Happy Monday, ladies and gents!
Less than four weeks remain until SiWC 2012 gets underway!
Have you been dithering, trying to decide if a writing conference is right for you? Looking for a reason to register, in addition to the dozens and dozens of amazing workshops, panels, and master classes, the great meals, the keynote speeches, the night owl events, the cameraderie, the inspiration, and all the other great stuff SiWC has to offer?
How about a little inspiration in the form of this lovely success story, shared with permission of its author, Christine Brant? Enjoy!
I’m writing to thank you for your amazing conference and share with you that I am a Surrey success story.
It started six years ago. There were so many ideas spinning around in my head. I wanted to write them all down, but I never took the time or put any effort into an attempt. Then I read a book by an author I really enjoyed. Her name was Kelley Armstrong. When I went to her web site, I learned she had three children and a full time job. Just like me. Finding this out was the inspiration I needed to sit down and put my ideas on paper.
I started writing my first manuscript that night. It now lives tucked under my bed.
But I finished and that was significant to me. During the time I was writing and editing, my family moved from the east coast of the United States to Seattle. After settling into life in Washington, I visited Kelley Armstrong’s website. I discovered she would be attending a conference in Surrey, Canada. Not far from our new home. I wanted to go and get one of my books signed since she had been such an inspiration to me.
My husband encouraged me to go a step further by attending the conference and entering the Storyteller’s contest.
So I wrote my first short story.
I’ll never forget the call from kc telling me I won. She asked if I was sitting down, and I’m glad I was. :)
In 2007 I attended my first Surrey International Writers Conference. I won the Storytellers Award, and I got to meet Kelley Armstrong, the author who first motivated me to write. I also met so many other incredible writers and authors. All of whom gave me incredible advice and encouragement.
Over the next five years there were moments that I wanted to quit. Times I was discouraged and my creativity felt gone. It was the friends I made at Surrey who kept me going. They gave me the boost I desperately needed, just when I needed it, and occasionally the kick in the butt to write when I would have abandoned my dreams. They made sure I didn’t give in to discouragement during those times it would have been so much easier to stop.
This past year, my very good friend and fellow conference attendee, Tyner Gillies, had his first novel published. After his novel came out, he offered to forward my first fifty pages to his editor. Within a week of receiving them, she requested my full manuscript. Two weeks later her publishing company, a small house in Canada, made me an offer. I signed a contract this summer.
None of this would have happened if not for the Surrey International Writers Conference. I am so grateful to be part of such a wonderful conference each year. I’m honored to attend and learn from more experienced authors, and fellow new writers.
Thank you Kathy, kc, and the Surrey Board for putting on a wonderful conference each year, you rock.
Thank you to the volunteers. Thank you to the presenters. Thank you to the community of writers who support and encourage each other. You are the most amazing group of people.
I am Surrey success story thanks to this amazing group of individuals.