As I think back on the NCWN Fall Conference, I think it was a mixture of learning the craft of writing and helping those who are ready to find agents, publishers for that book they want to get out there. Nancy Sales Cash said it seemed more of a conference for learning how to write, but to me, it seemed geared toward all serious writers who want to be published someday. I have noticed many writers get to a point where they have had something published, and then think they know all they need to know about writing. I never tire of learning and always glean something from a workshop with a good teacher.
In my newsletter from the Tennessee Mountain Writers Ms Penners asks what were you doing ten years ago with your writing. I had been a member of the NCWN for two years and I had won a first place in one poetry contest and third place in another. I had four poems in magazines and I was beside myself with joy. Before joining the NCWN I had only published one article in a newspaper and I had edited two newsletters. I had no one to share my writing and didn't know if I had written anything anyone else wanted to read. For me, having a community of writers changed my life. I decided not to settle for hiding my poems and stories away in my desk drawers and file cabinets anymore.
My first Fall Conference was in Asheville at the Grove Park Inn. I was in awe of all the accomplished writers, authors of books, and names I knew from book covers. But that event was such a special thing and a special time for me, that I knew I'd go back when I had another chance. I hope all our Netwest writers will go to big conferences when you have the opportunity. The writers I've met have been warm and giving people who share their difficulties and their successes. I think the NCWN is a terrific organization and Netwest is the most special part of it.