Why Do You Go to Conferences?

A great question was sent the other day and thought it would help explain the other side of the table, so to speak.

Steve? Why do you go to conferences? You have big agency with a lot of clients already.

That is an excellent question and one that I get asked rather often, at conferences! (…Why are you here?)

1) Teaching
I enjoy teaching and the opportunity to train writers in how this industry works. Everybody has to start somewhere and the writers conference is a great place to learn.

2) Learning
I learned at conferences…while on faculty! When I started as an editor in 1992 I came from the retail side of the aisle. I knew nothing about writing or publishing or editors. But I knew books.

It was at conferences over they years where I learned the ropes. I took classes from other faculty. I sat with editors and listened to how they worked. I read the books everyone recommended. In short I learned.

3) Relationships
I’ve met thousands of writers over the years at conferences. Many are now successful authors and some of those are clients!

At conferences I look forward to seeing old friends and making new ones. Working alongside other faculty members and writers has built a vast community of like-minded people with a like-minded vision.

4) A Successful Business
As mentioned, many of those relationships have developed into clients whose books are distributed far and wide.

Book ideas have come while sitting under a tree in a courtyard or walking along a lake. Books ideas have been sold to an editor too!

I see the writers conference as part of the fabric of what we do as an agency. We are out-and-about meeting people face-to-face.

I look forward to hearing new ideas from writers. You never know whose story or idea is going to click. And to hear the passion of writer behind the idea is invigorating.

Yes, we have a lot of clients already. But that does not prevent us from finding the next best writer. We are always on the lookout.

Your Turn

From your perspective, why would an agent go to a conference? Other than to meet you…

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