Monday, November 06, 2006

World Fantasy Convention Overview

The World Fantasy Convention is one of the largest gatherings of speculative fiction writers, artists, agents, editors, publishers and fans. It occurs annually, but the location varies from year to year; most conferences take place in U.S. cities, but there have been (and will be) meetings in Canada and England. The number of attendees seems to be around one thousand based on the two years I have attended.

(autograph session at World Fantasy Convention 2006)

Conferences are good opportunities to network with peers and others that you would like to be connected with. It can be very intimidating to attend, especially if you don’t know anyone ahead of time. There are a number of books on the subject of networking, but my recommendation is People Power by Donna Fisher.

There is a wealth of knowledge in those who attend WFC, and most people are more than willing to share it. Even if you can’t summon the courage to talk to anyone, attending the panel discussions can help you learn new information about the market, trends, how to improve and more.

Don’t wait to be published before attending a writer’s conference. I made that mistake for years. It is difficult to work up the nerve (at least for me), but the experience cannot be gained elsewhere. Also, you will find people who are quite open to conversing with unpublished writers wanting to break in. We’ve all been there, and becoming a published author simply leads to the next challenge (much like an adventure story where each completed task builds towards an even greater one).

WFC has something for every level of writer. If you attend and feel lost or uncertain, find me. I’ll talk to you.

No comments: