Last week, I was at the NINC, or Novelists, Inc. Conference in St. Petersburg, FL. Not Russia. I imagine if it had been St. Petersburg, Russia, these photos might be very different.
This was my 4th year at the conference and it didn't disappoint. But then, how could it? It's right on the beach and there are cocktails.
Okay - maybe I'm misrepresenting a bit. I learned stuff too. Or actually, mostly learned stuff. Because it was hot. July at the Equator, hot.
I love the NINC Conference. It's much smaller than most and it's authors and industry guests only. And this year NINC had an Assistant Track for Virtual or Personal Assistants - which my VA or Project Manager as she really is, was part of.
Why is this conference so different? Because it's largely about the business of being an author. Whether you're traditional, hybrid or indie - the business end of writing has fallen more and more on the author's shoulders.
Oh. and we had a circus with dogs and mermaids.
Sorry about that. We didn't have a circus with dogs and mermaids. Just wanted to make sure you were awake.
It's a different world for writers today. Thirty years ago, publishers shouldered the responsibility of putting together and marketing your book. That doesn't really happen now. Publishers want authors to come with a platform - a huge presence online with built in fans. And they want authors to do the bulk of the publicity.
Whether that's right or wrong depends on where you fall on the pyramid. But the facts are that authors have to learn the business side of...well...the business now. And that''s not easy. We used to just sit in our little writer caves and write our books. Now we have to learn a whole new set of skills.
All businesses evolve and change, And writing is no different. I always come back from this conference excited and terrified. It takes me a week to get my head together and review my notes to figure out what new things I should be doing and what I should drop.
And it'll change again - I guarantee it. But NINC prepares me for that.
As for me - I'm waiting for the invention of author cloning. Now that would be a huge help.