Whats up with composing conferences during all this COVID-19 craziness?
Until the pandemic hit, writing conferences worked as a smart place for authors to learn brand-new abilities and network with authors, agents and publishers for practically 100 years.
Now what? Some composing conferences have actually merely disappeared, while others have actually delayed to 2021, due to the fact that its too hazardous to meet face to face right now.
Considering going to an online composing conference? Heres five big factors theyre helpful and fresh.
Going to a brand-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.
However how does something like that even work?
And why would freelancers wish to attend an online occasion without the in-person advantages of traditional writing conferences?
Heres the important things … In order for online composing conferences to be successful, organizers need to determine new ways to make it rewarding for everyone included. And its happening.
Theres another segment of conference organizers rushing to develop a replacement. Out of the woeful ashes of canceled hotel reservations and ditched airline company flights online composing conferences are emerging.
Meet writing-conference organizer Erick Mertz
Erick Mertz is a ghostwriter and editor from Portland, Ore. Hes also the author of The Strange Air. A book series of paranormal secrets that mixes aspects of the X-Files and Unsolved Mysteries.
When he is not writing, he takes pleasure in a nice cold craft beer, baseball, a bit of travel, dungeon crawling with his parlor game group, and spending quality time with his spouse and boy.
Hes also part of the group hosting the online Willamette Writers Conference July 31 to Aug. 2.
Thinking of participating in an online writing conference? Heres his top 5 reasons to go:
1. Online composing conferences are more inexpensive
Not any more though..
Organizations around the nation are slashing admissions. A conference that utilized to cost $600 now hovers around $300. And thats excellent news for authors.
In between admission, travel and accommodations costs, and all of those add-ons (Who does not purchase an arm load of books?), you might easily pay upwards of $1,000 to go to an in-person occasion.
Theres potential to get a lot more bang for your buck.
Typically, online composing conferences are going to be far more affordable for organizations to put on. Take away the area charges, catering and faculty travel, the costs of placing on the affair are halved.
Traditional composing conferences can get pretty expensive.
2. Virtual conferences draw more representatives … of a higher quality.
The difficulty scheduling somebody for a single day is among both cash and logistics.
Working for the 2019 Willamette Writers Conference, I saw how hard it was for writers to arrange visits with agents, publishers, and managers.
Well, in 2020, that issue disappears.
Do we fly somebody out for one day so they can take pitches? Every agent and manager needed considerable manpower and a deep monetary outlay.
The barriers are gone.
Managers, representatives and publishers can take pitches from their office.
They can teach classes from their back deck.
Were talking about a few of the busiest people in the industry. For them, making an in-person, three-day conference in Portland, Ore., was a genuine challenge.
Without travel and lodging barriers, writing conferences are currently seeing an increased number of representatives, supervisors, publishers registering to attend, and that indicates more access and opportunities for writers.
” Maybe one day?” They would say.
3. Light conference attendance improves the experience for writers.
This is the year to attend the conference where theyre taking pitches if there is a publishing or a representative business that youre targeting.
On one hand, fewer writers rationally indicates less opportunities to network with fellow attendees.
That is a hard reality for many companies to swallow. For them, the conference is a considerable generator of profits, most likely what keeps them running throughout the year.
Ive been to a lots conferences and frequently pitches with the very best agents are booked out weeks ahead of time, leaving everybody else in the lurch.
OK, I get that. Think about the previous points:.
Its like going to Disneyland in winter season. Since the lines are so much shorter, youll get to see so much more.
Lower attendance is an advantage to writers. Why?
In spite of the lower costs and less barriers, conference attendance will definitely be down in 2020. Some estimates state that numbers will be cut in half.
More industry specialists.
Better market professionals.
A lower number of participants will cause less competition for networking time with those searched for industry experts.
4. Virtual composing conferences are more available.
Online writing conferences open the experience up broader than ever before to:.
I have actually worked for the Willamette Writers Conference in Portland for the last three years and went to for 12. Something struck me a long period of time ago. Year in and year out, I was seeing the very same faces.
Without the long hours browsing an airport hotel, there is factor to believe the composing world will open for these special voices.
And thats what readers are hungry for– more distinct voices.
There are a few obvious factors for that:.
Conferences are expensive, as talked about above.
Theyre (for the a lot of part) held in bigger cities and can be physically rigorous. I know Im tired each time I finish the three-day grind.
People with physical and developmental impairments.
Writers from lower-income homes.
People experiencing social anxiety.
5. Online writing conferences simplify networking.
Business card hangover. Ive had it a hundred times. At the end of a long three days, I get back with a stack of a hundred cards, and I possibly get around to calling or emailing a few of them.
It is a Pollyanna idea to think that a virtual authors conference can adequately replace the real thing. The solution is not ideal by any stretch.
We are not living in perfect times. Far from it, really.
While we all battle with how to bridge the gap between the world prior to and the one were all headed toward, we must remember to take a look at the changes before us as chances.
The scene is a familiar one.
Youre waiting in a conference lunch line. Something youre working on has them thrilled.
You sit down, exchange service cards and … its over.
Youre both on a computer when you fulfill another attendee in the virtual chat space. All of your email and social media are right there to forge a much deeper, longer-term connection with that interesting conversation.
Welcome the change of online writing conferences to grow.
Sound familiar? In the virtual conference world, a few of that hangover will disappear.
2020 might just be your huge one to go up and earn more as a freelance writer.
What do you think of online composing conferences? Leave a comment and tell us about it.
I have 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.
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 great news for writers.
Youre waiting in a conference lunch line. At the end of a long 3 days, I come home with a stack of a hundred cards, and I maybe get around to calling or emailing a few of them.