My Surreal Life Continues

So often words seem insufficient, but what else can I use to communicate? Well, words and pictures . . .

In my next post I will tell you what this . . .


. . . and this . . .

Sand Castle

. . . have in common.

But, for now, let me tell you a little about the Write Canada conference I attended Thursday through Saturday.

The Word Guild Logo

Above is the new logo for The Word Guild, sponsor of Write Canada. Pretty spiffy, huh? It was officially revealed on Friday night. Excellent job, Ruth Thorogood – and those who worked on the project with you.

So, what made the conference – and the day before – so special this year?

I attended The Word Awards gala with my friends Rita, Lisa, and Lisa’s eldest daughter on Wednesday. Lisa won the first award of the evening. Kudos, my friend! (Lisa also drove, so it was great to relax and, literally, go along for the ride.)

My publisher was at the gala. He and his wife were in a serious car accident earlier this year, so it was especially wonderful to see him up and around.

Write Canada 2014 Conference Speakers

The keynote speakers, workshops, and continuing class speakers were great. I learned tons. Thanks to author and pastor Mark Buchanan; New York Times bestselling author Ted Dekker; award winning author Sandra Orchard, author and editor Jesse Florea; executive editor Vicki Crumpton; and literary agent Steve Laube – and those whose sessions made me wish I could clone myself (sorta kinda).

From Fiction Basics to What Agents Can Do for Writers . . .

From Writing for Children to What’s New in Publishing . . .

And the debate . . .

“You’re not weird; you’re writers” (Mark Buchanan) vs. (in essence though not verbatim) “We’re all weird, yes?” (Ted Dekker). (Just another example of how two writers can say the same thing in opposite ways. :D)

Blue Pencil Reviews

Though my novel isn’t anywhere near ready for pitching, I thought I’d take the first six pages to show to an editor. However, when I learned that a children’s magazine editor was doing reviews, I decided to see what he thought of a couple of my picture book manuscripts.

And you know what . . .

He seemed quite excited about the first idea and requested I send it after only a little tweaking. He was also interested in a shortened version of the second piece.

Business Card #1 . . . For those of you who haven’t attended a writers’ conference, just know that it is a real privilege when an editor or agent hands you his or her card (though, of course, not a guarantee of publication or representation). Unlike the jujubes our conference registrar always brings, they don’t hand out their cards freely.

Other One-on-One Meetings

I sat down with both an agent and an editor to discuss my idea for a novel. As I mentioned, it isn’t ready for pitching, but I wanted to know if they thought it had potential.

Business Cards #2 and #3 . . . Can you see why I now call this “my surreal life.”

This means I really have to hunker down and get the first draft of my novel written. Glad I signed up for Camp NaNoWriMo in July.


While one of my friends sets up much of her work for the coming year while at the conference, you can pretty much say with 100 percent certainty that my idea of networking is reconnecting with “old” friends and making new ones. And what an incredible group of people they are. I won’t even begin to name them, but they know who they are.

I did iron out a few more details for an editing assignment while I was there. That counts as work, right?

Looking Ahead

The week ahead looks a little like this . . .

Complete five more modules in the children’s writing course I’m taking

Work on my novel Monday-Friday

Write five or more blog posts

Assemble Write On

Read over a potential client’s brief manuscript and perhaps, touch base with him via Skype

Possibly sit down and discuss another client’s manuscript

Also sit down with a third client to discuss future projects if his schedule allows

Review a skills development book

Read six or more chapters in one of the YA novels I picked up at the conference

Visit fellow ROWers’ sites

And as it says at the top of the page in my day planner . . .

Pick Strawberries and Build Sandcastles

Credit Where Credit is Due

“Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change” (James 1:17 ESV).

5 thoughts on “My Surreal Life Continues

      1. From what I heard in Mark’s and Ted’s excellent sessions, some of the victories will be beyond the writing part of my life. I need to listen to the cds, reflect and steep, but wow.

  1. Pingback: What I Brought Home from Write Canada 2014 | Janet Sketchley

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