Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Home From New Jersey

I just got back from attending my third 'Put Your Heart In A Book' conference in beautiful *ahem* Iselin, New Jersey. (Don't make the mistake of calling the town 'Icelan' unless you enjoy rude cabbies.) For the second year in a row, what should've been an easy 2.5 hour direct flight turned into a 8 hour nightmare of delayed flights and airport snafus. I'd planned carefully, intending to arrive early morning on Friday for two full days of networking, socializing and workshops, but didn't actually get checked into my room until 8:30 Friday night, missing the entire first day of the conference. Sigh. Other than that, I had a great time!

Here I am with some of my best writing buds (l to r), Anna Sugden, Janice Lynn and Kathleen Long. Not nearly enough time to catch up properly, but did get to crash in Janice and Kath's room for an impromptu pajama party Friday night. I was supposed to moderate a workshop on 'Panic-free Pitching' with Anna on Friday afternoon, but Janice kindly stepped up and covered for me while I was in airport hell.

Saturday morning I attended a hilarious workshop by Victoria Alexander called 'You Don't Have to be Crazy to be a Writer, But It Really, Really Helps'. After that, it was off to attend Jennifer Crusie & Bob Mayer's workshop, called 'Yex & Violence' - what a odd couple they are! Total opposites. Bob is straight guy to Jenny's comedic putdowns, but both of them are so talented and funny that the routine completely works.

One of the high points of the day was an hour and a half lunch with one of my agents, Christina Hogrebe of the Rotrosen Agency. We were joined by NYT bestselling author Carla Neggers and well-known mystery writer Nancy Martin . Both ladies were incredibly gracious to a newbie like me - I got to hear all about book tours and dealing with booksellers and even help do a little brainstorming on a future book of Nancy's. I spent most of the hour and a half trying not to get ketchup on my shirt and pretending to be totally cool with lunching with big name authors. :) Afterward, Christina introduced me to Jenny Crusie, and I had a great chat with suspense writer Mariah Stewart. I owe Mariah so much... she was the first to tell me to 'aim high' when it came to looking for an agent, and has been a wonderful friend and support.

After lunch, I attended an agent panel with Nadia Cornier of Firebrand Literary, Christina Hogrebe, Christine Witthohn of Book Cents Literary, Natalia Aponte of Natalia Aponte Literary, Miriam Kriss of Irene Goodman Literary and Mary Sue Seymour. I'm writing an article on that, as it's way too much info to include in this post :). Check back in a couple of days and I'll have the finished article posted here on my blog.

All in all, a wonderful conference, but boy, was it good to get home!

I've met so many wonderful people at conferences... who would you most like to meet at a writer's conference?

3 comments:

tammy said...

Sounds like you had a great time Terri! I'm not sure who I'd most want to meet - I just wanna go! At this point in my career, I'd be thrilled to meet with the editor I'm targeting and any authors that write for her or the line.

Michele said...

Hi Terri,
Despite the airport woes, it sounds like you had a successful conference! I had a chance to meet Christina Hogrebe in Atlanta when she came up to the OCC suite for a podcast interview with Louise. She's fantastic! Can't wait to read your article.

Michele

Terri said...

Hi Michele! Hi Tammy! Wish you could've been there!

Michele, is there any way to hear Christina's podcast interview or do you have to be a member of OCC?