Thankfully, the majority of the changes are really simple and easy. It's the cleanest draft I've ever written and I'm proud of the story. I can't wait to get it sent off!
Enough about me--let's talk about the conference and me.
The morning was spent in Deborah Raney's fantastic Women's/Contemporary Fiction track. She had great writing exercises for us and covered a wide range of topics in a short time. Mom and I had to slip out in the middle to go to our first editor appointment. First, though, we went to the prayer room. After feeling discombobulated from the second critique the day before, we knew we needed some quiet time with God. Then we pitched our hearts out.
Apparently, we our pitch was too low. For the first time ever we were told it sounded like a tough sell in the CBA market. That it might be too dark. Ah, that good ol' hindsight. Could it be that we had not review our cover sheet to our proposal? That we didn't use any of the tried and true phrasings we've worked so long to perfect? That our on-the-spot delivery focused on the trouble at the beginning of the book instead of the journey that comes after it?
The editor complemented our writing style and asked for a business card. If we ever meet again, we could give her a much better feel for the story. Not a "bad" appointment, by any means. Just another new thought to keep us unbalanced.
After lunch, we both went to Professionalism and Publishing with Sue Brower, a senior acquisitions editor from Zondervan. This workshop was fun and informative. Best of all, I won a fantastic book: The Christian Writer's Manual of Style: Updated and Expanded Edition. It's crammed with great advice pertaining to the CBA market.
Mom and I split up for the next two workshops. For some reason, I couldn't convince her to attend Tax Tips: Part I & II. Truly, Danica did a fantastic job keeping us awake. Oh, and teaching us how to save money while treating our writing as a business.
Friday night was the only evening meal we had on our own. Kellie Gilbert, the president of the Oregon chapter, invited Mom and me to go out to eat with her, Cheryl, and Lindy Jacobs. Way back in the day...like in 2003...at our first OCW conference, Mom and I won a free critique from Lauraine Snelling. Guess who else won? Lindy Jacobs! It's been fun to run into each other at conferences here and there over the years. Strangely, our careers seem to be progressing at the same pace.
We dragged our friends, Ocieanna and Rebecca, along.
Dinner did not agree with Mom, so she went up to the room near the end of the Late Night Chat: I've Got a Contract, Now What? Turns out that dinner at the particular restaurant did not agree with several of people. Aw.
I hung around after the class and chatted with Camy Tang and Sue Brower again. The time difference kicked in about then...and I was off to bed.