Pretty generic, but decent advice. I want to apply it to something I am definitely enthusiastic about:
This is probably the only writer's conference I will attend this year and it's less than two weeks away! Excitement is building. Enthusiasm--check. But boldness?
I remember the first conference I attended. I carpooled with a friend, we went separate ways for classes, but met up again for meals. She introduced me to a few of her conference friends and I had a great time. In contrast, I attended a smaller conference not long afterward, expecting a similar experience. While the workshops were great, I found myself at a lunch table with equally reserved novice writers. There was more eating than conversing. My next experiences went better and I want this time to be my best yet. But it will take a mindset of boldness. For most writers, being bold takes planning.
Things I plan to do to make better people connections at my next writer's conference:
1. Smile. Be friendly. Say hello.
2. Write out and practice a couple of elevator pitches to answer the ever-present "What do you write?" and "Tell me about your book" questions.
3. Be on the lookout for and reconnect with old friends.
4. Sit close to the front when that is an option.
5. Introduce myself to my publishing company's rep.
6. Prepare something for a future blog post and ask people to participate or guest post, etc.
That gives me some good things to shoot for. Now let's see if I can walk the walk.