Sunday, September 16, 2012

5 Things You Can’t Forget- Conference Countdown!

If you’re heading to Dallas for the national ACFW conference in a few days like I am, you’re probably drowning in lists. I have a one that I typed out that includes everything from my one sheets to toothpaste. As I check things off, I know they are packed and hopefully, I won’t forget a single thing.
But as we hurriedly make lists, iron gala dresses, and print out one sheets, do we miss the most important things we need to be taking? So as we countdown the days to Conference, here’s a final list to consider.

1 – A smile – They say you’re never fully dressed without one, so don’t forget to pack your smile. And not just at your dream editor or best friend/critique partner. Smile at people you don’t know. Huge conferences tend to be overwhelming and it’s easy to feel a little lost. Especially if you’re new. So challenge yourself to not only see old friends and pitch to editors, but to be a bright spot in someone else’s day. Simple gestures often have long lasting results.

2 – An open mind – In a changing publishing industry, things don’t always go the way we plan. And when our hopes get dashed, it’s easy to feel discouraged. Remembering to keep an open mind before the conference makes it so much easier to handle if the unexpected happens.
3 – A willingness to learn – There’s an abundance of information to be gleaned at a writer’s conference, so be prepared to learn it. Not only during workshops, but in all aspects of the conference. Are you ready?

4 – A readiness to assist – Be prepared to be there for other people and to make your conference experience more than just about you. Taking the focus off yourself and onto others will help calm your nerves, plus make someone else’s day in the process.
5 – Prayer – More important than any of the others, this is number 1. Being too busy or too preoccupied with everything to pray, leaves out the Lord who is our reason and ability for even being there.  While the conference is huge and hectic, find time for a few minutes with the Lord. It will bless you beyond belief! And if you need prayer, visit the prayer room. It’s a special perk of the conference.

Have we added these items to our lists?

Looking forward to seeing many of you in Dallas!
Happy Writing,

P.S. Check back Wednesday, September 26th for a conference recap. Expect lots and lots of pictures!

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