Whats up with writing conferences during all this COVID-19 insaneness?
Heres the thing … In order for online writing conferences to succeed, organizers need to determine new ways to make it rewarding for everyone included. And its happening.
Theres another segment of conference organizers scrambling to create a replacement. Out of the woeful ashes of canceled hotel appointments and scrapped airline flights online composing conferences are emerging.
Now what? Some writing conferences have just disappeared, while others have actually delayed to 2021, because its too dangerous to satisfy personally today.
Considering participating in an online composing conference? Heres 5 big reasons theyre fresh and helpful.
But how does something like that even work?
And why would freelancers wish to go to an online occasion without the in-person advantages of conventional writing conferences?
Until the pandemic hit, writing conferences served as a clever location for writers to find out new abilities and network with authors, representatives and publishers for practically 100 years.
If youre a freelance author in 2020, participating in a new digital conference in the COVID-era may prove to be among the best opportunities for you in years.
Meet writing-conference organizer Erick Mertz
Hes likewise part of the group hosting the online Willamette Writers Conference July 31 to Aug. 2.
When he is not writing, he enjoys a good cold craft beer, baseball, a bit of travel, dungeon crawling with his parlor game group, and investing quality time with his wife and kid.
Erick Mertz is a ghostwriter and editor from Portland, Ore. Hes likewise the author of The Strange Air. A book series of paranormal mysteries that blends elements of the X-Files and Unsolved Mysteries.
Thinking about attending an online composing conference? Heres his leading 5 factors to go:
1. Online writing conferences are more cost effective
In between travel, accommodations and admission expenses, 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.
Theres potential to get a lot more value.
Typically, online composing conferences are going to be far cheaper for companies to put on. Remove the area charges, catering and professors travel, the costs 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.
Conventional writing conferences can get pretty expensive.
Not any more though..
2. Virtual conferences draw more representatives … of a greater quality.
The problem booking someone for a single day is one of both money and logistics.
Do we fly someone out for one day so they can take pitches? Every agent and supervisor required substantial manpower and a deep financial investment.
Well, in 2020, that problem is no more.
Were discussing some of the busiest people in the industry. For them, making an in-person, three-day conference in Portland, Ore., was a real difficulty.
” Maybe one day?” They would say.
Working for the 2019 Willamette Writers Conference, I saw how difficult it was for authors to set up consultations with supervisors, agents, and publishers.
Without travel and accommodations barriers, composing conferences are currently seeing an increased number of agents, supervisors, publishers registering to participate in, which means more access and chances for authors.
The barriers are gone.
Agents, managers and publishers can take pitches from their office.
They can teach classes from their back deck.
3. Light conference presence enhances the experience for authors.
In spite of the lower costs and fewer barriers, conference participation will definitely be down in 2020. Some price quotes state that numbers will be cut in half.
Lower attendance is an advantage to writers. Why?
OK, I get that. Think about the previous points:.
If there is a representative or a publishing company that youre targeting, this is the year to participate in the conference where theyre taking pitches.
Its like going to Disneyland in winter season. Youll get to see so much more since the lines are so much shorter.
On one hand, fewer authors rationally suggests less chances to network with fellow guests.
That is a hard reality for many organizations to swallow. For them, the conference is a substantial generator of revenue, most likely what keeps them running throughout the year.
Ive been to a lots conferences and often pitches with the very best representatives are reserved out weeks ahead of time, leaving everyone else in the stumble.
More industry specialists.
Much better market specialists.
A lower number of participants will result in less competitors for networking time with those sought after industry specialists.
4. Virtual composing conferences are more available.
Theyre (for the most part) held in bigger cities and can be physically strenuous. I understand Im exhausted whenever I end up the three-day grind.
Conferences are costly, as talked about above.
Individuals with physical and developmental specials needs.
Writers from lower-income homes.
Individuals experiencing social anxiety.
And thats what readers are hungry for– more distinct voices.
There are a couple of obvious factors for that:.
I have worked for the Willamette Writers Conference in Portland for the last three years and participated in for 12. Something struck me a long period of time ago. Year in and year out, I was seeing the exact same faces.
Without the long hours browsing an airport hotel, there is factor to think the writing world will open for these distinct voices.
Online composing conferences open the experience up wider than ever before to:.
5. Online writing conferences streamline networking.
However we are not living in perfect times. Far from it, actually.
The scene is a familiar one.
Sound familiar? In the virtual conference world, some of that hangover will go away.
Youre both on a computer when you meet another participant in the virtual chat room. All of your e-mail and social media are right there to forge a much deeper, longer-term connection with that intriguing discussion.
Youre waiting in a conference lunch line. Something youre working on has them delighted.
You sit down, exchange organisation cards and … its over.
It is a Pollyanna idea to believe that a virtual writers conference can effectively change the real thing. The solution is not ideal by any stretch.
While all of us battle with how to bridge the space in between the world before and the one were all headed toward, we must remember to look at the changes prior to us as opportunities.
Embrace the change of online writing conferences to grow.
Company card hangover. Ive had it a hundred times. At the end of a long 3 days, I get back with a stack of a hundred cards, and I possibly get around to calling or emailing a few of them.
2020 may just be your big one to move up and earn more as a freelance writer.
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.
Erick Mertz is a ghostwriter, author, and editor from Portland, Ore. Hes also 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 same faces.
What do you consider online writing conferences? Leave a comment and inform us about it.
And thats great news for writers.