Top 5 Pieces of Advice for Future Conference-goers

I promise, this is the last conference related post I’ll write for a LONG time! Also, here is a link to my video tour of the conference:

1. Find a line and stand in it.

My top priority at the conference was to make friends and the absolute best way to meet people and strike up a conversation is while they are waiting in line. They are bored and have nothing better to do than talk to you. Intead of sitting in the lobby hoping someone would introduce themselves, I would just get in the 30 minute line for the hotel’s Starbucks shop and Voila–new friends! I bought more Chai tea lattes than I wanted, but it was worth it.

2. Business cards

THE best way to remember to link up with someone post-conference, but when you take their card, write down on the back where you met them and some standout details about them. I luckily read this bit of advice elsewhere and was prepared accordingly. Trust me, if you don’t write it down, you will forget who they are. Also, stash your cards in your name tag so you aren’t fumbling around in your purse for them.

3.Wear something memorable.

Faces can be really hard to remember, but you can help people out by dressing uniquely. For guys, if you have a hat of some kind or a shirt in a distinct color or with a logo, you will be easier to remember. Girls have a lot more flexibility, so I won’t go into all the options. I wore a yellow dress and leather jacket on my first day and I can’t prove it, but I’ll bet it helped people recognize me. Oh, and don’t forget a sweater because the conference rooms are freezing.

4. Don’t assume everyone is a writer.

I never did get the hang of this one. I continuously made the mistake of saying “So what do you write?” to people who turned out to be illustrators! Everyone was very nice about it, but it was still a careless thing to say.

5. Take risks.

Write entries for the joke box, go all out for the costume party, ask questions at the workshops, skip a few speakers so you can mingle, take lots of pictures, spend a ton of money on books, and invite random people to lunch. This is no time to let chances pass you by.


2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Courtney Mohland
    Aug 11, 2011 @ 22:27:15

    Love your advice. I think it’s totally true, especially the last one.


  2. Sandie Sing
    Aug 11, 2011 @ 22:47:02

    Great tips Tahlia. I love them all. Words of wisdom.


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