|DL Larson, Morgan Mandel, Debra St. John|
Book Beat Babes at Spring Fling
Conferences can be costly, especially when well known headliners are offered. Those people don't appear for nothing. Not only is the conference committee responsible for travel expenses for their featured guests, but also their rooms and speaking fees.
Also, decent venues don't come cheap. The committee usually needs to guaranty a certain amount of attendees, as well as people staying overnight, not to mention meals for those at the conference.
I understand how the expenses can add up, yet sometimes certain conferences can be more costly than others. Because of the cost, I've passed on some conferences I would have loved attending.
Still, I couldn't pass on 2014 Chicago-North RWA Spring Fling. For one thing, Chicago-North RWA is my chapter, and I wanted to show support. For another, The chapter rate of $160 for a two-day conference was decent compared to other conferences. The headliners were great, and I knew I'd take something back from hearing them. Also, it would be a great opportunity to network with authors I hadn't seen in a while. Since I've gone the indie route, pitches to editors and agents didn't interest me, but many people attending took advantage of that opportunity.
My favorite was Mary Balogh, an author of 100 books. I loved her wit. Not only that, her observation that writing is never easy made me feel I wasn't the only one who struggled at times to get my manuscripts completed.
Perseverance and determination are still key ingredients for writers to survive, even when they've already published more books than I could ever dream of writing.
I did get to network with authors I hadn't seen in a long while. I also got fed very well. The venue was beautiful.
Adam Grabowski, the comedian during the gala dinner, actually made me and others around me laugh! That doesn't always happen.
An added plus was it took less than twenty minutes to get there from my house. Couldn't beat that convenience.
What I most got out of the conference was inspiration. Being among my own kind who suffer similar anxiety and setbacks made me realize I'm not alone. Sure, when I sit at my computer, I'm the one who needs to create my own book, but still, there are many others out there who are hard at work doing the same thing. It may not always come easy, but we can do it!
Find Morgan Mandel's books at
& her Amazon Author Page at
What about you? Have you been to any good conferences? Or, don't you go to them?