A Conference Vacation

Sometimes you want to go where everybody knows your name…and sometimes you don’t.
(Yes, I totally sang that as I wrote it. *grins*)

I spent this past weekend at Georgia Romance Writers’ Moonlight and Magnolias Conference. This was my third time attending this conference, and if you haven’t been before, I recommend it. It’s a great conference with workshops, a book signing, agent and editor pitch appointments and a semi-formal awards ceremony with dancing. It’s a rocking regional conference and normally the Bad Girlz rock the fashions while there.

This trip, however, Jenna P and I decided to be “Low key.” Were there still sparkly necklaces that matched our outfits? Well, yeah. We were low key—not dead. But, we wore flat shoes and studious looks on our faces as we attended workshops. We waited until at least 2pm before we went to the hotel bar, and we’re pretty sure we were *not* the reason security was called to break up the Maggies after party.

Why the sudden change to our standard conference protocol? We needed a writer vacation.

I can’t speak for Jenna P here, although I’m sure she’ll speak the truth in the comments section, but I needed a break. I’ve spent the past year on a deadline, pushing to get 2 books written and edited. Then, the day my vacation began, I dove straight into a renovation project on my new house so that I could have a roof over my head. After a month of moving boxes, painting, and in general doing all the things that make you say, “Wow! I really need a manicure.” I was done. My house? Not so done. But, I needed to walk away, and not while wearing 6” heels.

What’s the point of this story? Sometimes you need to step away, take a break.

Whether you’re staring at blank paper, unsure which project to start next, or just worn down by real life, sometimes it’s best to take a guilt-free vacation. I attended a workshop by the awesome Tanya Michaels last year where she talked about feeding your muse. Before Moonlight and Magnolias this year, my muse was buried under piles of moving boxes. But, after soaking up the fabulous writer vibes that can only be found at a writers’ conference, now I’m excited to start my next book!  My muse has been fed!

So next time you’re stuck, try feeding your muse. I recommend a “Low key” trip to a writers’ conference like M&M. But if that’s not possible, try reading a book, going to a movie, or meeting a writer friend for coffee—trust me it helps! Sometimes writing is just as much about perspective as it is words in a story. Go write something…or don’t. But, whatever you do, live it, own it and enjoy!

Do you need a writer vacation? Where would you go?  I’d love to hear from you.

~ E. Michels

@southerntart on Twitter

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