Tuesday, September 20, 2005

ACFW Conference: It's all good

Please bear with me as I'm new to this blogging thing. But with the number of people I wanted to share my conference experiences with, it seemed as good a way as any. So join me on this blogging adventure. :)

It’s all good ☺
Couldn’t resist. That was one of the mantras of the ACFW conference in Nashville this past week. Depending on the intonation, you can put a plethora of meanings into that sentence. Kinda like “bless your heart,” the other mantra of the conference. Oh writers are a fun bunch to hang out with.

And God is good.

Back in the spring, I knew God wanted me to go to the conference. Generally, when my husband and I have the same idea, it’s God talking to us, that’s how different we are. So when Peter wanted me to go, I knew that was God. But we had no clue how I’d get there. Well, I received one of the conference scholarships, so that confirmed it. Peter has worked really hard since the spring, holding two jobs so I could have the money to go.

So, the Saturday before the conference when we were having my son’s fourth birthday party, I thought I was all set for the conference.

Until my crit partner called.

Her daughter works for the airline and she couldn’t find me in the system. I wasn’t worried. I had an e-mail with my confirmation, so I sent it to crit partner Jenny.

She called back. I was scheduled to fly out Wednesday.

I thought it was Thursday.


I don’t do change well. I can come around eventually, but it takes me some time to adjust. So at 12:30 AM I was calling the Sheraton Music City in Nashville to see if I could get my room a day early at the conference rate. I could.

Deep breath. Okay. It would put a serious crimp in the budget, but it couldn’t be helped. It was more expensive to change the flight. So I had to spend the money at some point.

Okay, we’ll be getting back to that, but fast-forward a bit to the conference. I’m a person who needs about 9 hours of sleep a night, more if I’m in a stressful situation like say, a conference. If I don’t, I get grouchy, cranky, achy, and generally am not fun to be around. I stare blankly at walls and can’t even remember my name, let alone what I’m writing. Such a wonderful state to be in when you want to impress editors and agents with how professional you are. I hadn’t gotten a lot of sleep leading up to the conference because I now had one less day to prepare than I thought. Then the first night I was there we had a fire alarm at 2:30 AM. Not to easy to go back to sleep after that.

It was only a precursor.

I had a five day slumber party.

God was good. I averaged five hours of sleep a night during the conference but amazingly felt—and looked, praise God!—well rested. As I had my quiet times each morning I told God how much I felt His presence literally holding me up and giving me energy. It was amazing.

I had so much talking to do with people I rarely get to see in real life that I hated to waste that time sleeping. It was great.

So, back to the paying for the extra night thing.

I didn’t.

The hotel, for whatever reason (I’m assuming the fire alarm), covered that night. My mentee bought my breakfast the next day, so the extra day in Nashville cost me nothing financially.

God is good.

More on the conference tomorrow.


  1. Jen, a free night was the least the hotel could do. I'm really glad it worked out that way.
    Can't wait to hear what's going on with all the proposals you were invited to send, not to mention get to read more Witness. :)


  2. SO proud of your, girlfriend--for making it to the conference and for figuring out how to create your own blogspot. ALL good!

    Don't forget to tell us how many publishers begged for your manuscript.

    Ps: Love my iBook! My new mini me. Thanks for the advice.