DFW Writer’s Conference ~ Memorable Moments

The Conference Center
This is where we spent our weekend. Not a bad gig, really. They totally spoiled us.

What an amazing weekend! It officially started last Friday with some shopping and sightseeing, but you'll have to wait for that post because today is all about the conference.

The DFW Writer's Conference is held in the quaint little town of Hurst, Texas where they talk with accents, decorate with cowboy boots, and call the ladies ‘ma'am'.

I'll be honest, I am not a fan of the way they set up the schedule at DFWCon. Some workshops are an hour, some an hour and half. This left odd gaps in my schedule that I usually filled with hanging out with all the other awesome writers at the conference.

Of course, being social was my favorite part of the weekend, but I was there to learn, too. Of the five workshops I attended, one was a dud, two were stellar, and two were total rock stars.

David CorbettDavid Corbett started off my conference experience getting me excited about characters. Best takeaway from his workshop? Your opponent has as much will or desire to destroy or undermine what your hero wants to achieve. Wow. I'd never really thought of my villain's motivation like that. Kind of fascinating. His lecture spurned all sorts of ideas and thoughts for my antagonists that I'm excited to put on paper.

Kelly is ridiculously gorgeous and super sweet. Love her!
Kelly is ridiculously gorgeous and super sweet. Love her! She also made me realize that I should always wear lipstick. See how her face lights up and mine, well doesn't? Yeah, lipstick. Always.

Kelly Simmon gave us some great marketing tips, but my favorite takeaway from her? When going to book signings, she reminded us that the people who come to the signing will have made an effort. It's important that we make an effort, too. Take a little time to look good. As one of her authors once told her, “You will be photographed when you don't know it. If you don't take the time, you will look like butt.” No one wants to look like butt. Take the time. Kelly is the founder and owner of InkSlinger PR, a marketing company for authors.

Roni rockin' the website workshop!
Roni rockin' the website workshop!

My absolute favorite workshop of the weekend was Roni Loren's. It had so much goodness in it, I was scribbling notes the entire time. The topic? Creating a website readers will love. She walked us through her website and taught us things I didn't know I didn't know. Now I know! Roni's one of those genuinely sweet people that once you meet her, you feel like you've known her your whole life. Go on and check out her website, while you're there, take a browse at her books. They're a little saucy, but so good! Best take away from Roni's class? Everything! If I had to pick one thing? Use Spotify for playlists. That way, the artist gets paid each time a reader clicks through. Brilliant.

Of course, the weekend wasn't all about the workshops! There was much mingling going on, as well as far too much laughing. I finally had the chance to meet tons of my online friends that I've been chatting with for years. I also, of course, made new friends.

The wigs, alas, stayed in the hotel room. There was some debate whether they were unprofessional and I am ashamed to admit, I caved to pressure and didn't don my confection of pinkness. Next time, I'm rocking that damn wig no matter what anyone says!

One of the other cool things about DFWCon is the access to agents. They are everywhere! Even if you don't have a set pitch time, you can just chat with the agents or editors in the hallways, at the cocktail party, etc. On Sunday, they had a Gong Show where query letters were read aloud (they're kept anonymous) by this guy with a movie trailer voice. When an agent would normally stop reading, they would bang the gong. It was hilarious and enlightening. Only one query made it all the way through. Even though we were all laughing at the antics and goofiness of the show, it was a great learning process to get inside the minds of several agents.

That's how the weekend ended! With a gong.

Here are a bunch of pictures to make you feel like you were there. Also, if you want a slightly shorter and much funnier recap, read Jess Witkins's The DFWCon Stalkathon post here. Or, you can read Syndey Aalilyah's My #DFWCon by the Numbers post here. She gives a quick and dirty breakdown of the weekend. I'm just way too wordy. I'll work on that, promise.


If you have a minute, here's a cool video of the groovy lights they had in the banquet room. I pretty much want this in my house now. My son added the music, he's so cool.

46 thoughts on “DFW Writer’s Conference ~ Memorable Moments”

  1. Rebekah LoperRebekah Loper

    I feel like bursting out into that “Near! Far! Wherever you are!” song by Celine Dion BECAUSE WE WERE SO CLOSE, dangit! (no, I’ve never actually seen Titanic all the way through. That was from Titanic, right?)

    Those lights are awesome, and I feel you on the “dud” workshops. I’ve been to a couple in my time, though I fortunately seemed to avoid the one(s) at OWFI this year.

    I’m glad you had fun! *hugs*

  2. susielindaususielindau

    Looks like a blast!
    Rock the wig. That would get you noticed and remembered!

  3. Faith Williams (@FaithProofing)Faith Williams (@FaithProofing)

    Sounds like you had fun and learned a bunch! I am secretly (I guess not-so-secretly now!) jealous that you writers have all that fun! I wonder if I should pose as a writer and go to one!

    • Jenny HansenJenny Hansen

      I wish I’d known that Sydney Michelle was Sydney Aaliyah, my online pal!! We totally met up in the bathroom and I’d have grabbed you for a big hug.

      On second thought, since I came home with the flu, maybe you lucked out…

  4. Diana BeebeDiana Beebe

    Tameri, great recap! I’m so glad that I finally got to meet you in person, too! You took lots of great photos…I already miss everybody.

  5. Jess WitkinsJess Witkins

    I’m so happy I got to hang out with you girls the last night! What a hoot you all are! I thought you were going to pack up our waiter as a carry on and write a book about him – fiction or not! LOL.

    Fabulous time with you, Tameri, and thank you thank you for the link back!

  6. Tiffany A WhiteTiffany A White

    This was my third year at DFWcon, and I’m with you.. not a fan of the schedule AT ALL. The overlapping lecture and workshop times was just infuriating. However, I will say this: almost every single class I selected to attend was great.

    Not to mention, it was so great finally getting to meet you!!!

    And how did you score that picture of me? I thought I avoided all cameras…

    • Jenny HansenJenny Hansen

      Tiffany, I LOVE that picture of you. My hubby and I agreed, you are rocking the exotic pretty thang. πŸ™‚

  7. Karen McFarlandKaren McFarland

    Aw, no wigs? Something is just wrong with that picture. I can’t imagine. Peer pressure sucks, doesn’t it Tameri? You can wear your pinkness around us anytime. We love ya! So glad you had a great time. So share some of the awesomeness of your classes with those of us who wished they could attend, but couldn’t. That would be amazing and very much appreciated. Just a thought, if you’re looking for something to blog about. Anyway, sounds like you’re doing well. Hope to see you soon! πŸ™‚

  8. Debra KristiDebra Kristi

    Fabulous recap! Sorry you didn’t rock that pink wig. You would have been the hit of the conference. Seriously! Michelle would have loved it. Roni’s workshop totally rocked and Kelly’s face totally shines. It makes me want her services now even though I don’t need her – yet. Honestly, I think your camera added ten pounds to each of us. Just saying. πŸ˜‰ Oh! And that video totally reinforces my desire and want for that lighting in my dining area. I don’t want for much, do I? LOL!

  9. David N. WalkerDavid N. Walker

    I sat in on some good workshops, but visiting friends and meeting new friends like you was the high point for me.

  10. Tracey LivesayTracey Livesay

    Sounds like a fun week-end. I’ll definitely check out Roni’s website. πŸ™‚

  11. jansenschmidtjansenschmidt

    Wow! Wish I could have been there. It sounds like it was a heap of good times. Can’t wait for more pix and info.

    Patricia Rickrode
    w/a Jansen Schmidt

  12. Jenny HansenJenny Hansen

    What a fabulous post, Tameri! You rocked it, and I do wish for the wigs. πŸ™‚

  13. patriciasandspatriciasands

    Great recap, Tameri! Even though you didn’t get to rock your wigs, it sounds like you had a fab time. It’s so much fun to see more and more of the WANAs getting to meet each other in person. Can’t wait for Atlanta!

  14. EmmaEmma

    Sounds like an epic time. Love the pics, and yes, next time wear those pink wigs with pride. πŸ™‚

    The villain’s motivation – good one. I’m currently re-writing scenes with my villain to make him more formidable.

  15. Coleen PatrickColeen Patrick

    Amazing! I’m going to remember this, Tameri–If you don’t take the time, you will look like butt. Love that!! πŸ™‚

  16. Gloria Richard AuthorGloria Richard Author

    Late to the party, Tameri — so I took the liberty of a bit of blog-jacking while reading the comments.

    You are SO FUN! I knew you would be, put catching your act LIVE (thank goodness) and in person was extra special.

    Is it July, yet? No? Good. I have some Sassy Flamingo summer shopping to do. You rocked that outfit. So sorry TSA didn’t appreciate your pant-leg glitz.

    Hope whoever patted you down was good looking and (of course) male. πŸ˜‰

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