When I am published, I want to be like the authors I admire and like many of the authors I met at the 2011 RWA Conference in New York City. Here are the qualities I admire in the authors I want to be like when I am published:
These authors also want to share how to get through the publishing door. They want to give advice about how to get published. They aren't afraid of the competition. They welcome more people at the table. They believe there is room for everyone. They want to see you succeed. They want to help you attain your dream goal.
How did these authors show me these qualities? By speaking at the luncheons, by giving inspiring thank you speeches, and by teaching workshops. They also shared their love of writing, craft, and storytelling during random meetings. I met several authors during the literacy signing, the luncheons, and in the workshops who eagerly shared information with me about the craft, the industry, the genres, and their experiences. They even offered to help me by reading my pages, by answering my questions via email.
Authors were once writers struggling to get published. They know how hard it is to beat down that door. They get where we unpublished writers are sitting, and they want us to succeed. While I was at the conference I met many generous authors who took the time to encourage me.
And that is why going to a conference is money well-spent. You learn who you want to be like when you cross over to the published world. Keep these qualities in mind if you aren't published. Write them down. Live them now. Pay it forward when you reach your dream.