As I type this I am on a flight back from San Francisco to Atlanta returning from the 2013 San Francisco Writer’s Conference. This camp for authors sells out every year. 400 authors jog from hour long course to course reviewing everything from story development, blogging, book cover design, dealing with Amazon, self publishing, pitching agents, and just about anything else you can think of. What I enjoyed most was the supportive camaraderie among the panelists and attendees, ranging from first time authors, like myself, to New York Times Bestselling authors.
This conference was not only great for meeting new people and making new connections, it was a wonderful time for catching up with old friends. (Let the name drops begin) I was able to see my good friend Carla King, author of Self-Publishing Boot Camp , moderate an extremely informative discussion on self-publishing (or indie publishing as I was corrected to use multiple times) with a panel of experts on the subject. Included in that panel was Stephanie Chandler, whose team I used for developmental editing. Stephanie is the founder of the non-fiction publisher Authority Publishing. In addition she has also written multiple books on marketing and sales. It was also a pleasure to see Rusty Shelton of Shelton Interactive, a brilliant digital marketing firm. A big thanks to him for giving me some invaluable advice. And of course I was delighted to see Rachel Thompson, author of two #1 Amazon Bestsellers, social media guru, and all around super person. Finally, Michael Larsen and Laurie McLean ran a great show. Their generosity of spirit can not be overstated.
The overall lesson I took away is that books are all about the reader. Education, entertainment, storyline, character development, and editing editing editing; it is my job to make sure that the reader enjoys the ride. I am working hard surrounding myself with people that know more than I do to bring my story to you in a way that will keep you wanting to read another page rather than go to bed. Sometimes it is a pleasure and other times it is overwhelming.
Just organizing all the contact information for the new people I met will take hours, not to mention their interesting stories! I can’t tell you how many authors have “truth is stranger than fiction” books in the cooker for you. I have not been blogging much because I have been in my dungeon writing the book and running the company during the day. I am lucky that I have such a good team of people at LabMD that can manage the day to day operations while I try to slay the government beast with the power of the pen.
Regardless of how much blogging, tweeting, networking, interviewing, and advertising I might do, if the book isn’t good, those efforts will fall flat. The book has to be good because nothing sells books better than word of mouth. I loved going to the San Francisco Writer’s Conference. My tank is full again so I can return to the silence of my ideas and computer. When you read the book, tell me what you think and what you still want to know. Help me bring you a good story. If you haven’t already, click on the Atlanta Business Chronicle story on my homepage at MichaelJDaugherty.com and watch your jaw drop.
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Michael Daugherty is President & CEO of LabMD, an Atlanta-based clinical and anatomic medical laboratory with a national client base. Mike founded LabMD in 1996 after 14 years in surgical device sales with U.S. Surgical Corp. and Mentor Corporation.
Outside of LabMD, enjoys playing tennis, travel, and flying his Cirrus SR22 Turbo single engine aircraft.
Mike can be found: