Whats up with writing conferences during all this COVID-19 madness?
Believing about going to an online composing conference? Heres 5 huge factors theyre helpful and fresh.
Up until the pandemic hit, writing conferences acted as a smart place for writers to find out new skills and network with authors, representatives and publishers for almost 100 years.
Theres another section of conference organizers scrambling to develop a replacement. Out of the woeful ashes of canceled hotel bookings and scrapped airline company flights online composing conferences are emerging.
Heres the important things … In order for online composing conferences to prosper, organizers have to determine new ways to make it worthwhile for everyone included. And its occurring.
How does something like that even work?
And why would freelancers desire to attend an online event without the in-person advantages of conventional writing conferences?
If youre a freelance author in 2020, attending a new digital conference in the COVID-era may show to be among the best opportunities for you in years.
Now what? Some writing conferences have actually simply disappeared, while others have accepted 2021, because its too dangerous to satisfy in individual right now.
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 blends elements of the X-Files and Unsolved Mysteries.
Hes likewise part of the group hosting the online Willamette Writers Conference July 31 to Aug. 2.
When he is not writing, he takes pleasure in a great cold craft beer, baseball, a little bit of travel, dungeon crawling with his parlor game group, and investing quality time with his wife and boy.
Thinking of attending an online writing conference? Heres his leading 5 factors to go:
1. Online writing conferences are more economical
Organizations around the nation are slashing admissions. A conference that used to cost $600 now hovers around $300. And thats good news for writers.
In between travel, admission 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.
On average, online writing conferences are going to be far more affordable for organizations to put on. Eliminate the area fees, catering and faculty travel, the costs of putting on the affair are halved.
Not any more though..
Theres potential to get a lot more value.
Traditional writing conferences can get pretty costly.
2. Virtual conferences draw more representatives … of a higher caliber.
Working for the 2019 Willamette Writers Conference, I saw how challenging it was for authors to set up visits with representatives, publishers, and managers.
Were talking about some of the busiest people in the market. For them, making an in-person, three-day conference in Portland, Ore., was a genuine obstacle.
Without travel and accommodations barriers, composing conferences are already seeing an increased number of agents, supervisors, publishers registering to participate in, and that suggests more access and opportunities for authors.
The barriers are gone.
Publishers, managers and representatives can take pitches from their home offices.
They can teach classes from their back deck.
Do we fly someone out for one day so they can take pitches? Every agent and supervisor needed significant manpower and a deep financial outlay.
Well, in 2020, that problem disappears.
The problem reserving somebody for a single day is among both cash and logistics.
” Maybe one day?” They would state.
3. Light conference presence enhances the experience for writers.
That is a hard truth for most organizations to swallow. For them, the conference is a considerable generator of income, most likely what keeps them running throughout the year.
Ive been to a dozen conferences and often pitches with the best agents are scheduled out weeks beforehand, leaving everyone else in the lurch.
On one hand, fewer authors realistically indicates less chances to network with fellow participants.
More industry experts.
Much better industry professionals.
A lower variety of participants will cause less competition for networking time with those searched for market experts.
Its like going to Disneyland in winter season. Youll get to see so much more due to the fact that the lines are so much shorter.
In spite of the lower costs and less barriers, conference presence will definitely be down in 2020. Some price quotes say that numbers will be cut in half.
OK, I get that. Consider the previous points:.
Lower participation is a boon to authors though. Why?
If there is an agent or a publishing business that youre targeting, this is the year to attend the conference where theyre taking pitches.
4. Virtual composing conferences are more accessible.
And thats what readers are hungry for– more distinct voices.
There are a few obvious factors for that:.
Online composing conferences open the experience up larger than ever before to:.
Individuals with developmental and physical impairments.
Writers from lower-income families.
Individuals experiencing social stress and anxiety.
Theyre (for the most part) held in bigger cities and can be physically strenuous. I know Im tired whenever I end up the three-day grind.
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 back. Year in and year out, I was seeing the very same faces.
Without the long hours navigating an airport hotel, there is factor to believe the composing world will open for these special voices.
Conferences are costly, as discussed above.
5. Online writing conferences streamline networking.
Sound familiar? In the virtual conference world, some of that hangover will go away.
Embrace the change of online composing conferences to grow.
Business 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 navigate to calling or emailing a few of them.
The scene is a familiar one.
Youre waiting in a conference lunch line. You strike up a discussion with somebody over the chafing dish. Theyre interesting. Something youre working on has them excited.
Then you sit down, exchange business cards and … its over.
It is a Pollyanna notion to think that a virtual writers conference can properly change the real thing. The service is not perfect by any stretch.
While all of us battle with how to bridge the gap in between the world before and the one were all headed towards, we ought to remember to look at the changes prior to us as opportunities.
We are not living in ideal times. Far from it, really.
Youre both on a computer when you meet 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 discussion.
2020 may simply be your big one to go up and earn more as a freelance author.
What do you believe about online writing conferences? Leave a comment and inform us about it.
I have worked for the Willamette Writers Conference in Portland for the last three years and participated in 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 home with a stack of a hundred cards, and I possibly get around to calling or emailing a few of them.
Erick Mertz is a ghostwriter, author, and editor from Portland, Ore. Hes likewise part of the team hosting the virtual 2020 Willamette Writers Conference..
And thats great news for writers.