Sunday, August 25, 2013

Killer Nashville & a Self-Editing Handout

Clay Stafford interviews D.P. Lyle
by Jodie Renner, editor, author, speaker
Just back from another excellent writers’ conference! This one was the 8th annual Killer Nashville conference in – you guessed – Nashville, Tennessee. Congratulations to Beth Terrell and Clay Stafford and their crew for all their hard work on organizing a highly successful conference.

Guests of Honor were DP Lyle and Anne Perry, both amazing people! Doug Lyle gave a highly entertaining talk called "Best-Laid Plans: What Were They Thinking?" about the OJ Simpson and Scott Peterson cases.

I attended some excellent sessions, both panels and workshops, presented a workshop myself on Deep Point of View or Close Third-Person POV, and was on a panel on editing your won work.

I participated in a panel on revision and self-editing, called "Be Your Own Editor: Make Your Book the Best it Can Be," which was extremely well-attended (the large room was filled) and attendees were very enthusiastic afterward about how they appreciated all the concrete suggestions for revising, editing, and polishing their novels. I distributed two handouts to attendees, both with great tips on revising. Click HERE to go to my own blog to read one of them. They'll also appear on the Killer Nashville website soon.

The amazing Beth (Jaden) Terrell was our moderator. Editors: Christina Wilburn, me, and Carolyn Mulford

It was awesome to meet my client Lynn Sholes . Lynn, her husband Tommy and I, plus several others had some great discussions. We missed Lynn's co-author, Joe Moore, who had to cancel at the last minute!

It was great to meet Beth Terrell and Clay Stafford, the organizers of Killer Nashville, and a lot of Facebook friends, as well as some great new writerly people. I had excellent conversations with a number of interesting, talented people and should have gotten a lot more photos snapped!

Suzanne Berube, Sarah Wisseman, Jane, Molly MacRae, & Jodie

Then Sunday morning at 8:30, I presented a 90-minute solo
workshop on Engaging your Readers with Deep Point of View. I was thrilled with the number of people who got up on time for it on the third day of a very busy conference! I expected 6 or 7 people and was surprised when about 40-45 showed up and eagerly participated. It was a lot of fun! 

One side of the room for my presentation

I've been to a lot of different writers' conferences in the last three years or so and find them stimulating and a lot of fun! I love the networking and making new friends, then keeping in touch with them on Facebook or by email.

I had no idea I was so short! LOL

I gave away two copies of my books at each of my presentations, and sold about 30 - roughly the same number as at Thrillerfest. Doesn't come close to covering expenses, of course, but that wasn't the idea!

How about you? Have you been to any interesting writing conferences this year? Or other destinations you’d like to tell us about?

Jodie Renner has published two books to date in her series, An Editor’s Guide to Writing Compelling Fiction: Writing a Killer Thriller and Fire up Your Fiction (Style That Sizzles & Pacing for Power), which has won two book awards so far. Look for the third book in the series, out soon. For more info, please visit Jodie’s author website or editor website, her other blogs, The Kill Zone and Resources for Writers, or find her on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+. And sign up for her newsletter.


  1. Jodie, it sounds like you had a lot of fun and spent time with some invigorating writers! The smile on your face says it all.

    Of course your presentations were well attended! You have a lot to share.

    (Beth Terrell is one of the best people around. I'm glad you got to meet her.)

  2. It was just awesome, Peg! Stimulating and fun! And Beth Terrell is truly amazing! She had a huge job organizing that conference and pulled it off very successfully, and the smile never left her face all weekend!

  3. Looks like you had a great time, Jodie! So glad it was such a great experience for you!


    1. Thanks, Angela! My own presentation went so much better than I thought it would!

  4. You rock! Thanks for sharing.

    I just got back from a great conference put on by Thomas & Mercer for its authors. I'll blog about it Friday.

    1. Thanks, LJ! I look forward to hearing all about your Amazon conference in Seattle!

  5. I must say that I do believe that I picked the right conference for a first conference. Killer Nashville really exceeded all my expectations. You are correct, Jodie. I was stimulating and fun and I enjoyed sitting next to you at one session and attending the two that you were involved in presenting.

  6. Thanks, Ricky! I look forward to reading your book(s) someday!

  7. I'm heading for Bouchercon next month. It'll be my first time there, so I am going in as a newbie. I also attended ThrillerFest for my first time last July. That was quite an event. Then, in October, I'm going to my second Novelist, Inc. conference. A totally different focus--it's for published authors and addresses the business side of the industry.

    Terry's Place

  8. Looks like you had fun, Jodie, and added a lot to the conference. One of these days, I'd love to attend one of your presentations.

  9. Thanks, Jenny! I got a bunch of awesome reviews of my presentation on POV and have posted them up at my author website at

  10. My schedule and budget doesn't allow me to attend writer's conferences these days. (Grandchildren come first.:) So I really appreciate reports like this, Jodie. Gives me a feeling of "being there." I know it's not the same, but the energy and camaraderie come through.

    I'm so glad your presentations were a success. I hope you recorded the panels - or someone did. They make great podcasts and help with the P.R.

    Like the others here, I'm not surprised your presentations went well - better than expected. You have the expertise and experience and deserve to share it.


    1. Thank you so much for your kind words, David! I'm gaining confidence with public speaking and finding it fun! Apparently they recorded the sessions, so I'm hoping to get an audio recording of each. Maybe I can somehow break them down into sound bytes for...? my website...? Not sure, as it's only audio, no visual to go with it.

  11. Jodie, I heard great things about your presentation and also about the self-editing panel you were on with Carolyn Mulford and Christina Wilburn. Thank you for your presence, your kind words, and especially for sharing your knowledge with others. I hope to hear that presentation myself soon.

    (And I would love to meet any of you who are going to Bouchercon in a few weeks.)

  12. Thanks, Jaden/Beth! You and Clay and the rest of the crew did a fabulous job organizing Killer Nashville! And thanks for being such a great moderator for our panel on revision and self-editing!

    I'm already looking forward to Killer Nashville next year!


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