A couple of weekends ago I got the opportunity to attend a Calgary writers/book conference called WHEN WORDS COLLIDE. I heard about it through the NaNoWriMo emails I still receive and I'm so glad I did because I had a great time. It's a three day conference at a very reasonable price and it features a lot of Canadian authors and small publishers. Best of all this year they had a couple of big names too: Diana Gabaldon (OUTLANDER) and Brandon Mull (FABLEHAVEN).
My eleven-year-old daughter and Brandon Mull
I'd personally never read Brandon Mull before, but I'd heard of him because my eleven year old daughter loves his Fablehaven books. She decided to come to the entire conference with me and we went to every panel/class that Brandon Mull was part of. He was by far the highlight of the conference because he was just so entertaining. All of his books at the conference sold out, and one of the booksellers told me that people were saying that they came for Diana Gabaldon but were staying for Brandon Mull.
My photo with Diana Gabaldon wouldn't attach for some reason, but you can find it on Twitter: https://pbs.twimg.com/media/CMfytcWU8AAIcyk.jpg:large
Diana was great too. I didn't attend any of her classes but I listened to her keynote address which was pretty awesome. I also got my copy of Outlander signed. Brandon Mull signed all five of my daughter's Fablehaven books, and we ended up buying two more of his books- THE CANDY SHOP WAR 1&2 and he signed those as well.
I also did my first ever live pitch to an agent, which wasn't successful, but oh well. And I had two different manuscripts in the live-action slush, both of which got picked apart by experts- but in a good way! I learned a lot.
It was a pretty awesome weekend and I'll definitely be attending next year as well. Hopefully as a panelist as well as an attendee. If you live in the Alberta area, it's definitely something to check out.