Whats up with writing conferences throughout all this COVID-19 madness?
However how does something like that even work?
And why would freelancers wish to attend an online event without the in-person advantages of standard composing conferences?
Attending a new digital conference in the COVID-era might show to be one of the finest chances for you in years if youre a freelance author in 2020.
Believing about going to an online writing conference? Heres 5 big factors theyre helpful and fresh.
Up until the pandemic hit, composing conferences worked as a smart location for authors to learn brand-new skills and network with authors, agents and publishers for almost 100 years.
Heres the important things … In order for online composing conferences to prosper, organizers need to figure out brand-new ways to make it worthwhile for everybody involved. And its taking place.
Now what? Some writing conferences have simply disappeared, while others have actually accepted 2021, due to the fact that its too dangerous to fulfill personally today.
Theres another segment of conference organizers rushing to formulate a replacement. Out of the woeful ashes of canceled hotel appointments and scrapped airline flights online composing conferences are emerging.
Meet writing-conference organizer Erick Mertz
When he is not writing, he enjoys a great cold craft beer, baseball, a bit of travel, dungeon crawling with his parlor game group, and investing quality time with his partner and son.
Hes also part of the team hosting the online Willamette Writers Conference July 31 to Aug. 2.
Erick Mertz is a ghostwriter and editor from Portland, Ore. Hes also the author of The Strange Air. A book series of paranormal mysteries that mixes elements of the X-Files and Unsolved Mysteries.
Thinking about attending an online composing conference? Heres his top 5 factors to go:
1. Online writing conferences are more cost effective
Theres potential to get a lot more bang for your buck.
Traditional writing conferences can get quite costly.
Not any more though..
On average, online composing conferences are going to be far cheaper for organizations to place on. Take away the place costs, catering and faculty travel, the expenses of putting on the affair are cut in half.
Organizations around the nation are slashing admissions. A conference that used to cost $600 now hovers around $300. And thats good news for writers.
Between travel, lodging and admission expenses, and all of those add-ons (Who doesnt purchase an arm load of books?), you might easily pay upwards of $1,000 to participate in an in-person event.
2. Virtual conferences draw more representatives … of a greater caliber.
The barriers are gone.
Agents, publishers and supervisors can take pitches from their office.
They can teach classes from their back deck.
Do we fly somebody out for one day so they can take pitches? Every agent and manager needed significant manpower and a deep financial outlay.
Well, in 2020, that problem is no more.
Were discussing some of the busiest individuals in the industry. For them, making an in-person, three-day conference in Portland, Ore., was a genuine challenge.
” Maybe one day?” They would state.
Working for the 2019 Willamette Writers Conference, I saw how tough it was for writers to arrange visits with publishers, representatives, and managers.
The difficulty scheduling someone for a single day is among both cash and logistics.
Without travel and lodging barriers, composing conferences are currently seeing an increased number of representatives, managers, publishers registering to attend, which implies more access and opportunities for authors.
3. Light conference attendance improves the experience for writers.
In spite of the lower costs and less barriers, conference attendance will certainly be down in 2020. Some estimates state that numbers will be cut in half.
If there is an agent or a publishing company that youre targeting, this is the year to participate in the conference where theyre taking pitches.
OK, I get that. Think about the previous points:.
More market professionals.
Much better market specialists.
A lower variety of guests will result in less competition for networking time with those demanded market experts.
Lower attendance is an advantage to authors though. Why?
Ive been to a lots conferences and frequently pitches with the very best representatives are booked out weeks beforehand, leaving everybody else in the stumble.
On one hand, less writers logically means fewer opportunities to network with fellow attendees.
Its like going to Disneyland in winter season. Youll get to see a lot more due to the fact that the lines are so much shorter.
That is a tough reality for a lot of companies to swallow. For them, the conference is a significant generator of profits, probably what keeps them running throughout the year.
4. Virtual writing conferences are more accessible.
There are a couple of apparent factors for that:.
Theyre (for the many part) kept in bigger cities and can be physically rigorous. I know Im exhausted every time I finish the three-day grind.
Conferences are pricey, as talked about above.
I have worked for the Willamette Writers Conference in Portland for the last three years and attended for 12. Something struck me a long period of time ago. Year in and year out, I was seeing the same faces.
Online composing conferences open the experience up larger than ever before to:.
Whichs what readers are hungry for– more distinct voices.
Without the long hours browsing an airport hotel, there is reason to think the composing world will open for these distinct voices.
Individuals with physical and developmental disabilities.
Writers from lower-income households.
People experiencing social anxiety.
5. Online writing conferences simplify networking.
Youre both on a computer when you meet another attendee in the virtual chat room. All of your e-mail and social media are right there to forge a deeper, longer-term connection with that fascinating conversation.
It is a Pollyanna concept to think that a virtual authors conference can effectively change the genuine thing. The solution is not perfect by any stretch.
We are not living in perfect times. Far from it, actually.
Business card hangover. Ive had it a hundred times. At the end of a long three days, I get home with a stack of a hundred cards, and I possibly get around to calling or emailing a few of them.
Sound familiar? In the virtual conference world, a few of that hangover will go away.
While we all struggle with how to bridge the gap between the world prior to and the one were all headed toward, we should keep in mind to take a look at the changes before us as opportunities.
Embrace the modification of online writing conferences to grow.
The scene is a familiar one.
Youre waiting in a conference lunch line. Something youre working on has them delighted.
Then you sit down, exchange organisation cards and … its over.
2020 might just be your big one to go up and make more as a freelance writer.
And thats great news for writers.
Erick Mertz is a ghostwriter, author, and editor from Portland, Ore. Hes likewise part of the group hosting the virtual 2020 Willamette Writers Conference..
I have actually worked for the Willamette Writers Conference in Portland for the last 3 years and went to 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 3 days, I come house with a stack of a hundred cards, and I perhaps get around to calling or emailing a few of them.
What do you consider online composing conferences? Leave a comment and tell us about it.