This month, I attended the Erma Bombeck Writers Workshop in Dayton, Ohio. The conference really is one of a kind. It's an event for humor writers of all kinds and only happens every two years. The conference draws big names, such as Dave Barry in the past, and this year one of its many nice guests was W. Bruce Cameron (8 Simple Rules...).
Because it draws humor writers from all over the country, the conference actually sells out every time. (Amazing in such an economic climate.) Check out this picture of the main ballroom at eating time.
Check Out These Great Upcoming Writers Conferences:
- Feb. 11, 2017: Writers Conference of Minnesota (St. Paul, MN)
- Feb. 16–19, 2017: San Francisco Writers Conference (San Francisco, CA)
- Feb. 24, 2017: The Alabama Writers Conference (Birmingham, AL)
- Feb. 25, 2017: Atlanta Writing Workshop (Atlanta, GA)
- March 25, 2017: Michigan Writers Conference (Detroit, MI)
- March 25, 2017: Kansas City Writing Workshop (Kansas City, MO)
- April 8, 2017: Philadelphia Writing Workshop (Philadelphia, PA)
- April 22, 2017: Get Published in Kentucky Conference (Louisville, KY)
- April 22, 2017: New Orleans Writers Conference (New Orleans, LA)
- May 6, 2017: Seattle Writers Conference (Seattle, WA)
- May 19–21, 2017: PennWriters Conference (Pittsburgh, PA)
- June 24, 2017: The Writing Workshop of Chicago (Chicago, IL)
- Aug. 18–20, 2017: Writer's Digest Conference (New York, NY)
I taught a pair of workshops on getting an agent. I didn't realize it until the day before I spoke, but with my Garden Gnome Attack book coming out in September, I am a published humor book author, which immediately gave me all kinds of street cred at the event. Score. Attendees were nice and, being that it was a humor-loving crowd, jokes were zinging everywhere.
At lunch, I got to sit next to Mo Rocca, formerly correspondent for "The Daily Show." He was in town on behalf of "CBS News Sunday Morning" doing a piece on the conference, as you can see by the pic below. (The piece is tentatively scheduled to air on Mother's Day. How cool is that?) I reminded Mo that we crossed path in Key West when I was on my honeymoon and he was filming something down there. He stared at me like I was crazy.
Would I recommend going to this event in the future? Absolutely. The list of speakers is big-time, and everyone is all smiles over the three days. Presenters give speeches multiple times, so if you miss something the first time, you can catch it on the second go-round. (Smart.) There are no agents or editors at the event, but it does bring the power players of humor book writing and column writing (networking!), so it's well worth it ... that is, if you can sign up in time.