Monday, June 6, 2011

Utah Festival of Books

Last Saturday was the Festival of Books at Brigham Young University. Such fun times.

I was really impressed with all that they had going on. They had kid activities, teen activities, crafts, music, and of course, books. I learned how to make an easy homemade book, how to crochet a flower clip, and how my name calligraphied onto a bookmark.  So much fun!

But, this is a book blog so lets talk books! I went to a panel called, "The Business of Writing and Publishing." The authors on the panel were (left to right): Rich Walton, Lisa Mangum, Brandon Mull, Kristen Randle, Tracy Hickman, and Laura Hickman.
The question was asked, "what is your advice so to writers." I was interested in their answers, so I took note. Here it is now, for you:

Laura: write every day and don't give up. Read the books you want to sound like.
Lisa: Don't equate success with getting published. Find your voice. Never stop writing.
Brandon: Write what your passionate about.
Kristen: Read (but stay away from the covers with ladies legs on them). Rewrite. Keep a journal because you can't create a character if you don't know yourself.
Tracy: Write when you least want to write. It takes ten years of work to become an overnight success. Remember that you have not yet written your best work.
Rick: Give up. Unless you can't, then do the work. If you really want to be published and do the work, it will happen. Writing is a lot of hard work, it's a lot of fun, and it's very rewarding. You can do it.

They said a lot more, but that was all I wrote down. Laura did say that once she had some art on display and told her friend she was mortified to have people see it. Her friend answered, "Art is mortification. Let it go." I thought that was pretty cool. It was very interesting panel and extremely motivating.

I went to another panel in the afternoon called, "Women's Author's Panel." Nice name that described what it was: a panel with women authors. They were (from left to right): Ann Cannon, Ann Dee Ellis, Kiersten White, Jessica Day George, and Aprilynne Pike.

It was a great panel. Really funny ladies. I enjoyed it. One of the questions was, "what was the worst advice you have been given.
Aprilynne: Why not send your manuscripts to editors? That's what a slush pile is for."
Jessica: Can't read other books while writing one of your own. If so, your words will sound like another author and that is plagerism.
Kristen: Write to the market or the next hot thing
Kiersten: more generally, using another's writing process or any specific advice about how to write or what to write.
Dee Ann: also more generally, letting someone tell you what to write, because you have to find it.

The last thing we did was listen to Elana Johnson, author of Possession, speak for ten minutes.
Have you ever listened to an author and really liked what they had to say and that made you want to read their book when before you hadn't really thought about it? That was the effect of Elana's (very short) presentation. She talked about the 3 P's: having Patience with the artistic process and discovering your own talents. Perservering, especially when a bunch of people tell you, 'no.' And creating a Product others will want. Then the lone L, when these things come together, there is Luck.

They had this wall where everyone could write their favorite book. I loved it.

And here is the end. I love books and bookish people.

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