Friday, September 10, 2010

The Geniuses of WriteOnCon: Casey McCormick

Hi!!! Yes, I'm excited! We've got another literary rockstar interview for you today!

Casey McCormick (photo from WriteOnCon web site)


Also known as Casey McCormick of the Agent Spotlight series on her blog, Literary Rambles. Let me just say that when I discovered Agent Spotlight, it made my querying life 100x EASIER! Thank you, Casey!

Katrina Lantz: WriteOnCon was seriously epic, historic, unprecedented! As one of its organizers, did you expect WriteOnCon to garner as much industry support as it did? To what do you owe this?

Casey McCormick: We didn’t know what to expect when we started contacting industry professionals about WriteOnCon, so we were astounded when nearly everyone wanted to be involved. They loved the idea! The response from attendees was equally overwhelming and heartwarming.

We owe everything to the kidlit community. People in the children's book industry are some of the most amazing, giving, and vibrant people out there. It's an honor to be part of such a generally selfless, empowering community.

Katrina: What were your thoughts on opening morning when thousands flocked to the site to participate in the first free online writer's conference?

Casey: It was amazing to see the conference come to life, the first responses of our attendees. I couldn’t have been happier. It was really happening! Everyone loved it! 

Then, nightmare of nightmares, the server crashed and my thoughts were much more dour, but everything worked out just fine in the end, great even.

Katrina: What was the hardest part about WriteOnCon's organization?

Casey: I think the hardest part, for me, was keeping up with all the changes and e-mails. We threw so many ideas around in the beginning and had so many new developments during our brief three months of planning, that it was hard to keep everything straight. That, and time the whole project took. I think my family is glad to have me firmly back in the “real world” (for now)!

Katrina: What was the most important thing you learned this year that will help with future online conferences?

Casey: Dreams are not out of reach. WriteOnCon started as a small, crazy idea that turned into a large, amazing reality. I've realized how much a person can accomplish with the right amount of dedication, daring, and support.

Katrina: What’s next for WriteOnCon? The discussion forums remain active.
What role do you see WriteOnCon playing between annual conferences?

Casey: The forums will remain open between conferences, and I hope a great community will grow and bond there.

We also have monthly live events planned that will benefit writers while they eagerly await the big, annual conference each year.

Katrina: We think it's amazing the work you all did to put on such an amazing conference, and for FREE! Will next year's conference still be free?

Casey: Definitely! The free, accessible nature of the conference is WriteOnCon's very foundation. It's not going anywhere. 

Katrina: Do you know of any success stories (agents and authors who found each other during the conference)?

Casey: Several writers received requests from agents through the forums and contests, but I’m not sure if any matches resulted from that. I know many writers found critique partners and critique groups in the forums, and I count each of their stories as a success as well. It’s so important to have a source of support and feedback. 

Katrina: What do you think makes a writer AWESOME?

Casey: An awesome writer perseveres despite doubt and rejection, never stops learning and honing their craft, evokes emotion and reaction in their reader, and remains humble and gracious when success finally calls. 

Katrina: Beautiful answer!

Casey: Thank you so much for the interview and your support of WriteOnCon, Kristal, Kelly, Angela, Katrina, Amparo, and Lindsay. We're honored!

Umm, WE are honored! :-)

Other places you'll find Casey:

Follow Casey on Twitter
Literary Rambles
List of Interviews with Casey
Flashy Fiction
Publisher's Marketplace 
Verla Kay Boards

Say hello to Casey in the comments!

Also, if you missed our interview with Elana Johnson, umm, why did you miss it?! 


Kristal Shaff said...

Thanks so much for helping the writing community, Casey. Your blog, WriteOnCon, this interview.

And of course, for being awesome. :)

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Great interview. And I can maintain the humble part.

Stina said...

Great interview! I went back the other day to check out a few sessions I missed or wanted to reread. I haven't revisited the forums yet.

I was one of the lucky ones who landed a request during the conference. I had to email the agent and tell her she has to wait a little longer since I wasn't ready to query the book just yet. Now that was a cool feeling. :)

Katrina L. Lantz said...

Yay, Stina! Good luck to you. We hope it's another success story!

Alex, hey, that humble part is maybe the most important part! It allows the keep learning part.

Great answers, Casey! I love reading the different perspectives of the same awesome event!

Pam Harris said...

Hello Casey! I LOVED the online conference. It was so cool to get the latest info in my PJs. :) I'm looking forward to it next year.

Kell Andrews said...

Hi Casey! Thanks for participating in the conference and in this interview!

Lindsay said...

Yay. Casey there are no words to say how awesome you, and the other WriteOnCon peeps are.

Great interview, Katrina :)

Elana Johnson said...

Great answers, Casey! I mean, she is the brainchild of WOC, which clearly means she's the most awesome.

Amparo Ortiz said...

I agree with Elana. Brainchild = Queen Of Awesomeland ;)

Great interview, Katrina! (as usual...)

And a bunch of thanks to Casey for stopping by!

Casey McCormick said...

Thanks so much everyone!

Congrats on the request, Stina. How exciting!

Elana, pfft, we're all equally awesome. No awesome left behind!

Thanks again for the interview girls. You rock!

DL Curran said...

What a great interview! Glad I stopped by. :)

Janet Johnson said...

Great interview! Casey's blog is a life-saver, and WriteOnCon was amazing. Casey is definitely made of awesome.