I am now home, exhausted and only partially unpacked.
But it was good to be with other writers. To see the books that other women have written. To hear their passion. To see them prepare for their talks with a high-level of professionalism.
One thing missing from the conference?
We were all rooting for one another. There was not a feeling of You versus Me during any moment of the conference. Everyone offered suggestions to each other: how to improve a book table (Thank you, Trish and Terri!) We prayed for each other, we laughed together, we encouraged one another when Friday was a slow day in the Resource Room--and rejoiced when things picked up on Saturday.
Do you want to make progress along The Writing Road?
Then make friends. Competitors won't hug you when you're down. Competitors won't keep an eye on your book table while you make a bathroom run or go grab a bottle of water. Competitors won't send someone over to your book table saying, "I don't have what you're looking for, but she does."
But a friend will.
It's your choice: You can make the travels along The Writing Road a solitary journey--and a competitive one. Or you can enjoy the company of writing comrades you meet along the way.