Context 26: A Convention for Writers

This past weekend a good friend of mine and I took a road trip to Worthington, Ohio and joined many others at the writing convention Context 26.  This was my third time going to this particular convention, and as always, I learned a lot, met great people, and had a wonderful time.

This year I took some writing workshops that I hope will help with certain areas I’ve been having problems in. The shops included topics like self editing and diagnostics, world building, getting the science right, and warfare for writers. I took a daunting amount of notes and look forward to going through them and typing them up in a digital file. That way I can share them with others, and I might even put some of the information on this blog. Look for that information in the near future.

Panels (a free one hour presentation) were also available. I only had time to attend one this year, but the one I did attend was really great. How to get rejected. Yup.  That’s right. This presenter told us what sort of things will get a story or novel rejected. I found it an enlightening presentation and I look forward to NOT doing all the things he told us to do. I have notes from that panel too and will look at making a blog post from that soon as well.

Along with doing workshops and a panel, I met many new people and some I knew from my previous trips. It’s always fun to be around other writers. There’s no other feeling like being able to connect with others that share my passion of writing. Some of the nicest people I know are writers and that’s never more evident than going to a place that’s saturated with them. And of course chatting with editors and publishers, that’s always a plus. It’s good to see them as people too, and to make connections that might lead to possible prospects.

And then there are the parties. These are usually put on by publishers. There were two of them this year. It’s great fun to be had by all. A time to unwind and makes friends and maybe even get a little silly.

I look forward to going again next year and may try a few others in the spring. I find that the effort and money spent to go to conventions is a boon to my writing and efforts to network with those in writing. It’s something I will try to plan for every year and I believe that anyone who is serious about writing (no matter what stage of writing) should make the effort to do.

What conventions or writing workshops do you attend?

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