Mick Jagger Sang It Best!

When I went to Pikes Peak Writers Conference I had the highest hopes of attaining inspiration to write. I had, to be quite honest, the feeling of that cold dark notion of ‘writer’s block’ over me. I wasn’t producing anything and I just knew the conference would help me come out of this rut but I came home not really feeling all that excited to write. I’m not saying I wasn’t excited. Oh I was indeed in seventh heaven for so many reasons. However I wasn’t really feeling that ‘carpal tunnel syndrome’ feeling if you get my drift. LOL

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Chuck Wendig and Me!!!

I had met some fantastic people. OMG. I met my most favorite writer, Chuck Wendig of Terribleminds. I tried my absolute best not to walk that ‘stalker’ line. I got to get my books autographed. He even predicted my ‘demise’ Hehe! I got to sit at his table during one of the banquets. He even stopped and talked to me in the hall on various occasions. I felt honored! You must understand! This man is someone I’ve been following, learning the writing craft from, and studying. I consider him a mentor. I am not just a fan but a student. So to get to meet him meant the world to me. And to be treated like an equal was…well, as I said, an honor, and I am humbled. Listening to his keynote speech was inspiring in itself. Not to go out and write, but to persevere. Thanks to him, I came home understanding it wasn’t writer’s block. Thank you Chuck. 🙂

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Hank Phillippi Ryan

I got to meet Hank Phillippi Ryan. That remarkable woman’s very presence just made my mouth drop! The experience made me nearly faint! Watching her during the read and critique was fascinating. Watching her in action, listening to her speak….let’s just say…when I grow up, I want to be just like her! Wowza!!! She is so poised, professional, and just super stardom. I mean, there are just no words to express what is was like being around her. At one point, I was walking and I had asked the person beside me where the book signing was being held *with her book in my hand* and I unknowingly asked HER and she smiled and stated that it was the highest praise for that to happen in such a way, unknowingly for the two of us to run into each other like that.

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JIm C. Hines

I also had the honor of sitting down a number of times and speaking with Jim C. Hines. This man is so creative. I tell you what, if I was a brain surgeon, that is one head I would LOVE to crack open and take a look at because there is some wicked cool stuff happening inside it. He is a fantastic man, and this is coming from just having sat down for a just a little while with. I’m sure if I had more time….well, you might just hear on the news that of a case of body snatching (blame it on aliens because there is some intelligent life going on inside that man). He is certainly a couple generations ahead of the times.

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Gail Carriger

Gail Carriger is a beautiful soul. She had me in tears through her keynote speech. And I was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to sit down with her the next day and have a gut level conversation with her. Life resonates within her, showing her passion and sincerity. It is no wonder creativity resonates through her veins and she continues to write best sellers. I pray that she continues to have success and she finds answers she seeks, and that beauty comes to her through characters, through love, and through life forever.

There were so many names, so many people that I can’t list them all. YOU ALL KNOW WHO YOU ARE. I consider them all friends now.  I went into this conference hoping for the inspiration to go home to write. To want to write rigorously. That wasn’t so. Instead, I took home with me the experience of a lifetime. Education and knowledge from professionals. My eyes were opened in ways I’d not expected to happen. I see my writing the way agents and editors look at it. I also have a lot of new friendships.

And I reached a new milestone in my life. I pitched one of my novels. I pitched my fantasy novel series to Del Ray Spectra and they requested to del raysee more! What a huge success that was!!! My first ever pitch and they want to see more. WOW! I am a realist but also an optimist. I may not make it all the way through the publishing process. They may look at the book and opt to not take it. However, to even be considered it a HUGE success, an honor that I take and in such an early stage in my writing career, I can say I am just truly, truly grateful to even be considered. I am humbled and in awe. Many many thanks for just reaching this point in my life.

I walked into that pitch workshop, completely overwhelmed and walked out totally numbed and truly disheartened and certain of failure. But I took what information I was given, studied, practiced, and worked like crazy. And two days later gave my pitch. And had success! 🙂

Cheers!

Michala

 

Conferencing and Pitching (Day 1)

Hello You Wonderful Peeps!

Intense Writing Here

Intense Writing Here

 

 

I’ve had…or, well, am having the incredible honor of attending the 2014 Pikes Peak Writer’s Conference in Colorado Springs and I must say WOW! These last two days have been spectacular. The conference brings a wealth of information, a remarkable list of professional names with the skills of the trade, and an all-around camaraderie any writer could ever hope to experience. First, I must say I may be a bit anal because I made me a creative ‘memory’ journal. I printed the material from the conference, cut, and pasted it into the book. Throughout my time here, I’ve been getting autographs of those I’ve met and spoken with and of course I’ve logged my workshop notes in it, as well as journaling my personal thoughts and feelings. (I’ve gotten lots of great comments on it so I don’t feel so silly having done so.)

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lindaThursday, April 23rd, was the Prequel. I hadn’t intended on going, having accidentally signed up for it, but you know what, sometimes these things are meant to be. One of my workshops was led by Linda Rorhbough  and was titled: Pitch Perfect: 3 Steps to Getting Their Attention. May I first say this lady knows her stuff! Man, oh, man. I took this class because I am pitching for the very first time and I felt it was necessary information. And it certainly was. I realized how completely unprepared I was. LOL Though I left the class having gained a new understanding of ‘pitching’ I also left feeling deflated and uncertain about whether I should even attempt my pitch this year. I most definitely had my work cut out for me and had an inclination I wouldn’t be going to bed at a decent hour that night.

I was right. I stayed up until about 2 a.m. working on my pitch. I labored intensely over it, taking careful consideration all what I’d learned in Linda’s workshop. I’m telling you, this woman is brilliant! Her formula is so clear, so concise, and if you work it, it will work for you. Just a few things, and really, these are things I (and you) probably know but need to be reminded of. Then there are things you probably don’t know as well.

  1. Get out of your comfort zone. Linda said, “Nothing can change when you’re comfortable.” How true!
  2. She shared the basic elements of a log line. She even went so far as to suggest having a second log line.
  3. She shared what not to do during a pitch. One was “Don’t compliment your work.”

You should definitely visit her website. Even better, support her by buying her book, The Prophetess One: At Risk.

Overall, I would rate this workshop a solid 10/10 because she made me think, put me to work, and taught me a lot. And then gave me resources to continue my learning journey through her website. (Just go to articles and eat your heart out!)

(Reprinted from Pikes Peak Blog Writing from the Peak )

Linda Rohrbough has been writing since 1989, and has more than 5,000 articles and seven books to her credit along with national awards for her fiction and non-fiction. New York Times #1 bestselling author Debbie Macomber said about Linda’s new novel: “This is fast-paced, thrilling, edge-of-the-seat reading. The Prophetess One: At Risk had me flipping the pages and holding my breath.” The Prophetess One: At Risk has garnered three national awards: the 2012 International Book Award, the 2011 Global eBook Award, and the 2011 Millennium Star Publishing Award. An iPhone App of her popular “Pitch Your Book” workshop is available in the Apple iTunes store. Visit her website!

There is more to come. So stay tuned!

Cheers,

Michala