October 17, 2018 I got the call (as I was entering Home Depot) that my book was accepted for publication by Morgan James Publishing (MJP)! I had been in contact with Karen Anderson, MJP Associate Publisher, since January about my book and the work I still needed to do. So when she called me that day, it felt like a giant leap forward in getting my book, Discovering My Scars, into the world!
Fast forward over a year later, with my book now in hand and book to be released to the public January 2020, I got an email about the MJP Next Level training event.
I liked the idea of going, but it was a big commitment in terms of time, four days of training and travel, as well as the expense involved. To help me decide, I contacted Emily Bernath, another MJP author, to get her thoughts on the event. After talking to her, I decided to attend!
I was pretty nervous when I headed down to the event from my hotel room. I didn’t know anyone who would be there, and what kind of training it would be.
Right away, I saw friendly faces and nice people came to sit at my table. We all introduced ourselves at the table and I felt like I was with “my people.”
As an introvert, I don’t gain energy by being around a lot of new people, and being shy, I find it challenging to just go up to people and start a conversation. So, I didn’t venture too far outside of my table, but did make some good connections and for some reason, I got the nerve to talk to someone at the sink in the bathroom!
There were 8 sessions, each about 90 minutes long. I very much appreciated the hot tea available all day to keep me going (and warm, hotel session rooms always seem to be cold)!
Overall, I took lots of notes, felt inspired, learned a lot, and felt encouraged to keep moving forward with marketing my book. I did not connect to all the speakers, and did not appreciate some of the pitches for services the speakers offered, but I did get a lot of out the training.
Most of all, I connected with many MJP authors, in person, and have begun to cultivate a network of resources in my industry.
Would I go again?
Maybe. It was a lot of information, and I am still going through my notes to implement some of the ideas. I could see myself going once a year, or every few years for new best-practices and fresh inspiration.
I wish there had been an opportunity for everyone to introduce themselves, especially so we could identify books that might be in the same genre as ours.
I would have also liked a breakout session or two for the attendees to work together on ideas we learned in the sessions.
I also think it would have been nice to have a small easel at each seat for the authors to put their book on in front of them. That way we could put a face to the book, and vice versa.
Lastly, I got to meet Karen Anderson in person, hand her my finished book, and thank her for being a driving force in getting my book published!
If you are considering going to the Next Level conference and have any questions, feel free to