Whitney Jacoby

Be Audacious

Jamie Cat Callan, author of Ooh La La!:: French Women’s Secrets to Feeling Beautiful Every Day, presented at my conference yesterday and one of her pieces of advice summarized the entire event for me:

“Be audacious. Even if it seems crazy, ask for what you want!”

All I knew was that I wanted to host a conference to promote talented writers and motivate aspiring writers. I didn’t know where it should be, who should speak, and what message I was trying to share. I started with a simple question “will you join me?” and one by one I amassed a panel of eight amazing speakers.

me at conference

Yesterday I was blown away by the level of insight the speakers had. Each presentation was unique and the speakers shared their personality as well as their knowledge. Looking out at the audience, I was touched to see over 40 strangers eagerly taking notes the entire time. During the social hour, so many audience members came up to me and said they couldn’t wait to go home and write (exactly what I wanted to hear).

The audience members taking their seats.

The audience members taking their seats.

I can’t tell you how many times I told people I was hosting a writers’ conference and they gave me a look like I was crazy. After all, who am I? I don’t have the backing of a credible publishing house, I don’t have thousands of dollars from sponsors, I don’t have 100,000 followers on Twitter. Who am I? I’m audacious 🙂 and it worked!

If you have a dream, start doing whatever it takes to make it happen. It might not look like how you envisioned it, but remember you are just taking the first step and that’s what will make the next step possible. Waiting around for someone to give you permission to do something is a waste of time, and it probably won’t ever happen.

Now I know that I can do this, I’m looking to expand. I would like to host the next conference in 6 months. Here’s how you can help me:

  • If you know of potential sponsors who would like to be associated with a conference that’s inspiring and motivating, one that promotes working hard for what you want, please put me in touch with them!
  • If you know engaging, approachable and inspiring speakers who are in some way connected to the writing world (publishers, agents, writers, freelancers, or something totally crazy that I can’t come up with), please put me in touch with them!
  • Follow me on Twitter and Facebook. The more followers I have, the more credible I look and the more great content you get to keep up with ;). The hashtag for this event is #writerswork

Lots more pictures will be coming! I can’t thank Jamie Cat Callan, AnneLise Sorensen, Jen Doll, Whitney Jacoby, Gayle Squires, Melissa Baumgart, Tricia Remark, and Christina Bryza enough! Also a special thanks to Capital One 360 for the venue, and Amy Stockhaus for the photography.

Only 35 tickets left!

writers conferenceMy free writers’ conference is booking up quickly – make sure you register to save a seat. Click here to register! Here’s a review of the amazing and talented speakers and their presentation topics:

How I Got a Job in Publishing” by Tricia Remark, contributor for Pyragraph, creator of the blog, Tricia’s Remarks, and Promotions Associate at Workman Publishing.

How I became a Writing Mentor” by Whitney Jacoby, publishing sales and marketing specialist. She is finishing up her third year as a mentor at Girls Write Now, an organization that pairs high school girls who want to be writers with women mentors.

How I Got a Literary Agent” by Melissa Baumgart, writer and tutor for Admit1MBA andAdmit2College. She is currently working on a Young Adult novel.

“How I Turned My Mortifications into a Memoir” by Jen Doll, author of Save the Date: The Occasional Mortifications of a Serial Wedding Guest. Jen has also written for The Atlantic, Mental Floss, New York Magazine, The New York Times Book Review, and other publications. 

How I became a Freelance Writer” by AnneLise Sorensen, contributor for New York MagazineMSNBCGalavanteNewYork.comDK Top Ten Barcelona, and Gourmet Magazine

How I Got Over Getting Published” by Christina Bryza, author of Are You My Boyfriend?, and founder of Golden Glance Editing. Visit her at ChristinaBryza.com or follow @christinaBEaneon Twitter.

How I Get Paid to Travel” by Jamie Cat Callan, author of Ooh La La! , Bonjour, Happiness! and the wildly popular French Women Don’t Sleep Alone. Jamie’s work has been featured in Vanity FairAllure Magazine, Glamour, Woman’s World, The Huffington Post, and The New York Times Sunday Styles Modern Love column.