Packing is always a daunting task, at least for me. Which shirt should I bring? Will I need my blow dryer? Should I bring my own shampoo?
Of course I always forget something. Grr! Which makes it doubly important when packing for something, like, say, a writer's conference, to have in mind everything you'll need.
Did you sign up for any specific classes? If so, is there anything special you need for those? For example, do you need six copies of the first ten pages of your manuscript? Double-spaced? Do you need your laptop? A hard copy of your query letter? Make sure you've got everything you need for you classes.
Are there any special events? Like, a formal dinner? Don't forget your nice clothing. And your perfume, your gum, your shoes, whatever floats your boat!
Did you pack your business cards? Don't forget them! You ordered them for a reason! Make sure you have them on hand when you meet people. They're like the grown up version of friendship bracelets!
Did you bring writing samples? This goes along with always being prepared. You don't know who you might meet. Of course you can always get an email address and send a sample later, but if you've got it on hand, it's better, right?
Do you have a pitch session? If you do, you need more than just a writing sample and a business card. Bring along an updated resume, also.
Did you remember your Sunday bag--I mean, big bag? If you're flying, chances are this is your carry on, so you've got it. This is bigger than a purse (for most of us, anyway). It's got everything. Your laptop, your cards, your writing samples--and your purse. This is also where you'll put everything you pick up--brochures, cards, books!
Do you have cash? You're going to meet authors selling books. Some might take check, most won't take credit card. If you plan on buying, don't forget to bring your cash!
Do you have a notebook? You're going to take notes, of course. Whether it's your laptop or something like that, make sure you've got a way to take notes on what everyone says!
Are you going to get hungry in between meals? AKA, are you pregnant? Then make sure you bring some goodies to munch on! Nothing worse than being unable to focus on the speaker because you're so hungry!
Is your pitch ready? This isn't something you pack, of course, but practice! For your camera, your spouse, your dog. Make it smooth.
Do you have specific questions? Think about when you're going to ask them. Write them down if you're afraid you'll forget at the last moment.
Are you prone to headaches? Don't forget the tylenol!
Are you bringing your cell phone? Then don't forget the charger! You'd hate to have a huge list of phone calls to make and then have to use the hotel phone!
Am I forgetting anything important??? I'm so stoked! This is going to be awesome. Flight leaves tomorrow, folks, so you probably won't see me for a few days! Unless you see me in person at the conference! :)
(ideas gathered from: resources for writers, the adventurous writer, and myself.)