#WDC19 Wrap Up

Another Writer’s Digest Annual Conference in NYC is in the books (*self-eyeroll*) but this one was different because it was my first as an agented writer. For me, that changed the vibe some and I found myself pulled more toward the marketing and book release side of things than ever before. I still attended craft sessions too, and sat some terrific, insightful presentations.

Which was the answer I gave to the question, “If you have an agent, why are you here?” late Friday night.

It’s no secret MANY attendees travel to WDC for the Pitch Slam. I did the same my first year, but what’s kept me going back is that I learn something every con. How could you not when listening to experienced talents like NK Jemisin, Steven James, Min Lin Lee, etc.? Every perspective, every way of approaching something adds to your own bag of tricks and development. None of us know it all.

BUT you’re not reading this for my high-horse soapboxing. You want to know how the sessions went. Happy to oblige.

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How I Got My Literary Agent

Much like my Friday Morning FYIs, I’ve slacked as far as writing this post, but this one is for good reason. Since signing with the amazing Kaitlyn Johnson of Corvisiero Literary, I’ve been writing the second book in my MG ghost series and working with Kaitlyn on revisions for book 1. To say these are exciting times is an understatement 🙂

BUT I always love reading these kinds of posts, so wanted to do one, too. I hope it inspires some of you struggling in the slushpiles like I did for so long.

Okay, enough preamble.

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A little writing update. No big. Just ZOMG I’M SO PUMPED

Everyone! Come here! Listen!

If you follow me on the Twitter you already know THIS, but if not, it’s my outstanding pleasure to announce I’ve joined the Corvisiero Literary Agency family, represented by awesome agent Kaitlyn Johnson. I’m thrilled to work with Kaitlyn on my middle grade ghost hunter novel.

Patrick  Swayze Ghost GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

NO! Not that kind of ghost story. I said Middle Grade. What’s wrong with you?
 

Snow Winter GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

Dude, too soon.
 

Hmm. That’s not too far off. I’ll take it.
 

😉

I’ll write a longer post on how Kaitlyn and I came to join forces some time over the next week-ish.

GAH! SO excited!
 

Thanks for reading,

{RDj}

Friday Morning FYI – 2/22/2019

Welcome to your Friday Morning FYI (something-like-a-year-since-the-last-one-of-these edition) – my chance to share observations/rants in short, easy-to-consume form.

I recently had a short story published (*shameless self back pat* – won 1st place) in a new annual anthology competition called The Bould Awards. It’s a small thing in the grand scheme and came after years of submissions, but it let me create an Amazon author page, which is kind of cool.

That got me thinking about all the paths to publishing available to writers today. It used to be that you’d type out your work (good god, how did people write anything without BACKSPACE, Cut > Paste, etc.?), somehow get the name of a publishing agent, stick your work in a yellow envelope, hand it to a smiling neighborhood postman, and pray. Now we’ve got blogs and online profiles, email, content-formatting submission forms, Twitter contests, live-pitching at conferences, small press open calls, Wattpad, hybrid publishing, a hundred forms of self-publishing, etc. This is good and bad, of course. With availability comes opportunity, but also mountains of content for decision makers to weed through and for your work to be compared against. Still, what a world!

That brings us to this week’s FYI:

The only thing worse for your art than comparing your work/struggles/achievements to someone else’s is assuming there’s only one path to whatever you define as success. Everyone’s golden ring is different. If you have one book in you, there’s options. If you have ten books in you or a bunch of short stories or fifty pieces of flash fiction or a poetry collection, same answer. Don’t get hung up on someone else getting picked over you for a contest, writer friends around you landing agents or selling short stories, or whatever. Focus on you and your art, craft it as best you can, and learn from every new sentence/paragraph/page/chapter/story. In the end the most important thing is to persist along your path, not trace anyone else’s.

 

Thanks for reading,

{RDj}

#WDC18 – You Know the Drill

Here we are again, ya’ll, deep in the post con funk that is the week after the Writer’s Digest Annual Conference in the greatest city in the world (don’t @ me, people from everywhere else, I didn’t come up with the nickname). This was lucky number five for me and, as always, it was a trip. New tips found, new writing depths explored, and new doubts over which to panic (I kid. *weeps*). Old friends and a metric ton of new ones, all there to get better at this insane make write words thing we does.

Maybe I should keep practicing.

Anyway, that brings us to my follow up post where I wax poetic about all the sessions I adored (like I did for past WDC cons here, here, here, aaaaaaaaand here). Let’s keep it tight this year, I think, yes? Simple day by day format, maybe? Okay, you convinced me.

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