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Monday, June 10, 2013

ConCarolinas 2013 Writer's Panels

I only attended ConCarolinas on Saturday. Between visiting, interviewing and preventing Baaart and his "friend" from bringing on the apocalypse (that is a whole other post!) I only sat in on two panels, but they were good ones! Here are some of the highlights.

Sat. 4:00 First Five Pages: A Magical Words Seminar 

This was interesting panel about what should and shouldn't be included in the first five pages of your manuscript with 3 authors from the Magical Words blog: Faith Hunter, David B. Coe and Misty Massey.
These three authors love to help aspiring writers and obviously enjoy working together on a panel. Here are some highlights.

* Faith thinks the first 5 pages is what gets you published. David thinks publishers are looking for potential in the first 5 pages. (there might have been some stink eyeing going on over this <G>)

*Editors are looking for a reason to trash your manuscript. They just don't have time. Writers can't depend on luck anymore.

*Faith: openings need a bait and hook, an event that will prove pivotal later on. You need an event on the first page. In a mystery you would want a dead body.
David: story should begin where is begins to lead into the climatic event. (Faith mentions that David's Thieftaker is the book of the decade)

*David: wants readers to know his character isn't anyone to mess with and has you rooting for him.

*Faith: first 5 pages need to be unique and exciting. Faith learned to write analytically. She would read books and underline/comment in margins what worked and didn't in the books she read. She suggests reading the first 5 pages of many books and figure out what worked or didn't.

*You should work on your next big thing while waiting for responses to submitted work. 

Sat. 5:30 Writer Beware! 
Hosted by David Coe, John Hartness, Aaron Rosenberg, Edmund Schubert, James Tuck and Faith Hunter.

This was a brilliant and colorful panel <G>. Everyone laughed and learned from the mistakes of authors who have been there, done that.
* Agents are the most common place writers get taken advantage of.

*Sites all writers should visit:
Preditors and Editors, The Passive Voice, Kris Writes, Kboards (writers Cafe)

*Writer mistakes:
-angsting over what to write next instead of writing.
-READ YOUR CONTRACTS!! Contacts are negotiable, boiler plate contracts (standard)
- if an editor says change this, change it! (John)
-do your research in the industry, know how it works (John)
-filter the advice you get. People's advice is based on their career and it might not be right for you.
-don't put too much on your plate. You have to ask yourself how much of your life are you willing to give up. Know your limits, don't say yes immediately to publishers. You must know your daily, weekly, comfort and top speeds.
-publishing is a s-l-o-w business.
-pay attention to foreign rights clauses (Tuck)
-narrow the option clauses as much as possible. Don't leave loop holes. Be willing to walk away.

ConCarolinas, authors, photo, Hartness, Hunter, Rosenberg
Aaron Rosenberg, David Coe, John Hartness

ConCarolinas, writer's panel, authors, photo, Schubert, Hunter, Tuck
Edmund Schubert, Faith Hunter, James Tuck

Here were the writers panels offered this year. You can see all the other panels here.
Fri 03:00 pm Politics in Writing Fri 04:00 pm Writer's Reception
Fri 04:30 pm Creating the Truly Alien Harris
Fri 06:00 pm Tech vs Magic
Fri 06:00 pm Turning Good Ideas into Great Stories
Fri 06:00 pm The Trap of Tropes
Fri 07:30 pm The Book Cover Welwyn
Fri 07:30 pm Choosing the Right Words - A Magical Words Seminar
Fri 07:30 pm Setting the Scene
Fri 09:00 pm Writing the Other
Fri 10:30 pm John Hartness Launch Party
Fri 11:30 pm The Undead as Characters
Fri 11:30 pm The Villain as Protagonist

Sat 09:00 am Books and Breakfast Sat 10:00 am Timothy Zahn
Sat 10:00 am Anthologies
Sat 10:00 am Self-Publishing: Pros and Cons
Sat 11:30 am Character Costumes and Accessories
Sat 11:30 am Walking in Someone Else's Shoes
Sat 12:00 pm Writer's Workshop
Sat 01:00 pm Getting Over Yourself
Sat 01:00 pm The Adult Appeal of YA Literature
Sat 02:30 pm The Un-Fair Folk
Sat 02:30 pm The Entourage
Sat 04:00 pm First Five Pages: A Magical Words Seminar
Sat 04:00 pm The Villain as Protagonist
Sat 05:30 pm Writer Beware!
Sat 05:30 pm Clearing the Block
Sat 07:00 pm The Art of War
Sat 08:00 pm Finding Your Voice: A Magical Words Seminar
Sat 08:30 pm My Hero
Sat 10:00 pm Bloodsucking Fiends
Sat 10:00 pm My Heroine
Sat 10:30 pm Literate Liquors Executive Boardroom
Sat 11:30 pm Making Monsters Scary Again
Sat 11:30 pm Time For a Little Sex

Sun 09:30 am Baen Traveling Road Show Sun 10:00 am Writer's Workshop
Sun 10:00 am Gods and Goddesses
Sun 10:30 am Timothy Zahn
Sun 11:30 am Self-Publishing: Pros and Cons
Sun 11:30 am Editors and Agents
Sun 01:00 pm The Future of Print
Sun 01:00 pm Maintaining a Large Cast
Sun 02:30 pm Saying Goodbye
Sun 02:30 pm A Satisfying Ending

-Sharon Stogner


  1. These writers panels are SO informative for readers and aspiring authors alike. I hope everyone gets a chance to check these out. Really a lot of knowledge to pick up. :)

  2. I have read David B. Coe's books, those that are translated into Dutch, so many years ago already. Amarinth series, loved them. And Faith Hunter, lonely women between big men, I still need to start reading her books, though they are on my shelves.