The Canada East SCBWI Conference is this weekend, and I’m not going. It wasn’t an easy decision to make, and to be honest, I’m still not 100% sure it was the right one (but it’s too late to change my mind now). I’ve been to the last…five(?) of their conferences, and I’m definitely sorry to be missing this one.
A lot of things went into my decision: being in-between the Beginner (what agents are looking for) and Pro categories (how to improve your school visits), the expense, the distance (everything is farther/more difficult when you can’t drive), my health, and the massive depression/case of Imposter Syndrome I was suffering from when it came time to sign up.
I will miss the social aspect, though. Getting to meet up with other writers, some I only get to see at these conferences, and making new friends. Some of my closest writing contacts have come from these conferences. But we have an Ottawa SCBWI get-together in a couple of weeks, and I’ll definitely be going to it, so at least I’ll get to see a few people.
I’m already thinking ahead to next year. The conference usually alternates between Montreal and my hometown of Ottawa, so if it keeps to schedule, next year it will be here. Having the conference in town definitely cuts down on costs: less transportation, most meals at home, and no hotel. Just the cost of the actual conference.
So, while I’m really sad to be missing out this year, I think I did make the right choice for me. But I already can’t wait for next year.