I still have some important tasks.
I’m back home, but I still have work to do. Late Sunday, after a ten-hour drive, I unloaded the car, unpacked my bags, and went to bed early.
But I still haven’t completed my obligations to the writers conference. Yesterday morning, to make sure I didn’t miss anything, I made a short list.
I’ve already written three thank-you notes: to the conference directors, to the person who hosted me and another faculty member for three nights, and to someone who gave me a solid lead for a potential client.
But I’m still not done. Before I put away my folders for the three classes I taught, I should update some material, based on the latest comments. And I’ve promised to email copies of handouts to people in one class that drew double the expected attendance.
If I’d attended the conference as a camper, I’d remind myself that if I really wanted to remember the points from all the classes, I’d retype my session notes into my computer. That way I’d have a second interaction while the information—and my handwriting—is still relatively fresh.
I know I kept receipts for all my travel expenses and meals en route. But I’m not sure I’ve found all of them yet. Once I do, I need to tally them in my spreadsheet and put all the originals in a folder. April 15th is still five months away, but I want to be ready.
Being moderately obsessive, I keep a computerized list of the clothing, equipment, and sundries I take to a conference. To make sure I’m on top of things for next time, I really should make a note to take again my newest backpack and the 12-cup coffee maker instead of that 4-cup model. And also a note that for a cross-country trip, nibbling Corn Nuts can be less messy than pretzels.
Your list of post-conference must-do’s will likely differ. If you attend as a camper, I hope it includes thanking the editors and agents with whom you had appointments, clarifying any details about their request to send a proposal or manuscript, then following through and actually sending that material.