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LTUE 2014

“Use Grammarly’s plagiarism checker because a copy cat always will be declawed!”

I have been attending the LTUE fantasy and science fiction symposium for well over a decade. I attended my very first LTUE with James Dashner. We were both so new as authors, so intimidated and awed by everyone else.  A lot has happened since then, what with James becoming JAMES and me having just published my ninth novel, but I confess . . . there still is a good amount of awe to be had.

Some fun bits of advice I gleaned from my peers while speaking with them on panels and while hovering in the background of their classes as well as from my own personal experience:

  1. Never trust people you only met yesterday with embarrassing information when they will be speaking on a panel with you and will have access to the microphone *cough cough Peter Orullian!* (that might literally be the first time I’ve ever blushed)
  2. Just because you are up to date with the TV series Once Upon a Time, doesn’t mean everyone else is. Refrain from revealing spoilers, such as certain characters getting killed off, just because you have a point about how well written that particular scene was. The collective gasp of several hundred people nearly knocked me off the dais. I am sure I will receive hate mail. I am *so* sorry!
  3. A real hero makes sacrifices–Peter Orullian (who I’m quoting even though he isn’t to be trusted)
  4. Heroism has a sliding scale from little sacrifices to life altering sacrifices–Robison Wells
  5. Make sure your characters are individuals. Your twenty year old hooker will have  different speech patterns, diction, tones from your forty year old housewife.
  6. The difference between a hero and a protagonist is that the protagonist is the point of view, but the hero is the guy who gets the job done. They can be the same person, but they don’t have to be.
  7. Every novel is an act of faith–Larry Correia
  8. The most interesting character is usually the guy who has the most to lose.
  9. Making new friends is the point of conferences for writers. Hi Chad Morris! Oh, I guess hello to you too, Peter . . . 😉
  10. And connecting with old friends is like the sigh of relief that comes at the end of a very busy and stressful week. It was so good to see my dear friend Lee Modesitt. I’ve really missed that guy. I didn’t get to say hi to everyone or really talk to everyone the way I would like, but I so loved seeing you all.
  11. Sleep well before conference and plan on good sleep after conference. Do not plan on sleeping during the conference. Because if you’re sharing a hotel room with Amber Argyle and Krista Jensen, you will giggle until 4 am and end up dragging your barely warmed over corpse to the panels where you’re speaking the next morning (which might account for the lack of judgment on confessions to new friends)
  12. Jeff Savage is my hero because he uplifts everyone he comes in contact with. I wish I had that kind of personality.

The highlight of my symposium was going to lunch with Larry Correia and hearing him order a “sensuous sandwich” and then hearing him giggle like a ten year old girl. If you know Larry, you know why that’s adorable.

Kanab Writer’s Conference

I am excited to be presenting at the Kanab Writer’s Conference :

http://kanabwritersconference.com/

I’m excited for several reasons.

  1. It’s a great conference for beginning writers due to its low price and the intimate setting. ($40 bucks is a steal.) There will be lots of amazing authors to learn from who will all be teaching amazing classes!
  2. Janette Rallison, my dear friend who lives in Arizona is going to be there! YAY!
  3. Liz Adair is in charge, and she is organized and lovely and will make sure the conference runs with all kinds of awesome.
  4. I moved to Southern Utah and feel a little disconnected from all the writer friends I love so much and this is a chance to see some of them.
  5. I need my own creative well filled.
  6. I am teaching two really awesome classes!

The first class is called Frankenstein: Using all the Parts to Create Something that Breathes. It is a primer for writing and will cover: Dialogue, Emotion, Voice, Character, Setting, and Plot.

The second class is called How to Take the Suck out of Success: Making Castles out of the Bricks Life Throws. This class is about taking away the excuses and following your dreams. It’s  about not giving up. Because let’s face it, sometimes it feels like someone planted booby traps on the ladder to success. Sometimes it sucks. This class will teach how to eliminate some of those pesky traps and ticking time bombs so that success can be a little easier.

I am SUPER excited for this. And with the whole government shut-down (because we’ve apparently sent a bunch of non communicating infants to Washington) Kanab could really use the tourist dollars. The businesses there have suffered a huge loss by the non-existent tourism from the national parks. Since I spent fifteen years running a business that only did well during the tourist season, I feel a great deal of empathy for their plight.

So sign up now! I promise we’ll have fun. And if you want to read about Kanab and their issues with the government shut down, here is a news article:

http://www.kcsg.com/view/full_story/23793695/article-Kanab-Writer-s-Conference-Taking-Place-Oct–25-26-Despite-Gov–Closures?instance=more_local_news1