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Saturday, March 3, 2007

Contest & Conferences

Jim Baen Memorial Contest
Categories Accepted: SF short stories about space exploration
Maximum Word Count: 8,000
Deadline: April 9, 2007
Entry Fee: FREE
Prize: Pro rate pay & invitation to the International Space Development Conference


Had lunch with Maya Reynolds yesterday. I love visiting with her. She’s one of the most interesting people I know and a hoot to boot. She’s also well informed and stays abreast on the latest publishing news. Visit her blog any time and you’ll see what I mean.

One thing we share in common is that we each have a game plan when it comes to our writing. Each of us is very serious about writing as a business and moving to the next level as expediently as possible. She mentioned that joining the RWA was probably the single most advantageous thing she did for her career.

It didn’t start out that way. She wasn’t interested in romance writing and RWA membership fees are the highest of any organization, but what they give you for that membership more than pays for itself.

What’s unique about RWA is that it’s not a social club like so many (non-romance) organizations are. It is an organization that is dead serious about publication. --Folks, I mean DEAD SERIOUS. I’ve visited some of the chapter sites just to see what they offer and these people are not playing cutesy girl games. These are determined professionals.

I will be the first to admit I was surprised, though I shouldn’t have been. The nuts and bolts of writing and publication are the same no matter what genre you write in.

I value Maya’s opinion highly, so I may look into membership. They certainly have clout and credibility. I can try it for a year and see how it goes. This year, their major national conference meets in Dallas for the first time in twenty years. That’s gotta be an omen.

Speaking of cons:
So far I’ve got four on my list. The Writer’s League of Texas holds its conference in June. I went last year and loved it. It was definitely worth the money.

RWA is in July. I’m pretty sure I’ll go. It’s probably the mother of all cons (no pun intended) I’ve been told by many people that it’s the most awesome event they’ve ever attended.

FenCon is in September. This one is strictly SF, fantasy and horror and is always fun. Connie Willis is the guest of honor this year!

The Muse Online Conference is in October. It’s free, online and you can go naked.