My highlights from the Saskatchewan Writer’s Guild Annual Conference

The Saskatchewan Writer’s Guild held it’s annual conference in mid-October and, as always, there was a lot to take in and a lot to learn. While I can’t possibly share everything, I do want to highlight some of the more memorable lessons I took away from each presentation I attended.

Keeping it Fresh: Survival Tactics

  • As writers, writing is a part of who we are. This means you have to believe in yourself and think of yourself as a real writer, no matter where you may be in relation to being published.
  • We need the support of other people, especially other writers. This likely means finding a trusted group or community you can be a part of.
  • Go on with a project, even if it means trying it in different forms (for example, as a play as opposed to a novel). Sometimes persevering means compromising.
  • Know yourself well enough to know what you need. This translates to a lot of things. Examples include learning whether it’s better for you to meet with a writing group once a week or once a month, and finding the self-care methods that work best for you.
  • Remember and be thankful for the things you’ve accomplished.

The Reclamation Project: In Conversation with Louise Halfe

  • Read, read read.
  • Research and explore. Give yourself the permission of non-judgmental expression.
  • Don’t argue with your muse, or her pace. For example, if she wants to write the story slowly, don’t try to rush it.

How to Succeed as a Nonfiction Writer

  • Find stories by getting to know your community. Be engaged with the world.
  • Know what you’re good at and focus on it. That doesn’t mean, though, that you shouldn’t keep learning new things.
  • Trust your instincts, your education, and your experience.
  • Remember why you became a writer–don’t let it become a chore.

Art that Saves Lives and its Residue

  • A story can leave a mark on a reader, but it also leaves its mark on the writer.
  • Art that is honest has integrity and the power to keep us going through/bring us out of hard times.
  • Art can give the artist purpose and some, even if it’s small, power over their situation.
  • You have no control over what your art does/the effect that it has once it’s out in the world.

Q & A with an Author

  • When you’re stuck, look for another part to work on. That could provide new perspective when you return to the section you had trouble with.
  • A love for learning is an important part of writing.
  • Everyone has something to share, be it a story, wisdom, etc.
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2 thoughts on “My highlights from the Saskatchewan Writer’s Guild Annual Conference

  1. Hello Miranda, Great to chat with you today and find you online… I’m enjoying looking around at your blog. Will see you again, I”m sure! I think I am commenting as a blogger (experimentingaswegrow.wordpress.com). If you are interested, please check out http://www.wonderscaperetreats.com which gives more info about the creative arts retreats I faciliate. Would be thrilled to have you come. Also, love the header on this site. Beautiful photography!!! – Tricia Friesen Reed

    1. Hi, Tricia! It was great chatting with you today, too! I’m glad to hear you’re enjoying my blog. And thank you so much for the compliment about my photography! I’ll definitely take a look at Wonderscapes; from what you said today, your retreats sound wonderful. I’m going to have to see if I can get to one soon. See you soon, I hope! 🙂

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