Tips on how to get the most out of any writing conference
Treat it like a job
If you genuinely wish to make money off writing, then you are required to treat it like a job or business. So, begin with investing in business cards, commencing author pages on Facebook or quite simply create a blog or Twitter account. Ensure that people can find or contact you post-conference.
Define your brand
After treating writing like a job, you need to figure out what your brand is what you are consistent with. You need to encompass what you sell. So if you are writing picture books and an agent visits your Twitter account and is not satisfied with the tweets of profanity on your account, they will look the other away and approach someone else. While pitching an agent face to face, you have to dress the part and look presentable. You have to be the best representative of what you are pitching for them. And bear in mind, your brand encompasses all that you do and say.
Strategically plan your agent interactions
Conferences offer an opportunity to pitch agents. So, take advantage of this. At some meetings, they offer everything from editors, query critiques and agents. By pitching one agent, a query critique and a 10-page critique, you can successfully get feedback from the three to see if they are interested. If nothing else, it helps to include that you met them at a specific conference.
Find your people
Conferences are one of the best opportunities to meet critique partners. So, tend to convo with as many people you meet to find other writers in your same genre or age group. Even if you leave without pitching an agent, you can leave with a new critique partner who can help you polish your work and put in a good word for you.
Don’t be a wallflower
If you are an introvert or shy, come out and speak up at opportunities allowing you to read your work out loud. Since you never know what agent is listening in? Remember that more you put yourself out there; the more likely you are to get in return.
Make the most of every opportunity
If you notice a literary agent having lunch alone, don’t be afraid to offer them company and display your work. If you see them across the hallway, politely and gently stop them as you never know which interaction could open a door for you. So, don’t be afraid of taking chances.
Don’t be afraid to attend different sessions
If you are a fantasy writer, don’t be scared to participate in sessions on writing mysteries as you never know what hints and tips you may gain about adding suspense and writing about characters. The most important thing is to absorb all information thrown at you and later interpret on how you implement it.