As John Arnold said in Jurassic Park right before everything went south, “Hold onto your butts.”
I just booked my hotel room for ReaderCon29. Who’s excited? Meeeee!
ReaderCon29 will be the second writing conference I’ve ever attended, and my very first conference–Boskone–was fun but underutilized. I spent most of my time star-struck, tongue glued to the roof of my mouth, unable to approach authors and talk to them. So many missed opportunities. You can read all about my (mis)adventures at Boskone here.
For example, while I managed to get a copy of Ghost Talkers signed by Mary Robinette Kowal, I could not bring myself to join the circle of fans surrounding her at the art show and tell her how much I enjoyed her writing (not to mention her commentary and sass on the writing podcast “Writing Excuses.”)
Then there was Marshall Ryan Maresca and E. J. Stevens, both of whom (if they noticed me) probably got utterly skeeved out by the weird blonde woman stalking them from a distance all weekend long. Sorry about that, by the way, if either of them by some slim chance ever read this post. Didn’t mean to be a creeper. I just got so fetching shy! It wasn’t just you two. I couldn’t talk to anyone!
Not this time, I am telling myself without much confidence. This time, I will have done it once before. I won’t be a complete newb. I will be able to approach and interact with other people at the conference because I will remember that it is a writing conference. Everyone in attendance will have a love of books and writing in common with me. I will smile, just like last time, but then I will make my feet move, and I will approach people, and I will say “hello” and other normal things. I will not go mute and resort to hiding behind giant plants in lobbies and watching authors from great distances.
Jeffrey Ford is going to be there, though, so I might. The man is an incredible writer. Have you read his short story collection, A Natural History of Hell? Sooooo good!
Anyway, ReaderCon has been on my radar since last summer, when my Fantasy & Science Fiction professor, Mark Edwards, suggested I attend. He described it as the most prominent annual writing convention in Massachusetts. A “not to be missed” event.
I missed it.
But, I vowed to get there this summer. Registered way back in February, even. I mean, I have no excuses to miss it a second time. The cost to attend is incredibly affordable, and it takes place in Quincy, Massachusetts. That’s an hour and a half from where I live, for Thor’s sake. This morning, I went all in on the experience and ponied up the funds to secure a hotel room. Now getting to and from each day won’t be an issue.
I am ready to rock this conference. Okay, not really. I definitely need some pointers, guidance, encouragement, etc.
Here’s my plea:
If you’re also going to ReaderCon, help me overcome the paralytic shyness that grabbed me by the throat at Boskone55 and say hello. Connect with me over on Twitter and Instagram, so that by the time July rolls around, I will (at least in a theoretical, social media sort of way) already know a few folks. How awesome would that be?!
If you’re a seasoned writing conference attendee, what tips do you have for me that will help me make the most of ReaderCon29?
As always, thanks for stopping by, and happy writing to you.