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What not to wear (Florida Writers Conference edition)

October 15, 2013

It’s time to pack, so now you’re stuck. What in the world should you wear to the writer’s conference? Your tux might seem a little ostentatious, unless you’re James Bond. And the leopard-print skin-tight leggings might send the wrong message.

So as you pack, keep the following things in mind:

  • You’re going to an extended business meeting. Even if you’re attending your first conference, the people you meet this year might be the same people you want to do business with next year. Whatever you wear should show your style–unless you’re the guy above–but it should also be business casual.
  • You’ll be sitting in set of hotel conference rooms for a lot of the weekend. You should wear something comfortable and bring a sweater or jacket in case you’re cold.
  • You’ll probably be attending the RPLA banquet Saturday night. If so, you’ll want something a little dressier. A skinny tie is always appropriate. Or a comfortable, but classy dress.

  • For the rest of the weekend, wear what works for you and is comfortable. Hawaiian shirts are also always appropriate (and to the extent they aren’t, the world is broken). Unless you’re kind of crazy and plan on getting arrested.

  • For women, skirts or comfortable pants are fine, and though you may feel internal pressure to wear heels, I don’t figure it’s required (you’re going to be walking from session to session). But I’m a guy and I never understood the appeal of heels anyway.

Cute (I think), but not required for the conference.

Overall, there’s not an overall dress code. In general, dress presentably. After all, you’ll want to look good when you get that contract offer from the agent of your dreams.


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