The San Francisco Writers Conference is history. At least for 2010.
Scores of agents, editors, presenters, volunteers and hundreds of writers have left the Mark Hopkins Hotel and are back home, or headed in that direction.
Three members of my writers group and I are all back, with our binders full of notes, bags full of books, pockets full of business cards and hearts full of hope.
During the Feb. 12-14 conference, we spoke with agents who seemed interested in our work. We talked with editors and heard their professional assessment of our writing projects. We now have renewed writing energy.
Writing, as you may know, is an isolated, difficult and often lonely business. We sit at our keyboards attempting to say something significant with style and grace and it’s often hard to know if we’re succeeding. But we keep at it. I keep at it because I love to tell stories, love to share what enriches my life.
For three lovely days we writers stepped out of our desktop isolation, into a welcoming ocean of like-minded souls. We were surrounded with hundreds of others who know exactly what it’s like to try to create scenes and characters and dialogue using nothing but letters, sentences and paragraphs.
We listened to best selling authors Steve Berry and Jacquelyn Mitchard. We shared our own stories with writers at breakfast and lunch. And we listened to their stories about the pirate books they were writing, the memoirs, urban fantasies, and novels.
I was thrilled to connect with Scribd mates. Like pen pals finally meeting after years of writing to each other, we shared scribd experiences and spread the word about posting work on Scribd.
And on Valentine’s Day morning, we took part in "Speed dating with agents," where we briefly described our book or writing project to a series of literary agents, hoping one or two would ask to see our work.
Even though I’m happily married to Sweetheart Al, I found speed dating agents on Valentine’s Day exciting!
And to make everything even better, San Francisco was at its beautiful best. The morning fog, softening hard-edged architecture, gave way to sunshine and blue skies by mid-day.
Thank you Michael Larsen and Elizabeth Pomada for providing such a rewarding weekend conference for all of us who write.
So now I’m back. I go to bed to the sounds of frogs and owls instead of sirens and traffic. During the day I hear wild turkeys pecking around instead of the clang of San Francisco cable cars.
Yet my head is buzzing with ideas on plot and pacing. New beginnings. Exciting middles. Powerful endings.
And … I still have to unpack.
Read more of my work at sunnylockwood.com
Or at Scribd.com/luddite
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(but I must warn you, I don't tweet much)