(This post first appeared on the Romance Writer’s Organisation of South Africa blog)
2020 has been the year of the parties that weren’t. Weddings canceled. Theatre shows. Dream trips. Family reunions.
But there’s one show that is going on, and it will, as usual, bring all the feels: the love, the excitement, the joy, the camaraderie, all the good stuff you know you need right now.
Of course the party I’m talking about is The Romance Writers Organisation of South Africa’s annual conference. And you don’t even have to but a plane ticket or book a hotel room.
Because #ROSACon2020 is a virtual event, and it’s open to all levels of writers.
Wait, wait. Don’t log off. We know you’ve done a huge amount of virtual things in 2020. We know you might have digital fatigue. So, we have prepared a programme for #ROSACon2020 that has such an intriguing array of speakers, topics and events, it will only leave you inspired and empowered. The conference will flow from local speaker to international, from workshop to presentation, from pitch to writing sprint with space in between to relax, or fetch a coffee or network, depending on your mood.
Are you a beginner writer? Have you started your first manuscript ever? Or are you a fledgling? Do you have a manuscript that is ready to fly the nest? Are you already down the road, manuscripts out and about, but the road has a few potholes? Are you a seasoned writer, with contracts and bestsellers?
Each conference day includes a writing sprint or a writing exercise to keep out reason for being in focus. But, this time, you won’t be alone at your desk. Find the full program HERE
Kickstarting the conference on a high note is international guest speaker, Julia Quinn, the bestselling author of the Bridgerton historical romance novels, which is coming soon as a Netflix series. We are so excited to hear what Julia has to say in the Keynote Address on Day One.
Are you writing YA? Or a high concept novel? Then make sure it’s not your turn to cook dinner on 20 October 2020 because those two genres are on the programme between 17h30 and 19h30 at #ROSACon2020.
Interested in pitching your manuscript? There are six opportunities over the course of #ROSACon2020 to pitch to editors and publishers. (You need to pre-book for these.)
What about marketing? Is that your nemesis? Then Day Two is for you. In one of the presentations, Skye Warren, bestselling author and marketing maven, will share cost effective marketing strategies that work.
Stephen King said, ‘To write is human but to edit is divine.’ Editor Joanne Grant will tell you more about editing, what editors expect from authors and what authors can expect from their editors.
How about writing romance in South Africa? Do you set your books here? Do you write Afrikaans? If you said yes to either of those, then please join us early on Day Three to hear a number of guest speakers, including Izak de Vries, who will share data about current local book sales and marketing trends.
Indie Authors, Day Four is for you, from Cover Design to Self Publishing tips. Don’t miss it.
On Saturday, we have the wonderful experienced local writer, Elsa Winckler, sharing her wisdom at the start of the day. Later on we have a talk by New York Times Best Selling author, Shirley Jump, on scenes and sequels, and then the inimitable fountain of knowledge, Jane Friedman, will talk about the thing that plagues most writers: self doubt.
On Saturday evening all the writers who entered the 2020 Imbali and Strelitzia Contest will be on the edge of their seats at the Awards Ceremony, when the winners will be announced. Have your bubbly ready to celebrate all our published and unpublished authors at the event.
Sunday will include a session about writing the male point of view, and #ROSACon2020 will close with an inspiring talk by bestselling author and Entangled Managing Editor, Candace Havens. She will help us to keep on dreaming big.
Please join us. Even if you don’t write romance. Yes. You. The person in the back writing Cozy Mysteries. Or Fantasy. Or Crime. Whatever you write. There is so much to learn about the craft of writing at #ROSACon2020.
But you know what the best part is? Love is not just a genre. You will find it in this tribe. A tribe who will support you, cheer for you, push you, advise you and most of all, be kind to you, throughout your journey as a writer.
Wouldn’t you agree, in the year 2020, that this is what all of us need?