I came home from Magnetic Island just in time for trimester 3 at uni and also to find how I’d been successful in my application to be a volunteer at the Independent Publishing Conference at the Wheeler Centre.
It was fabulous fun. The first day was student day. If your application for volunteer status had been rejected then students could attend on Wednesday for the vast sum of $29 and could hear speakers discuss how you can earn money from writing, what jobs to apply for, what the promotion system can be like and how to apply for those jobs. There was also afternoon tea and networking.
The other three days were divided up into Industry Research Day, I didn’t attend this at all to my eternal sadness, Trade Day and the Fundamentals of Publishing Day. I did as much of these days as I possibly could but I’m not telling you much about the sessions as I had stuff to do so missed too many chunks. If you check out the hashtag #IndPubCon you can get a lot more than I can tell you.
It was at this conference that I suddenly realised how truly and completely I’ve managed to get myself into the right place. Watching the speakers and reading their bios in the conference publication told me I already knew three of them personally. Not that I’d ever met them but I’d had conversations with them on Twitter over the past few years and two of them actually remembered me!
Kate Cuthbert, Adele Walsh and Karen Andrews were the three people I knew beforehand. It was absolutely delightful to meet them all in person and to see what they’re doing now. I knew them when they were still relatively new in the blogging world just as I was and we had fun on Twitter together with conversations about books and blogging. Watching them made me feel there’s hope for me yet and also made me realise this is the longest I’ve done anything other than bring up a family, my longest job was four years and I’ve been blogging now for seven. I think the book industry is definitely for me, what part of the book industry is still unclear but there are a few avenues of possibility roaming around my brain.
I thank the Small Press Network for accepting volunteers and Deakin Writers for spreading the word on Facebook. Without them I’d still be feeling a little uncertain about books, writing and my role in the industry surrounding them.