|Stocking Stuffers for certain friends. You know who you are.
I spent last weekend attending Chicago North- RWA’s Spring Fling 2014. If you are a fiction writer and ever consider going to a conference, I highly recommend that you mark your calendar for the 2016 conference. The conference was well organized, information packed, and fun. I saw old friends, made new friends, and won a basket raffle.
|Beth Kery Books and Bath Basket. Beth Kery and her books rock!
I came home energized, and in possession of new information and ideas that I will be able to incorporate into my writing and my career. This conference is outstanding for the way it strikes a balance between business of writing sessions, and craft of writing sessions. As a writer it is so wonderful to be with people who understand the drive and desire to write. They understand your need to write stories about your imaginary friends. I had the opportunity to meet and interact with successful multi-published authors who could not have been more open, friendly, helpful, and inspiring.
Attending conferences as an individual with ADHD can be overwhelming, like locked in a Christmas Shop kind of overwhelming. Several factors contribute to this:
at / do / interact with.
2) Information overload. Attending sessions packed full of information can make your head feel like it is about to explode ala Scanners. ( If you have never seen Scanners, I only recommend it for the exploding heads.)
3) People overload. It can be overwhelming to meet new people. Trying to pay attention/ sort out/ keep track of new faces and names can make your already over-full brain, shut down and refuse to process any more new information. This is why you meet someone, and when you run into them an hour later at a different session you can not remember their name. This is the time to take advantage of the name tags everyone wears!
As a professional I have attended many conferences. Many times I would come home exhausted and frustrated rather than full and energized. My frustration would stem from knowing I had the opportunity to learn valuable information, and the potential to meet really great people, but having been overwhelmed, my brain would shut down. I would come home with a bunch of scribbled notes, and the feeling I had missed something. Over the years, I have developed a set of strategies that help me enjoy and get the most out of a conference.
1) Don’t forget to eat. It is so easy to get caught up in everything that you forget to eat. Your brain and your body need food. Make good food choices. It is fine to have some fun eating away from home but do not go crazy eating nothing but sweet sugary treats and drinking your caffeinated beverage of choice. No matter how fun it is. This goes for visits to the bar too.