A unique blog dedicated to covering the worlds of book publishing and the news media, revealing creative ideas, practical strategies, interesting stories, and provocative opinions. Free speech, literacy, and great books are also discussed. Along the way, discover savvy but entertaining insights on book marketing, public relations, branding, and advertising from a veteran of two decades in the industry of book publishing publicity and marketing.
Friday, June 14, 2019
Great Stories Can Be Found at Writers Conferences
you want to hear some wild stories, attend a writer’s conference. Attendees not only are capable of spinning
good yarns that their books emanate from, but they may have unusual takes on
life, odd experiences, and imaginative ways of viewing the world. I was reminded of this when I participated in
the Philadelphia Writers Conference this past weekend.
took the day off from work to hop on an Amtrak train, New Rochelle, NY to
Philadelphia. Some two and a half hours
later I arrived and walked from 30th Street Station down to 4th
Street and one avenue over, to Arch.
have been to the city of Brotherly Love many times. When you live in New York you tend to hit
cities like Philadelphia, Boston, and DC numerous times in your life. It seems like so much of our nation’s
founding history and politics come from those three places – and New York. You
get reminded of the Colonial Days and the era of Ben Franklin as soon as you
step foot onto this city.
conference has been going on for 71 years, but this was the first time I
attended. The company I work for, MEDIA
CONNECT, advertised its services as the leader in book publicity by sponsoring
the event. Our fliers were made
available to attendees and I manned a table for three hours, ready to answer
the questions of eager participants.
was stationed to absorb an incoming barrage of wild stories from people who had such unique experiences that often served as inspiration for their
writings. One woman lived all over the
world and had heartbreak when dating a bipolar alcoholic. Another guy was a poet who shared some of his
life with me. Another person relayed how
she is transgender, going from male to female.
Each one told me things with such passion and conviction. To be a writer you must be a good researcher,
have rich experiences worth writing about, and have a wonderful imagination,
but the key is to be able to tell a good story and captivate people.
would some of these people be without their writing? Dead, perhaps. Addicted, surely. In therapy?
Probably there already. Writers
sacrifice their lives for writing— not just their time or money but their souls
and their hearts. It is how they make
sense of things and justify whatever bad experiences that may have injured
them. Their writing is an outlet, a path to redemption, a lottery ticket for fame, and a way to validate their sense of
love writers. They are my people. They observe, feel, think, imagine, analyze,
and visualize a better world. They help us
live our current lives while giving us a peek into the lives we may never get
to live or know from. Writers live for
us. They take the blows that life deals
us and puts them into a neatly packaged book that leads us on an inescapable
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