Dear Miss Snark,I just signed up for my first Writers' Conference (in NYC) and am terrified about making a good impression--what do writers generally wear to these sort of things?
This is like visiting the reptile house. They're as afraid of you as you are of them. Honest.
First, this is New York in April. It's going to be wet and cold. And we walk everywhere so bring your brolly and your walking shoes. This is NOT the day to break in new sneaks. Bring your comfy ones. Every woman in New York carries a purse and a bag. The bag has our shoes. We change on the street, in the elevator or under our desks.
Second, at this particular writing conference you'll be up and down marble stairs all day long. This is NOT the day for a business suit or a skirt. Wear pants. And comfy ones. And sturdy ones. This is not the day for delicate silk. This is a dirty town and this conference is in a building with a library and a school, so the dust and general grime is a fact of life. In fact, I'm there at least once a month and I don't even think about it till I look at my mittens and wonder what the HELL I grabbed onto.
No one is expecting you to turn up in business casual. Jeans and sweater will do just fine. If your t-shirt just happens to say "I heart Killer Yapp"
well, so much the better.
And it's not your clothes that will impress us. It's your calm confidence, your cheerful smile, and that you laugh at our jokes when you attend a panel.
Relax, have fun, and don't forget that MoMA (53rd Street @Fifth Ave) is just a few blocks away. And Grand Central (42nd and Mad Ave) is still one of the most amazing places to see in NYC. (Thank you eternally to Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis who spearheaded the drive to save the building as a national landmark).(love the art-thanks Stuart!)