I’ve been asked to produce a seminar for other writers’ conference organizers to share methods for making it more cost-effective for speakers to participate where the organizer has no stipend or transportation budget. I am hearing that other organizers want speakers to come, fly themselves to and register to attend their event, pay for their own rooms, and pay a fee to sell their books or exhibit. The speakers may be granted a small percentage off, but it’s so minuscule that it’s insignificant. There is no real advantage for the speaker to participate from an ROI (return on investment) standpoint when the organizer’s mindset is essentially that the speaker is coming strictly to make the organizer’s event a success.
Based on the number of people I’ve heard this from, this misguided position is more common than I’d realized. Essentially these other organizers are forcing speakers to become a sponsor and acting as if they’re doing the SPEAKER a favor by ‘letting’ them speak. That’s real backward. The attitude should be one of gratitude that the speaker is interested in being involved. Recognize that their willingness to lend their time and energy to share knowledge and experience with fellow authors and aspiring writers is far bigger than you. Read more