What's so exciting about it? Well, the opportunity to meet new people, other writers, and network within the writing/publishing industry is very cool! There are list-serves and online groups and lots of ways to stay connected, but there's nothing quite like meeting like-minded individuals face to face. I'm also looking forward to informative workshops and publisher spotlights. I can't wait to learn from writers, agents, and editors who have the experience to help writers like me improve their craft!
I've been writing for what seems like forever... since I first discovered the joy of putting words together in creative ways, waaaaaaay back in the sixth grade. Seven years ago I made the decision to write "seriously", not only for the chance to pursue publication, but also for the chance to learn and improve and become a better writer. In those seven years I've written a lot of things, experimented with a lot of genres, and I now feel I have a definite "handle" on where my own writing fits. I love the variety, the creative freedom, and the imagination that exists in young adult fiction. And I love the idea that imaginative young adult fiction is generating a love of reading in young people. Really, what better pass-time is there for a young kid, than reading a book that is entertaining, informative, and provides them with a bit of escape from real life? As a middle school teacher by day, it thrills me to NO END to see my students carrying around books and using their free moments to read a few pages.
I love reading. I love writing. And I love working with tweens/teens. Perhaps one day the combination of those things will help me achieve publication. But if not, I'll still write... because, as I always say, the writing is far more generous to me than I am to it!