Whats up with composing conferences during all this COVID-19 insaneness?
But theres another segment of conference organizers rushing to formulate a replacement. Out of the woeful ashes of canceled hotel reservations and ditched airline flights online writing conferences are emerging.
Now what? Some composing conferences have just vanished, while others have deferred to 2021, because its too harmful to fulfill in person today.
Thinking about going to an online writing conference? Heres five huge factors theyre useful and fresh.
If youre a freelance author in 2020, going to a new digital conference in the COVID-era may show to be one of the best chances for you in years.
Heres the thing … In order for online writing conferences to be successful, organizers have to determine brand-new ways to make it beneficial for everybody included. And its taking place.
Until the pandemic hit, composing conferences served as a wise place for writers to discover new skills and network with authors, representatives and publishers for almost 100 years.
How does something like that even work?
And why would freelancers wish to attend an online event without the in-person advantages of traditional composing conferences?
Meet writing-conference organizer Erick Mertz
Erick Mertz is a ghostwriter and editor from Portland, Ore. Hes likewise the author of The Strange Air. A book series of paranormal secrets that mixes components of the X-Files and Unsolved Mysteries.
Hes likewise part of the team hosting the online Willamette Writers Conference July 31 to Aug. 2.
When he is not composing, he enjoys a good cold craft beer, baseball, a little bit of travel, dungeon crawling with his board game group, and spending quality time with his spouse and child.
Considering attending an online composing conference? Heres his top 5 reasons to go:
1. Online writing conferences are more budget-friendly
Conventional writing conferences can get quite expensive.
On average, online writing conferences are going to be far cheaper for organizations to put on. Eliminate the area charges, catering and faculty travel, the expenses of placing on the affair are halved.
Organizations around the nation are slashing admissions. A conference that used to cost $600 now hovers around $300. Whichs great news for authors.
Not any more though..
Theres capacity to get a lot more bang for your dollar.
In between lodging, travel and admission costs, and all of those add-ons (Who does not purchase an arm load of books?), you could quickly pay upwards of $1,000 to participate in an in-person event.
2. Virtual conferences draw more agents … of a higher caliber.
” Maybe one day?” They would say.
Without travel and lodging barriers, composing conferences are currently seeing an increased number of agents, managers, publishers signing up to participate in, and that indicates more access and chances for authors.
The barriers are gone.
Agents, publishers and managers can take pitches from their home offices.
They can teach classes from their back deck.
Working for the 2019 Willamette Writers Conference, I saw how hard it was for authors to set up appointments with supervisors, agents, and publishers.
Well, in 2020, that issue disappears.
Do we fly someone out for one day so they can take pitches? Every representative and supervisor needed significant manpower and a deep monetary outlay.
Were discussing a few of the busiest people in the industry. For them, making an in-person, three-day conference in Portland, Ore., was a real challenge.
The trouble booking somebody for a single day is among both cash and logistics.
3. Light conference participation improves the experience for authors.
In spite of the lower expenses and less barriers, conference attendance will definitely be down in 2020. Some price quotes say that numbers will be cut in half.
Ive been to a lots conferences and frequently pitches with the finest agents are reserved out weeks in advance, leaving everybody else in the stumble.
OK, I get that. But consider the previous points:.
Lower participation is a boon to writers though. Why?
On one hand, less writers logically indicates less chances to network with fellow guests.
This is the year to go to the conference where theyre taking pitches if there is an agent or a publishing company that youre targeting.
That is a tough reality for a lot of organizations to swallow. For them, the conference is a significant generator of income, most likely what keeps them running throughout the year.
More market specialists.
Much better market specialists.
A lower variety of guests will lead to less competitors for networking time with those sought after market specialists.
Its like going to Disneyland in winter. Due to the fact that the lines are so much shorter, youll get to see so much more.
4. Virtual composing conferences are more available.
Individuals with developmental and physical specials needs.
Writers from lower-income homes.
Individuals experiencing social stress and anxiety.
There are a couple of apparent factors for that:.
I have worked for the Willamette Writers Conference in Portland for the last 3 years and participated in for 12. Something struck me a long period of time ago. Year in and year out, I was seeing the same faces.
Without the long hours navigating an airport hotel, there is reason to believe the composing world will open for these distinct voices.
Online composing conferences open the experience up broader than ever before to:.
Theyre (for the most part) kept in bigger cities and can be physically extensive. I understand Im tired whenever I complete the three-day grind.
Conferences are costly, as gone over above.
Whichs what readers are starving for– more unique voices.
5. Online writing conferences streamline networking.
Noise familiar? In the virtual conference world, a few of that hangover will disappear.
Youre both on a computer when you meet another guest in the virtual chat room. All of your e-mail and social networks are right there to forge a deeper, longer-term connection with that interesting conversation.
Organisation card hangover. Ive had it a hundred times. At the end of a long 3 days, I come house with a stack of a hundred cards, and I maybe get around to calling or emailing a few of them.
Accept the change of online composing conferences to grow.
It is a Pollyanna concept to think that a virtual authors conference can adequately change the real thing. The service is not perfect by any stretch.
Youre waiting in a conference lunch line. You strike up a conversation with someone over the chafing meal. Theyre interesting. Something youre dealing with has them delighted.
Then you take a seat, exchange service cards and … its over.
The scene is a familiar one.
However we are not living in perfect times. Vice versa, really.
While we all battle with how to bridge the gap between the world before and the one were all headed toward, we must keep in mind to look at the modifications prior to us as chances.
2020 may simply be your big one to go up and make more as a freelance author.
I have actually worked for the Willamette Writers Conference in Portland for the last three years and attended for 12. Year in and year out, I was seeing the exact same faces.
Youre waiting in a conference lunch line. At the end of a long three days, I come home with a stack of a hundred cards, and I maybe get around to calling or emailing a few of them.
What do you consider online writing conferences? Leave a comment and tell us about it.
Erick Mertz is a ghostwriter, author, and editor from Portland, Ore. Hes likewise part of the group hosting the virtual 2020 Willamette Writers Conference..
And thats good news for authors.