Why attending conferences is awesome for writers

I’m about as introverted as they come, so freelance writing — done mostly in my own home, with no other people around — is the perfect fit for me.

But sometimes, I do make myself get out of the house and connect with other human beings. I like to attend occasional conferences to keep myself up to date on the niches I freelance in and to bolster my writing craft.

This week, I’m at the annual conference of the Northwest Council for Computer Education. That lets me overhear teacher conversations, attend sessions that cover the issues teachers care about, and visit the exhibit hall to learn more about and connect with potential clients.

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Is Your Intellectual Property Protected?

I’ve recently started hearing “Nothing Compares 2 U” in a commercial. I like the song, and it’s always nice to hear different takes on good songs. But I know that Prince didn’t often authorize the use of his songs for advertising, so it made me a little sad that his heirs weren’t wasting any time profiting off his work.

After attending a lecture at the Rose City Romance Writers, though, I’ve changed my opinion.

M.L. Buchman spoke about how to prepare your heirs to control your intellectual property and benefit from your legacy. One of the biggest point he drove home was that once you’re dead, it’s not fair to say how your heirs can use your legacy.

I like to control things, so I bristle at this a little bit, but it makes sense. You’re dead — what do you care of your song is used in a commercial? And if it keeps your spouse, kids, or other next of kin in a house and well fed, then you’ve done your part to provide.

Buchman is a romance writer on the Oregon coast, and he is currently working on a book to help creatives prepare a document their heirs can use to access and manage their intellectual property. It’s an important part of estate planning that I’d never thought of. Here are a few highlights.

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5 Easy Hacks to Write Faster

write-faster-facebookWe’ve all been there.

You’ve got a story or an article you need to write, and you’re just not moving fast enough. Sometimes you’re not in the right mindset. Other times, you’re just too distracted by all the other things you need to get done around the house.

Whether it’s your brain or your fingers causing the problems, try these easy hacks to write faster.

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Struggling with NaNoWriMo? Resources to Help Writers

We’re a few days into NaNoWriMo, the month where writers around the world commit to writing a novel (or a 50,000 word draft) in one month.

If you’re struggling to get going, here are five quick resources you can use to bust through your writer’s block and get in your 1,500+ words per day.

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