It’s today! SiWC registration opens today!

I start hyperventilating on this day each year. At least I do on the years I’m able to attend the Surrey International Writers’ Conference, and this is one of those years. I’ve been attending since 2004 and always come home filled with renewed energy for my writing, reams of notes from the workshops, lots of new friends, and usually a few extra pounds from the great food. My suitcase weighs more on the homeward trip, too, since I can never resist the many booths of books and writing-related goodies. And then there’s that magnificent silent auction!

Both speakers and attendees will tell you it is one of the top conferences in North America. Each year I claim it’s the best year, but 2010 was particularly sweet. I attended with my daughter, Shari Green, and had the joy of seeing her presented with a cheque for winning First Place in the ‘Writing for Young People’ category of the annual writing contest.

When agent Don Maass was unable to attend that year due to a conflict of dates, my scheduled appointment with him was transferred to his replacement, author James Scott Bell, and I had The. Best. Ever. discussion with him! It actually changed my thinking about my choice of genre.

Every year I learn so much and come away inspired to write better, reach higher and try harder. My writerly soul is always nourished. Chicken soup can’t compete with the SiWC!

So, come twelve o’clock Pacific Time today when registration opens, I’ll be among the first in line. This is the conference’s twentieth anniversary year, and I know it’s going to be something really special. I wouldn’t miss it for anything!

In the meantime, does anyone have a paper bag handy? I have to get my breathing under control before noon.

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Have you attended conferences in your profession? What would you say is the greatest benefit gained?

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14 thoughts on “It’s today! SiWC registration opens today!

  1. Is the anticipation painfully wonderful?!

  2. Shari Green says:

    Hey, I’m famous, LOL. 2010 conference really was awesome in many ways (JSB’s master class rocked!), but boyohboy it’s almost noon and I’m just as excited as you about registering for 2012. It’ll seem so REAL after we register! ;)

    • Congratulations on winning Shari! Hope to meet you and your mom this year.

    • Carol says:

      And we’ve done it! Now all that’s left is to browse through the list of workshops and figure out how to clone ourselves so we can attend everything. Oh, and get manuscripts and contest entries polished up. Nineteen weeks and counting.

  3. Goodness, is it that time of year already. I’m happy to say that the Rural Writers rescheduled their retreat to a month earlier so it doesn’t coincide with the Surrey conference. But it’s not looking good for me for either one. Darn.

  4. You are so right, SiWC is the best. I have attended a number of times and have always come away with great ideas and so inspired. 4 years ago I met Meg Tilley who read the first three pages of Amanda in Arabia, gave me a few useful tips and said it was great and that I should not give up on it. A year later the book was published. I will always be grateful. Maybe we will see each other there this fall.

  5. Carol says:

    I’ll undoubtedly be sharing my anticipation again as the next 19 weeks go by. Thanks to all of you for your comments. Darlene, we’ll make a point of meeting there. And Joylene, I thought after last year’s comments you’d be going for sure this year. I hope you find a way after all. We’d have a blast!!

  6. Have a great time at the conference, Carol. Report back with lots of photos :)

  7. Camille says:

    We are so glad you get so much out of your time with us, Carol! We are truly working hard to make this yes, our 20th, the best ever!
    Camille
    SiWC Chair, 2012

  8. Carol says:

    I’ll have my camera on hand for sure, Florence. The problem will be deciding which photos to use and which ones to lose. LOL.

    Thanks for dropping in here, Camille. Welcome! The planning team always does a super job, so I don’t doubt this year’s conference will be extra special.

  9. This made me smile big! Weighing hands back and forth–Donald, James, Donald, James. So very cool. I love the face-to-face contacts and the hugs. Yes, the hugs. :)

    • Carol says:

      Those face-to-face encounters with people who have previously been only names online are very special. And hugs are good, too.

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