Community,  Craft

Do-It-Yourself Writers’ Conferences For The Poor And Xenophobic

It happened again.

Another fall has arrived and you will not be going to a writer’s conference.

 I’ve been trying to get to the ACFW conference in September every fall for the last five years and I’m not any closer now than I was five years ago.  I did, however, get to go to the marketing seminar hosted by my agent’s firm. While it was cozy and fun and certainly educational, it’s not a BIG CONFERENCE like ACFW or RWA.

Because I can’t go, I can do one of two things. One option is to mope around and feel sorry for myself and decide that watching the new fall television lineup is more important than pursuing my dreams. The other option, and the one that is a lot more entertaining, IMHO, is to create my own conference! You can do this too!

If you do your own conferencing in the privacy of your own home, it’s free and there’s the added bonus of not actually having to talk to people. For us financially strapped xenophobes out there, this is a win-win.

Where can I find cheap writers conferences?

I’ve created a list of some of the hundreds (if not thousands) of free resources for writers online.

This is NOT exhaustive. But it will certainly get you started if you can’t afford to go out to learn how to be a great writer. There are blogs, websites, videos, virtual conferences, podcasts and groups you can participate in. And DON’T forget your local library (although you should put clothes on to go there, and you may have to actually speak to someone there.)

Here you go!

Need To Feel Like You Are Actually At A Conference?

Colgate Writer’s Conference on YouTube, Or The Muse Online Writer’s Conference  or the WriteOnCon for kidlit writers,

Need To Listen To Celebrity Authors Talk About Writing?

 Anne Rice on YouTube, Susan Conley at TedTalks, Rick Riordan,  Need more? Do a search on YouTube for “Authors Talk About Writing” and you will be amazed at what you find.

General Fiction Writing Tips and Strategies?

Start here: Inside Creative Writing, episode one from Florida State University, Then, you can YouTube search: fiction writing.  You will find DOZENS of videos to watch. Watch them all!

Need Ideas For Marketing?

 Eighty-nine book marketing ideas that will change your life. And Five Easy Ways To Publicize and Promote Your Book or, if you’re a member of the 10 Minute Novelists Facebook Group, you can read the feed of the chat we had a few weeks ago “Messy Mash-Up Marketing Marathon: My Notes From The MacGregor Literary Seminar”.  What? You’re NOT A MEMBER OF OUR FACEBOOK GROUP?  You can click here and join!

Getting restless? Wanna actually do some writing?

 Here’s a link to 10 Universities that offer free writing courses! FREE EDUCATION!  All you poor impoverished xenophobes out there don’t even have to get dressed!

Other things you can do!

Listen to podcasts

Sign up for writers groups.

Read everything about writing you can get your hands on at your library.

Find a coach or mentor.

Find online resources that are often free.

Read agents’ blogs.

Read editors’ blogs.

Ask authors if you can interview them.


And Follow Our Pinterest Boards!

10 Minute Novelists have over fifty writing related boards on Pinterest that link you to hundreds of resources on craft, marketing, social media, writing prompts, structure, character, everything!

Yes, I have to stand next to the financially strapped and xenophobic writers this year, but that’s not an excuse for not learning all I can about how to write well. If I can do it, you can too! 

What if I can't go to a conference?

Do you have any other suggestions? What worked for you? What didn’t work? Are you poor or xenophobic or both? 


Katharine Grubb has mastered the art of freewriting because she wrote her first novel in 10 minute increments. There are probably easier ways to write a book, but with homeschooling her five children, she’ll take what she can get. Her latest book, Write A Novel In 10 Minutes A Day was just released and is available on She lives in Massachusetts and blogs at

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