- by Victoria Janssen
How do you decide whether you should attend a writers’ conference?
1. Do I have enough contacts with readers and other writers?
Hint: The answer to this is always no.
Can I afford the time and money to attend this conference?
2. Budget – where is the conference located? Are there alternative ways to get there? How do those stack up against your budgets of a) time and b) money? How does the conference conflict with other events in your life?
3. Budget – once you arrive, where will you stay and what will you eat? How do those alternatives stack up against your budgets of a) time and b) money? If money is short, how can you save money? Are there additional costs, such as registration fees or promotional items?
What are the networking benefits this conference can offer?The learning benefits?
4. Do I already know some people attending this conference? Do I want to see them while I’m there, or can I see them easily under other circumstances? If I do want to see them, I should contact them ahead of time.
5. What is my focus on attending this conference? Teaching, learning, promotional, or a combination? Meeting readers? Meeting other writers? Attending workshops that will teach me something? Teaching something to other people? Hanging out with people I already know? Or some combination of these things? Plan accordingly.