Wednesday, June 06, 2007

RBTE Conference: Would You Like to Speak?

It has been a little overwhelming to see the quantity and quality of publishing professionals (both writers and editors) who are interested in participating at this first conference of ours. To make it as fair as possible for everyone, here is how I propose we do it.

1. First, the bad news: Everyone -- speakers included -- will need to arrange and pay for their own accommodations and travel expenses to and from the conference. I wish we could afford to fly you all out first-class, but the truth is we're working (almost literally) on a shoestring. My goal is to make this conference as useful and as cost-effective as possible. That means that each person will need to contribute financially at least this much. Yes, even me.

2. Those who would like to give a talk (or would like to recommend someone else for a particular talk) are invited to submit a one-page list of "talking points" (one for each talk you have in mind). Be sure to include:
  • Title of talk
  • Experience level of target participant: beginners who need to know how to write a query, intermediates who have been published in some format, or advanced writers who are already supporting themselves with their writing but who want to learn more). (NOTE: Talks may appeal to more than one level of writer - if so, just say "all levels.")
  • Type of writer: authors of books, magazine articles, blogs, e-books, POD writers, etc.
  • Genre: inspirational/devotional, non-fiction, science fiction, chick lit, biography, etc.
  • What are three things participants will take away from your talk?
  • Brief bio (who you are and what your qualifications for this talk are -- professional background, publishing credits, etc.)

3. As soon as we get our website up and running, I will post all speaker submissions that I have received by September 1, and invite participants to vote for their top choices for different categories (fiction/non-fiction book publishing, magazine, marketing, etc.). Based on this feedback, Lisa, Karina, and I will make the final selection of speakers for the general sessions as well as breakout sessions for "niche" topics. We will then confirm the availability of each speaker, and post the results on the conference website.

4. In addition to these talks, we also plan to . . .

  • Give writers opportunities to talk with real, live editors (details to follow)
  • Arrange a pre-, post-, or extra-conference "road trip" so we can all enjoy a slice of real Chicago deep-dish
  • Hold a book signing and possibly a reading session for our published authors
  • Have a special parting gift for participants (details to follow)
  • Offer alternate (e.g. "less expensive") accommodation sites on the website

Questions or concerns? Contact me at

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