FWA Conference Part II

Part II The sessions

Before I get into the results of the RPLA banquet, I want to mention more of the amazing sessions I attended. Each and every one was so helpful with fantastic and knowledgeable speakers.

My first session was on e-books led by Robert and Sharene Martin-Brown, publishers. I've had the privilege of hearing them speak at past conferences, and they continue to impress me with their insight. I learned a lot about how the e-book industry is in a frequent state of change and improvement, and that reaching a broader audience can be capable with e-books, especially when the author utilizes online marketing tools such as social networks and blogs. The Browns shared their insights into publishing contracts with e-books, variety in the technology available and specific ways one can self-publish their e-books if desired, and they provided information about royalty pay-outs to authors, which is often higher than print books. All in all, really good info to know.

A session led by Lynn Price, publisher, absolutely blew my socks off. She detailed the proper ways to effectively use backstory, and warned against the ways backstory has been abused. I took excessive notes in her session because my novel, Sprinter, relies heavily on backstory (specifically flashback), and I'm eager to take a fresh look using her advice. Lynn was also the keynote speaker on the last day of the conference.

An agent named Marisa Corvisiero led a session about Fantasy, Science Fiction, and Paranormal fiction. Right up my alley with Livinity! I took away a lot of good info from the agent's perspective and especially the proper way to query an agent. I've heard some of the info before, but I like to hear confirmation from multiple sources on how the "typical agent" would like to receive queries.

Though I would love to detail every session I went to, I'll simply mention one more: Eugene Orlando, publisher, led a session called "Reverse Editing." Man, oh, man did I need that session! Eugene pointed out tips for a type of editing that had never occurred to me before: start from the end and read backwards! He meant read each sentence forward, but start with the last sentence and work your way back, and he guarantees you'll find the mistakes that you may never have seen reading forward. Especially helpful when you're ready to send to an agent or publisher. Also, he showed ways to make changes to Word documents that I didn't even know were possible. Overall, extremely helpful, and one of the handouts that I know I will be keeping forever.