LDS Storymakers was a two-day event that I nauseating talked about for the last few months. Out of the three conferences I attended in the last year, it was definitely the best. Let me give you a rundown of the events:

Bootcamp: I paid extra to do a two-day, morning bootcamp session. And let me tell you, whoever you are, that it was awesome. I am very willing to pay that again. My table’s writing guru (or whatever they were called) was Kirk Shaw, senior editor of Covenant. He was very awesome to have as the guru (or whatever). The rest of my group was Tamara, Graham, Deirdra, and Julie. I have to say, each of them are more talented than me at writing. Tamara actually has a new book coming out from a small press publisher. Graham had been at the conference before and seemed to know everyone. Deirdra has finished two separate books that seem to fit in a series and ended up with a manuscript request from one of her pitch sessions. And one of Julie’s entries in the young adult category won that category. So congrats to her. My manuscript got a little ripped apart. And oddly enough, it didn’t hurt. I learned that my story is good, but my ‘craft’ needs to be honed a lot.

There were four breakout sessions on day one. It was a difficult process deciding which ones to attend.

#1: Laura Rennert, a senior agent at Andrea Brown Lit, did an awesome presentation about query letters and pitches. I thought that it’d help a little to attend this class. Well, I was wrong. It helped a lot. I really want to redo a lot of stuff for my book and try to send it to her.

#2: Aprilynne Pike, author of NY Times Bestseller Wings, did a presentation on fantasy in the YA (Young Adult, if you don’t know) market. She’s a great presenter because she’s got the right amount of energy along with a great presentation.

In between the second and third sessions, I bought Dan Wells’ I Am Not a Serial Killer, which I can’t wait to read (after the other two books that I’m trying to read right now.)

#3: J. Scott Savage is in my top 3 favorite all-time presenters. I mean, the man is awesome. He did a presentation on writing villains. Like Aprilynne, he’s got enough humor mixed with knowledge mixed with energy that makes him awesome. I was too intrigued by his presentation that I forgot to take notes. Oh well, I’ll just email him to get them (hopefully he’ll hold up to his promise).

#4: I was originally going to go to a different presentation. I acutally wish I did. I went to someone else’s presentation and checked out early. Which was fine. I needed to get out and stretch my legs after all the sitting.

Keynote: David Wolverton is awesome. The man has written under both David Wolverton and David Farland. Sadly, I’ve never read any of his books, but I intend to. There’s just so much for me to read right now. He gave so much insight. Ending day one with his insightful words made me want to go out and write.

Throughout the day, I got the privilege of meeting Heather Moore, Annette Lyon, and many more people. Mary also got Rachel Ann Nunes’ signature on one of her books as well as purchasing a Janette Rallison book and getting it signed. Most importantly, I got to get James Dashner’s signature in his second 13th Reality book. I also got to meet aspiring authors Gail and Debbie, who were from Colorado during our dinner before getting a headache from sitting far too close to the speakers during Shaun Burrows mini-concert. We ended up buying two of his cds as well.

More from LDStorymakers in my next post. Until then:

Alien abductions are involuntary, but probings are scheduled.


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