One of the nice things about the SCWW was the opportunity to eat dinner with an agent. Each evening, the dinner tables were hosted by a "faculty" member, and you could choose where to sit.
I found this to be a study in human behavior as well as very informative. :)
One night I sat with Diana Fox. What a character. Totally loved her personality, open mindedness (is that a word?), and straight forward attitude. She shared tips on pitch sessions, body posture, and natural healing.
Another night I sat with Susan Hawk. What a pleasant person! She was so kind and engaged everyone in conversation. We talked about favorite children's books, the publishing industry, and kids.
What did I learn from these dinners?
1. Be calm
2. Be yourself
3. Be polite
My advice for you if you get this opportunity?
1. Don't dominate the conversation. There are other people at the table. :)
2. Ask questions... not just about the industry and not just about the agent
3. LISTEN! and Learn.
Oh... I also learned that maybe I need a hearing aid! Sheesh. Years ago, (at different time) both my ear drums burst. So, I KNOW I have hearing loss, but boy-oh-boy did I struggle at these dinners! There was SO MUCH background noise (all those other authors and agents talking at their tables) I really struggled to hear anything that was said. Bummer. But, hey at least I can read lips (not). ha.
What the best piece of advice you have to share regarding talking with agents?