Hey guys! Today I wanted to touch on a quick subject which bothers me on occasion. I often hear authors say something long the lines of "You must go to a writer's conference". Why does this bother me? Because not everyone can.
Obviously, right now no one is going much of anywhere, as it should be, but hopefully next year and beyond, there will be in-person conferences again. When it opens up, please keep in mind that there are many reasons a person might not be able to go to a conference, anywhere from time, money, to social anxiety.
In 2019 there was a conference I had some basic plans to attend. It was close by and didn't cost all that much money for the ticket. I could've driven there, only needed to stay one night, and then driven back the next day. Even still, it was a lot of money for me, and in the end the cost, and some other reasons, meant I didn't go.
Then the world changed, and lots of conferences went to an online format, which was a huge boon. I've been to a couple of them, because they solve the issue of travel, and they were also free.
Of course, having never been to a physical one, I can't attest to how helpful they are. Perhaps the networking and pitching in person is a great boost. Still, I'd please ask everyone to keep in mind it's not a thing everyone can do. Be sensitive. Don't make it seem like if you don't go to one, you're not a real author, or you'll have no chance in the business.
Having the time, money, and mental fortitude to go to a place filled with other people, putting yourself out there, talking about your WIP to strangers, strangers who will judge the project you've put your blood, sweat, and tears into, is a great privilege.