Nearly a year has passed since I went to DFWCon2016, and it’s been a strange year in terms of self definition. After DFWCon last year, I was very energized about my writing, making very worthwhile revisions to my main manuscript and starting two other book length projects. I felt good about my pitch sessions, and I was excited to hear back from those agents. Then, I made the mistake of waiting and not working. The waiting lasted a long time and when I didn’t hear back, the waiting turned into apathy. The one good writerly thing that I did was turn to short stories, and they have got me excited about writing again. I’ve been exploring the world of literary journals, and while I’ve found that I’ve got a lot to learn, I’ve also enjoyed the challenge and some of my studying about book querying transfers. I haven’t given up on The Great Defiance either but I’m fine with it sitting on the back burner for a bit. Focusing on craft in short bursts will be my goal, and then I can apply that to longer works in the future.
This was my first writer’s conference, and if I can swing it next year, I’ll definitely be back. The sessions were top notch and the ability to sit down with an agent and discuss my work was so valuable. I think one of the things that I gained from this conference was to realize both the potential of my work and to also see some small things that could be changed to give it a better chance.
As all introverts likely agree, going to a conference, without a wingperson of any sort, is among the worst thing in the world. Still, choosing to do so and making friends in the process is choosing to pursue the future. That’s the direction in which I want to live.