... I have the great pleasure of presenting a guest post from, friend and author, Bea Fishback, today. So kick off your shoes, get a cuppa and read more about the Power of One...
I have been to a few writing conferences/events in the past and each has been a unique experience. However, the most recent program that I attended was special in a different sort of way.
Although I generally don’t know any of the attendees at a particular conference, and as an extrovert this usually isn’t an issue, I was feeling particularly vulnerable and isolated this time. Most often, I have the courage to step out and introduce myself to others. Then there are the moments that even this extrovert can feel a bit of the introvert pull.
I found a seat midway down the sloped theater seating, opened my notebook preparing for the seminar to begin, and wondered if anyone else around me felt as alone as I did.
Across the room, I saw someone I thought I knew but was unsure so I lowered my eyes and scanned the blank paper in front of me in an act of concentration. Again I looked up. And sure enough, the person I thought I had recognized waved in my direction.
Inwardly I breathed a huge sigh of relief. I wasn’t alone. I knew one person. And it dawned on me that she probably had no idea how much power she had over my emotions right then. It was the power of one. The one who noticed me in the crowd.
As writers, we tend to live a reclusive lifestyle in order to finish manuscripts, be inspired by the next idea, or finish up the endless social media sites we maintain each day in order to stay relevant.
So, whether we “see” one another on FB or attend a program, it’s important that we acknowledge and support our comrades in words. We were never intended to live life in a vacuum—even a writing vacuum.
A few tips for writing events:
- Reach out to others. Everyone is in the same situation and each needs a seed of encouragement. Even a simple smile can change the writing event for someone.
- If you are in a group, invite someone you don’t know to your table during a meal. There are many who attend for the first time and are looking for a warm welcome.
- Be the Power of One by setting an example to others by your warmth and acceptance to a lone visitor.
How about you? What experiences have you had when you’ve gone to a writing conference where you didn’t know anyone? Share so others can learn from the good and the bad.
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