Since I credit the Muse Online Writers Conference (MOWC) and the connections I made, and continue to make, there as a big part of why I am looking forward to The Little Shepherd Boy coming out this fall, you would think I would remember how I heard about the darn thing in the first place. But, no. My brain refuses to recall that data.
I believe 2006 was the first year of the MOWC, and it was called the Muse Free Online Writers Conference then. The important words for me at that time were "online" and "free". With two young children and no steady income from my writing, I couldn't afford or even consider traveling to a writer's conference. This was the perfect solution. I didn't need to leave home and I didn't have to spend a dime. Who says miracles don't happen anymore?
Now, I'll be honest, I wasn't sure how much great stuff I could expect from a totally online, totally free writers conference. Not that I had anything to compare it to, but they don't say, "you get what you pay for," for nothing. I was, however, impressed, with the long list of available workshops. I signed up for as many as I thought I could handle and crossed my fingers that nothing in my life would mess up me being able to attend.
Once the conference got going, I realized I had taken too many workshops. Some had assignments or writing exercises, some didn't. The most important thing, however, is that I walked away feeling inspired, I had spent a week practicing my craft, and I had the information in my hands to keep me on the road toward honing my craft. Since the conference was held in October, a couple of weeks before National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) was due to kick off, the inspiration definitely carried over and I would attempt NaNoWriMo for the first time.
Another exciting thing that happened as a result of the 2006 MOWC is my securing a position as a regular contributor to Writer2Writer, an online magazine focused on teaching writers how to generate cash from their writing.
But, that, my friends, is a story for another post.