Mar 1, 2013

ANWA Conference Top 10

by Beckie Carlson

I attended the ANWA conference last week and came away with ten things I learned. I would like to share them with you all here. These are in no particular order, just how they happened upon my mind.

1. Everyone has a 'personal mythology' as James Owen says, we all just need to find ours. I have been discovering the truth of this over the past week. My past is kind of interesting...stay tuned!
2. Just because a person is a writer, doesn't mean they know anything, or everything. I was one of those that had to look up what a "protagonist" was before I could find a costume for our Protagonist Ball.
3. There are people in the world that haven't read The Tale of Despareaux. I am not sure why this is true, it is a most spectacular book. You will fall in love with it.
4. Some people don't want help. We had some sessions where we shared what he had written and gotten feedback. I love hearing good things about my stories, but it is hard to hear criticism. I think I did okay though. Some people don't do okay with's not personal!
5. The Hilton in Mesa has not changed since 1986 when I went to prom there. I think they carpet is the exact same carpet I danced those two dances on. I could be wrong...but why duplicate those colors?
6. Just because I am 'away at a conference' does not mean I got any sleep. It wasn't like a Stampin' Up! convention where I stayed up all night playing, I stayed up all night doing homework. I came home more tired than when I left. SO not fair.
7. Arizona has freaky weather. As I drove into the hotel, the sky started spewing out these balls of what can only be described as semi-solid-slush. It was pretty amazing, but made the blinding sun even brighter. I'm lucky I made it alive.
8. Writers are their best customers. Yes, we had a bookstore at the conference and yes, I bought a truck load of books. You are welcome fellow authors, be prepared to pay me back next year!
9. Naps can happen anywhere. After reading the feedback on a few of my "beginning of book" entries, I instantly fell asleep on a chair in the lobby. Maybe this was to avoid the feelings of failure, rejection, euphoria, and concern that the comments brought on...or maybe due to all that late night homework. You judge.
and last but not least.....
10. Agents are people too. I had the opportunity to talk to, eat with, and generally hob-nob with some agents that were super nice. I truly enjoyed them and their feedback. Especially the ones that requested my books!
All in all, it was a fabulous week. I suggest you become a writer, if you aren't already one, so you can join us next year! I didn't even mention all the good food and chocolate.....totally worth it! Cause I said so!


  1. One day I will make it out there always sounds so cool

  2. I'm jealous. I always wish I had the time and money to fly there. Maybe in a year or two.

  3. Sounds like you had a wonderful time. I look forward to future conferences, as well. Trying to save my pennies for next year! hugs~


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