Friday, July 11, 2008

ACFW, I'll Be Back This Year!

I missed ACFW last year, but a newborn was a good excuse, right? :) I'm very excited to meet up with everyone again, experience the awesome general sessions and worship time, and just soak in all I can about Christian publishing to help me be a better fiction editor. Getting to check out the Mall of America is a nice perk, too!

ACFW 2006 was my first conference. I was just a few months into my new job as editor for Heartsong Presents and still feeling like quite the rookie. So what amazed me the most was the extreme nervousness I could sense in some of the authors who met with me at appointments. I sat there all jittery myself wondering Why in the world are these folks nervous talking to me of all people? I realize the situation is intimidating, especially for unpublished authors. You’re sitting on one side of the table with your beloved work in your hands trying to articulate why someone should buy it and publish it for all the world to see. I’m one of the people who could help make that happen. Becky and I have discussed how we acquisitions editors have the power to make writers' dreams come true or dash them to pieces. Wow. That’s a power I don’t want to take lightly, nor one I want to let go to my head. In my mind, I’m just a regular “jo” (ha!) trying to do the best she can with the interests and skills and job God has given her. All credit goes to Him for putting me here and making my career dreams come true!

So, if you’re coming to conference and are scheduling an appointment with me, there’s no need to be nervous. I know it’s easier said than done, especially if you’re more of an introverted type of person. But don’t worry about little things like if you fumble your words or have a nervous habit. I do those same things! There’s no reason to be intimidated by me. I’m certainly no better than you, and God loves you and has plans for you just as He does me. If we end up working together on your book for Heartsong Presents, then it’s all a part of His plan. If not, He’s got other things for you.

Go to your appointments with me or any other editor with a confident but humble spirit, knowing that if you’re working for the glory of God and not yourself, He will bless your efforts exactly as He sees fit.
See you in September!

BTW, our trip to Colorado was fantastic! Here are some of my favorite pics!

15 comments:

Carrie Turansky said...

Yea, so glad you will be coming to ACFW this year. It should be a great time. I will look forward to seeing you there!

Carrie

Mary Connealy said...

It'll be great to meet you, JoAnne.

So then the rumors aren't true that you're bringing a gong to the conference, and placing the nervous wanna-be authors chairs over a trap door?

I'll try and squelch that rumor.

:)

Rhonda said...

Mary! you are a hoot!!

Myra Johnson said...

Thanks for the pep talk, JoAnne. Editor/agent appointments are my least favorite part of conferences. But you're right -- most of the Christian publishing pros I've met with have been easy to talk to and ready with encouragement, even when the project wasn't right for them.

Except for one or two who did look suspiciously like they were reaching for the trap door release.

Janet Spaeth said...

Whew! I was going into Jodi withdrawal! I love the pictures you post of her--my daughter loves them, too. Is Jodi coming to the conference? Wonder if I could get an appointment with her?

It looks like you had a blast in Colorado! Jodi must be a good traveler.

I can't wait to meet you in Minneapolis, JoAnne, and I hope to get to meet the rest of the family, too. I love the Twin Cities, and the Mall of America is my home-away-from-home...and you did know there's a big IKEA right next to the MOA, right? Yes, I've decided to drive rather than fly. Apparently Northwest Airlines is a bit finicky about letting me fill up the baggage compartment with my treasures....

I have to say, though, that I'm one of those Nervous Nellies about talking to an editor, so if I stammer and say something dreadful, have pity. Or patience, LOL!

Myra Johnson said...

There's an IKEA in Minneapolis??? YEA!!! I've been having withdrawal ever since we moved away from Houston! We'd already planned to drive, so this is even more incentive. Thanks for the heads-up, Janet!

Janet Spaeth said...

Myra, IKEA is literally right next to the MOA. So we'll be a hop, skip, and a jump away (and what an image THAT is, huh?)

Lynette Sowell said...

I'm looking forward to the conference this year. The hardest part is leaving my family for four days, but it's also good to be away from any distractions. :) I'm also looking forward to meeting you, JoAnne. :)

Debby Mayne said...

Thanks for this post, JoAnne. It's nice to know you understand the nerves.

I'm really looking forward to the whole conference experience this year. Like you, I had to miss last year. But I plan to take advantage of everything offered--including the wonderful MOA. I'm just glad Janet knows her way around, or I'd definitely get lost.

Jodi is such a doll! Thanks for more pics!

Anita Mae said...

The ACFW will be my 1st conf. I'm getting excited now but I know my nerves will kick in on the drive down. It'll take me 15 hrs to drive from SE Sask.

IKEA! I haven't been to an IKEA since I went to the one attached to West Edmonton Mall in Alberta. I love their stuff. So efficient.

JoAnne - I was looking forward to meeting you until Mary made the crack about the trap door...

...But then, I was looking forward to meeting you too, Mary...

:-)

Have a God day!

Jennifer Hudson Taylor said...

Last year was my first ACFW Conference and I loved it! I plan to be there again this year. Looking forward to meeting you!

Erica Vetsch said...

I'm sure I'll be a wreck and a half, but I look forward to meeting you this year, JoAnne. Last year I pitched something to Becky and I wanted to shove my one-sheet at her and close my eyes until she read it. She was so nice and put me at ease right away. It will be nice to renew her acquaintance in just over two months.

JoAnne said...

Thanks for all your comments! IKEA near MOA?? Sweet! I still have never been to one but am planning on visiting the one in Pittsburgh in August.

I wish Jodi were coming with me and taking appointments. The conference will be my first significant amount of time away from her, and I know I'll miss her like crazy! If you see me on my cell phone a lot talking in silly voices, you'll know why :)

Jodi sure seems like she'd like to work for me. On Friday I was reviewing a manuscript at home and she toddled over and really wanted to grab my pen. So I let her check it out, hoping she wouldn't try to stick it down her throat or in her eye! The second she got a hold of it, she held it correctly and tried to write on the manuscript, just like Mommy was doing! She wants to be an editor, too, I just know it! :)

Debby Mayne said...

Jodi will be a natural for editing! I think part of the beauty of working at home is showing our children that side of ourselves. Back when I was a child. I never really understood what my parents were doing all day when they "went to work." It was very mystical and sort of scary.

Cara Putman said...

If you brought Jodi we could let her watch Rebecca. :-) It is so hard to leave them the first time-but I've learned it makes mommy very popular when she gets home LOL