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Algonkian Writer Conferences Hosts the Write to Market in SF Bay Area
A first person overall view of the Algonkian Writers Conference Write To Market in San Francisco's bay area.
I had the privilege of attending the Algonkian Write To Market conference from July 29-July 31, 2020 in the San Francisco Bay area hosted at the Best Western Plus in Corte Madera, CA. It was three days of 'my brain runneth over.' With approximately seventy-five first-time-author-wanna-bes in attendance, the conference began Friday morning with Michael Neff and Ann Garvin presenting.
The Algonkian Write To Market conference was the forth writers conference I've attended in the past two years. With each conference I've learned something new, however the Write To Market connected the nuts and bolts to everything I'd learned from the others. I really appreciated Michael and Ann's humorous take on serious publishing issues.
This was the only conference that began weeks before the writers arrived. Once registered, I filled out an analysis on the premise, hook, plot, execution, and more for my book. There were a couple books to read for fiction writers wanting to write short stories as a way to build their writer's platform, as well as other books read for discussion purposes. Writers were encouraged to write a log line, a 150-200 word pitch, and the back jacket cover.
During the conference, these were worked on a great deal in preparation for pitching the agents on the last day. Throughout the weekend, pitch panels were performed by writers reading their pitches to the audience of 'agents' and 'editors' who decided if they would take on the project or reject it. This was my favorite part of the conference, even though I chose to chicken out and work privately with Michael rather than be stoned to death by the group. The nice part about this though was that it gave the writer feedback to perfect their pitch before coming face to face with the real agents.
The classes began Friday and Saturday at 9:00am each day and ended at 6:00pm. Sunday began at 9:00am. From 10:00am until 12:00pm, writers pitched their work to the agents, who graciously stayed a bit longer to make sure everyone got the chance to pitch who they wanted to.
Lunch was scheduled, but no meals were included in an effort to keep the price down for the attendees. The Best Western hotel shared a parking lot with Max's. In addition, the Town Center mall was just across the street and provided even more dining choices.
I enjoyed every aspect of this conference, before and after. Michael patiently took the time to answer all of my questions. (I had a lot!) The analysis really helped me to focus on the important aspects of my story in order to write a 'salable' pitch. Of the four agents I pitched, I received one referral to another agent in their office and one asked to see more of my work. Overall, I would recommend the Algonkian conference to every first-time writer who's looking to become a published author. If you've been previously published, the Algonkian conferences will give you a refresher course on the insides of the publishing industry.