Writer’s Conference Summary

Once per year I attend a writer’s conference where I can meet other writers and hone my craft and learn about marketing. This one knocked me down just a wee bit with the reality of the changing marketplace for books and the state-of-the-agent. I met some great folks (maybe even some I’ll keep in touch with) and made some fantastic contacts with professionals, learned about craft and online resources. The workshops were helpful albeit exhausting.
The literary marketplace reminds me of the music industry. People can self-publish and self-promote now, just like musicians can record and distribute. The accessibility of recording equipment and inexpensive presses seem parallel. So, since everyone can do it, does that mean everyone should?
I’ve seen some powerful documentaries about this very question…Here is one show that explores what is happening in this new age of “sharing”… http://ripremix.com/
Being a creativity advocate, I am grateful that our expressions can come with less financial sacrifice and more fluidly. I’m trying to see where I might fit in with regards to placing my fiction writing, which sounds easier on the outside than it feels on the inside. I need to buoy myself with the tenets of creativity when I can’t touch the bottom in the sea of competition and superficiality. Sure feels like I could sink sometimes, especially when surrounded by one-hundred writers who are disappointed in their book sales, jaded maybe, or have that look in their eye that I recognize so well–to be unsolicited however, does not have to mean unsoulicited. We create for our individual selves, because we HAVE to, however, moving our work from the micro to the macro is not always in our hands, as my friends Jimmy and JJ like to point out when they can’t fix my tears. It’s both a blessing and a curse to be an artist (and now the artist must be marketeer which is double-sided as well.)

Singing, writing, playing, painting~ we all need our readership, our audience; we need the collective~ we need each other.

This song seems to capture the tension of the artist/creator:


I’ve felt it coming all these years – Running through the tears

Passing through the crowd – Dreaming out loud

Slipping through my hands – Then it’s back again

Forever to stay – Never away

It’s something that I am – Never part of the plan

From cradle to grave – What a life we have made

Darkness and light – Revered and defied – A beautiful life

Chorus: I can feel it in my blood – it’s taking me

I can feel it in my bones – it’s shaking me

I can feel it in my soul

Forever damned – a Renaissance man

Glorious and bright – Wonder and strife – A beautiful life

It’s a solitary road – An unfortunate load

Not a path I chose – Oh God only knows

It was written in the stars – Between Venus and Mars

A romantic at heart – Trying to play his part

Tortured and torn – Constantly worn

Summoned by the wind – With me till the end

A royal delight – Cuts like a knife – A beautiful life

Repeat Chorus:

Downtrodden – Inspired

No apologies required

I can feel the full moon pulling the tide

Never denied – A beautiful life
By Joseph Bright