Every year I look forward to September and the ACFW conference. It’s is my absolute favorite writers’ conference. Besides the wonderful workshops, continuing education classes and learning about the latest in the publishing industry, it’s like a huge family reunion. If you’re considering attending, let me offer some more reasons for attending.
You’ll meet people from the ACFW loop that you’ve only chatted with online, you can get face-to-face with your online critique buddies, meet agents, editors, have a chance to pitch that novel that you’ve worked so hard on, and rub shoulders with published authors you never dreamed you’d meet. Lifelong relationships can develop from some of those meeting.
One especially fun aspect of the conference is the awards ceremony, where our Genesis Contest and Carol Award winners are announced. It’s a great time of celebrating our friends accomplishments. In 2003, as a very green writer, I entered my first ACFW Noble Theme contest (now called the Genesis Contest) and was stunned to take first place in the historical category. The next year, I was finalist again, but placed second, beaten out by a newcomer name Mary Connealy. Little did I know, that would be my last year to be eligible to enter. At the same conference, I was stunned when the Barbour team announced they were awarding me a contract for a Heartsong Novel.
Entering contests can be both scary and exhilarating, but kudos to you who take the risk and learn from the experience. Many have done that, and many have gone on to publish. Would you believe that around 75 Genesis finalists have gone on to become published–and a number of them multi-published?
Come back tomorrow to hear some of their stories…
Vickie McDonough, Texas Boardinghouse Brides series, Texas Trails: A Morgan Family series
Noble Theme Finalist 2003 & 2004
Mutli-year BOTY/Carol Award Finalist.