to know you" conversations throughout the weekend.

 The great conversations added warmth to this chilly winter season, and represented just one benefit of attending this conference for me.




1. Information and Inspiration

Writers conferences offer an array of resources, tips and strategies to help you to "work smarter, not harder."  Remember that knowledge is power.

2. Networking Opportunities

Sometimes these gatherings can present the right people and circumstances to fill in information gaps; introduce you to others for future collaborative projects; or provide leads to your "dream job."

3. Access to Industry Experts


One of my favorite sessions of the conference was the "Pick the brain" forum where writers were allowed to ask specific questions of the professional panel to address individual pain points and challenges. Things like marketing recommendations, how to craft a query letter, platform building, dialogue dos and don'ts, and how to successfully navigate relationships with editors.

4. Goodies and Freebies!

Who doesn't love "swag bags" filled with decorative pens, journals, bookmarks and other useful items? Winner winner chicken dinner!

5. Feedback and Guidance for your W.I. P. (Works in Progress)

Depending upon what type of conference you attend and the format, you may be able to receive  a critique session from an editor, have peers evaluate your ideas and approach, or simply benefit from Q & A sessions that broaden your knowledge base and help to move the needle on your career.
Trust me; you can't "Google" the quality of information received via these types of forums, folks.

This year's conference was a great success! A special thanks to all of those who made it possible.

Though I hope to have Pen & Prosper readers join us for our next conference here in the "windy city," I'm also providing a listing of other conferences across the globe, that may be of potential interest.


"There is strength is numbers."

Your turn.
Thoughts? Have you ever attended a writer's conference? How was it?
What did you learn?

Typewriter image: Pixabay.com


  1. I attended the writer's conference in Portland, Oregon last August. It was the best decision I ever made since entering this writer's word.

    The writers, the guest speakers, endless conversations and a feeling of family greeted me everyday. You can be the shyest person in the world and you will still find a group. The experience was wonderful and rewarding.

    Happy Monday. Excellent as always.

    1. Bryan,
      So true! Shy folks will feel at ease when in the ranks of fellow writers.
      I love the company and camaraderie of writers.
      Thanks for your time and comment. I always love to hear from you.

  2. Writer's conferences never fail to lend inspiration and great information. I've attended several, although not in the past few years. Will have to check out that link. Thanks so much! :)

    1. Karen,
      I have not attended many, but this one has definitely persuaded me to seek more in the near future.
      So does this mean I'll see you in my neck of the woods next year? lol

  3. I didn't attend one of my favorite conferences this month, but I did meet up with friends who did. They were jazzed and I think I was a bit disappointed that I'd missed out.

    1. Clee,
      I know the feeling, dear.
      Perhaps you might look into another one that's comparable.
      Keep us posted.

  4. This was my second official writing conference and it was very inspirational. Many of the presenters put attendees in the "write" mood by giving assignments. Also, I got good advice on how to draft my roller skating book.

    I'm definitely looking forward to next year. And thanks for my 2 seconds of fame.

  5. You're welcome! I too am looking forward to next year.