ESW at DFW (con, that is. DFWcon. DFW Writer’s Conference. Come on, guys!)

DFW Writer's Conference
E.S. Wesley
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E.S. Wesley

E.S. Wesley is a serial (or cereal) writer, mentor, and dabbler in whatever other creative endeavors tickle his fancy. He likes to write books with complicated plots and stuff.
E.S. Wesley
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DFW Writer’s Conference, #dfwcon

Hey everyone! Just thought I’d pop in and give a little report on how things went this last weekend. A lot of you know that I was heading down to the DFW Writer’s Conference this weekend to do all the writerly things that we writers do at writers conferences (like see how poorly we can construct a sentence in order to pass it by agents).

Just so you know, the DFW Writer’s Conference was pretty sweet this year. Great speakers (including the lovely and hysterical southern belle Charlaine Harris and the über-productive and ever-awesome Kevin J. Anderson), great agents and editors and fan-freaking-tastic authors. Seriously, if you live in the DFW area and didn’t drop in on the DFWCon fun, you really, REALLY missed out.

Events like this are a must for writers, and now that I’m walking around with more cultured eyes, I can really see value in everything that happens at a conference like that. At DFWCon I made great connections with authors I’d met only briefly, and some authors I’d never met before. I got to hear some great sessions that really challenged my thinking on narrative voice and villains. And, best part–I got to meet some amazing agents and editors.

A word of advice: when you’re meeting agents and editors at a conference like DFWCon, don’t just make it all about yourself. Be courteous … it goes a long way. And, here’s an idea–talk to agents who aren’t even repping your genre. Obviously don’t just pitch to them, but get to know them. Treat them like the honored guests they are. Sometimes it’s nice to have people want to talk to you just because they want to talk to you, and not because they want you to listen-to-my-pitch-please-and-hear-every-word-and-sign-me-oh-please-oh-please-oh-please.

On that note, I loved the agents and editors I got to talk to this weekend. Had some great conversation with the hilarious Michelle Johnson at Inklings, and a fun pitch session with the indomitable Thao Le. Allison Devereaux was so nice, too, even though she’s nowhere near my genre. And I absolutely LOVED gabbing about the state of sci-fi with Susan Chang (you’re totally the best). And all the other agents, too, those I got to talk to and those I didn’t … so glad I got to benefit from your presence!

Oh, and I can’t forget amazing authors like Julie Murphy (author of SIDE EFFECTS MAY VARY and the upcoming DUMPLIN), Natalie C. Parker (author of the amazing BEWARE THE WILD), and Jenny Martin (author of TRACKED). Both of them were super helpful in workshops, and just generally amazing people to talk to!

That said, if you’re a writer, you definitely NEED to go to conferences like the DFW Writer’s Conference. If you’re not, tell the writers in your life that they need to go to conferences, instead. DFWCon is a great choice. Can’t wait till next year!

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