Monday, March 23, 2015

Hungry, hungry authors

Image Courtesy: WikiCommons
I'm in historic Charleston, South Carolina attending the PubSense Summit and, as always, I spent a good part of my afternoon yesterday, sitting quietly taking it all in. People-watching. You can learn so much about where people are, where they're going, what they hope to accomplish just from sitting quietly and absorbing your surrounds. The hotel has a Starbucks in the lobby so after picking up my grande soy Oprah Chai Tea latte and an egg and cheese sandwich, I went upstairs to the mezzanine and sat down to enjoy my vittles. It was my only moment of anonymity and I cherished it as much as I cherished my Starbucks semi-healthy meal. I watched people move from one panel to another, talking about their projects, what they were working on next and talking to the panelists who had just finished their session. It was a great way to get to know the people in attendance and sort of prepare myself for the panel I would be on shortly.

Image Courtesy: WikiCommons
Authors come in all shapes and sizes, from all walks of life but what they all share is a love and passion for their writing. I noticed that the ones who were most successful in carrying conversations, were the ones who directed the passion they have on their work to the industry as a whole. The ones whose eyes light up at the mention of something new or changing in the industry. The hungry ones. They didn't just look for other authors to talk to, they approached panelists from the industry and sought out information about the landscape and waters they were currently navigating. They approached the panelists with questions about the industry rather than about how they were going to succeed in said industry. These are the hungry authors. The ones who don't wait for someone to come feed them but who go out and forage for their best eats. They are the voracious readers of books about everything from the genre they're writing in to industry newsletters.

Sitting there for just a few minutes, eating my semi-edible egg and cheese sandwich, I saw them all and was excited to see them in the audience during my panel. They were hopefully fed by some of the information we provided but I wasn't worried about them, I knew they'd eat their fill while in attendance.