Tuesday, March 8, 2011
Seeking: A New Kind of Conference
After attending a blogging conference a couple of months ago and feeling let down as a result, I was pretty sure the only conferences in my future would be related to social work. I left that experience ready to focus on writing, both on the blog and off. That was the end of that.
However, I kept hearing from people about She Speaks and this made me curious. I have no interest in speaking so when I went to the site, I just sought to learn about what my friends had experienced. I read how She Speaks helps attendees "receive the tools and the confidence to answer God’s call on your life." This resonated because I've started to think that social work is no longer what I'm meant to do.
This bold claim stirred my heart: "She Speaks is not just another conference … it is a true experience with God and a revival in your calling."
And then I saw the She Writes tab and my heart began to beat a little faster.
Because I don't want to write just any book. I want to write the kind of Christian fiction that I want to read. Something that speaks to my generation, something with characters who look like me and my friends. I started writing a fiction book last year, then put it aside when I moved. I picked it back up a month ago. I'm not in a place where I can write full-time but I am allowing myself to believe that my crazy dreams may not be that crazy after all.
The She Writes portion of this conference will help me hone my voice and better understand the world of publishing. Plus, there's an option to join a peer critique group, as well as meet with publishers. Knowing that I'm headed to a conference where I could meet with a publisher that would like to publish me would ensure that I keep writing. Could I have my book written by July? The mere idea makes me giddy!
Everything I read on the She Speaks website made me feel that this was the conference I'd been waiting for.
Only, my budget has had to change the last couple of months for a few reasons. It's changed for mostly good reasons but even good reasons lead to a tighter belt. Which means there's less to spare for conferences, even worthy ones like She Speaks. I've been praying about it and trying to figure out whether I can scrimp and save my way there.
Then I learned that two scholarships are being offered. With this post, I'm putting my hat in the ring. I'm declaring my hope that I'll be able to go to She Speaks, by either winning the scholarship or a God-sized "coincidence."
Either way, I'm going to keep writing. I can no longer not write. I don't know what God will do with this but maybe this is another chance to live expectantly. So that's what I'm choosing to do.
Have you ever gone to She Speaks? Are you planning to go this year?