Heading off to New England SCBWI

So my bags are packed – kinda – and I’m ready to go – well, not until tomorrow actually. But tomorrow in the a.m. I’ll be off. To the New England SCBWI.

I must admit it’s going to be different.

Every year I’ve gone, I’ve waited in anticipation with my heart all a-flutter because I would be meeting with an agent and/or an editor. And, of course, since the month or more that I’d sent in my pages or query letter – I’d changed them! So I’d print the new ones with a little prepared speech.

“Um, yeah, thanks for the critique of my 10 pages but I’ve rewritten them. Could you please spend two minutes of our fifteen minutes together reading over the first page? Thanks. I mean I really appreciate your one page of notes but through beta readers I’d already come to the conclusion that they could use a little, okay some major tweaking, and needed to be rewritten.”

Usually, the agents requested for me to send pages.

Sometimes they’d get back to me. Some would never get back.


But I’m telling you, the couple hours before those meetings my stomach would hurt as in shooting pain. I tried to relax casually on a couch in the lounge, going back and forth between looking for my friends so I didn’t feel like such a dork, and practicing my memorized verbal pitch for a second novel, you know, just in case the topic came up.

But this year. Is. Different.

No meetings. Though I’m the coordinator for the query critiques so I’ll be talking with ten agents. Ironic, no?

I’m so very excited to talk with friends. And there are so many hot topics to talk about. Self publishing. The D.O.J. Amazon. Great books we’ve read. Just about anything and everything. Kris, my friend and crit partner, gets to meet her agent for the first time. Very cool. I’m attending an ebook building class and one on Amazon for authors.

But I’m also extremely interested in listening to what other writers are talking about. How many are thinking about self publishing? Or how many already have? Or, will that still be a topic that’s whispered about behind closed doors and in dark corners. Kind of like spin the bottle but with publishing.

I guess I’ll find out tomorrow! See you next week!

(And thanks to everyone for the comments and congrats on signing with Pugalicious Press!)

, , , , , , ,

19 Responses to Heading off to New England SCBWI

  1. Ansha Kotyk April 19, 2012 at 11:11 am #

    Spin the bottle is an interesting analogy. 😉 Who’s kissing whom? I guess we’ll find out tomorrow!!

    • Laura April 19, 2012 at 3:32 pm #

      I don’t know but we’ll find out! 🙂

  2. Alex J. Cavanaugh April 19, 2012 at 11:26 am #

    Now you can go in relaxed and ready to learn!

    • Laura April 19, 2012 at 3:33 pm #

      It is a very nice feeling not going in all freaked out to meet with an agent even though I do understand they really are just people and even though I wasn’t nervous in my head, my body reacted otherwise. It was weird.

  3. Natalie Aguirre April 19, 2012 at 11:42 am #

    Have fun! I’ve heard that conference is awesome. I wish I lived closer so I could go.

  4. Andrea April 19, 2012 at 11:56 am #

    Laura, the conference sounds great! I bet you’ll get even more out of it this year if you’re not worrying about a critique.

  5. Patti Nielson April 19, 2012 at 2:33 pm #

    Go and have fun, which is so much easier when you’re not stressed out.

  6. Ghenet Myrthil April 19, 2012 at 3:00 pm #

    Have a wonderful time! I’m going to the SCBWI New Jersey conference in June and doing my first editor one-on-one. I’m sure I’ll be super nervous beforehand, but I’m still looking forward to it. This will be my first SCBWI regional conference. Up until now, I’ve only gone to the big NYC one, where I didn’t sign up for one-on-one/critiques. It’s nice to not have to worry about what’s going to happen at those meetings.

    • Laura April 19, 2012 at 3:34 pm #

      The one-on-one critiques are amazing. So helpful if you get the right editor that understand your work. Have fun in NJ!

  7. Laura Marcella April 19, 2012 at 4:27 pm #

    Have a wonderful time, Laura!!! I’m looking forward to hearing all about it when you get back!

  8. Karen Strong April 19, 2012 at 4:47 pm #

    This is the #1 reason I love going to conferences: talking with other writers. 🙂

    Looking forward to hearing all the great highlights next week.

  9. Leslie Rose April 19, 2012 at 5:06 pm #

    I love the boost of energy that comes from conferences. In my last critiques I asked the agents to comment on my query during our session. It really helped.

  10. Donna K. Weaver April 19, 2012 at 5:20 pm #

    Can’t wait to hear your report.

  11. Kris April 19, 2012 at 7:43 pm #

    Cannot WAIT to see you! It’s going to be a great year–my stomach is all a flutter this year but for different reasons! Meeting my agent, and being on the faculty for the first time! Trying not to bite my beautifully manicured nails…

    So excited!

  12. Traci Kenworth April 20, 2012 at 9:08 am #

    Have fun.

  13. Heather Kelly April 20, 2012 at 10:41 am #

    Having a critique always ruins one good day of a conference. It’s just stressful. Like you, my pages are always different from when I send them in. I’m going to go into my quick query with a more blase attitude, I think. I don’t want to get all stressed out. (Okay, it is moments after I run a SIG–so two stresses smooshed together). I might just have to run upstairs and have a glass of wine after to get back to my fun socializing self.

    Why do we love to torture ourselves. You can live vicariously through me this year, if you need the thrill! 🙂

  14. Lynda R Young April 22, 2012 at 2:24 am #

    I hope you’re having a briliant time there. You’ll be able to enjoy it more this time! 🙂

  15. Marcia April 22, 2012 at 6:10 pm #

    You changed your look! Very cool!

    The spin-the-bottle analogy made me laugh. I trust you’re having a great time at the conference. 🙂

  16. Melissa Sugar April 23, 2012 at 6:22 am #

    Hi, I am a new follower and fan. I read your guest post on Christine Bryant’s blog which prompted me to purchase, A Spy Like Me. I can’t wait to read it on my Kindle this week. I hope you have a wonderful and productive time at the conference. I am attending my first conference in New York this year (just over as month from now) and I am so excited.

Leave a Reply