I thoroughly enjoy the long weekend each spring when the annual PIKES PEAK WRITERS CONFERENCE (PPWC) convenes in Colorado Springs. 400-500 writers travel to this mountain town to network, learn, reconnect, and rub elbows with the thoroughbreds of the writing industry. This year we were blessed with premier literary agent Donald Maass, author Kelley Armstrong, author Jodi Thomas, author Tim Dorsey, one of my favorite authors: Carol Berg, and many literary agents, editors, and publishers.
This year I felt a bit more eagerness, as I was newly appointed as the Volunteer Program Director, and one of the tasks I assigned myself prior to departing for southern Colorado was to interview attendees to determine how we, as an organization, can best serve them as writers. I learned a lot.
One of the most prominent features of my personality is administrative organization. I can look at a structure that’s in place and immediately see ways in which to tweak it to make it more efficient for everyone involved. I also enjoy making organizational charts to show the flow of responsibility, especially when I can see gaps in a current structure. Not a bad thing. I’m always amazed that the outstanding group of volunteers who currently put on such an enormous production each year can do it with seemingly only spit and elbow grease. After past conferences, I always found myself exhausted for at least a week. All that information and being ‘on stage’ for so many consecutive hours really takes it out of me. This year, being an integral part of the process, I found that yes, I was equally tired after returning home…but also quite exhilirated. How can I help it when I’ve been able to connect with an increasingly large amount of innate talent? Reconnecting with friends I haven’t seen since last conference?
Pikes Peak Writers really has its finger on the pulse of the industry, and strives to make sure the overall feel of each conference is friendly and warm. It’s a talent they have in spades. I’m incredibly honored to be a part of such a tradition and an amazing group of people.
Oh yeah, and there’s an agent who wants to take a look at Throwing Rocks at God. The buzz is that this agent only acquires work that he knows he can sell for a minimum of six figures. That’s SIX figures. Excited? You bet. Ready to work? Check. And now that my responsibilities with the government have ended, I can devote as much time as needed to prep this novel for submission to him.
Time to get to work.