Registrations for RWA’s 2020 Virtual Conference – Love in Isolation are now open! Taking place over five days from Wednesday 12 to Sunday 16 August, the online conference includes 31 sessions and over 40 hours of content. Tickets cost $150 (plus GST) for members and $250 (plus GST) for non-members.
Covid-19 travel restrictions and border closures meant that the in-person conference, due to be held in Fremantle this year, was unlikely to go ahead so RWA made the decision to move as much of the conference online as possible.
Despite restrictions, many of the sessions due to be held at the in-person conference have been able to go ahead with a mix of live and pre-recorded workshops, streamed through the browser-based Webinar Ninja.
This includes presentations from special guests New York Times bestselling author Heather Graham, Tanera Simons (agent for Darley Anderson), Anna Boatman (publisher with PCR Fiction (Piatkus Fiction and Constable Crime)) and Liz Pelletier from Entangled who will present a full-day workshop on Wednesday 12 August with a live Q&A.
The awards ceremony will be held on Saturday 22 August at 7pm.
An online shop selling conference swag and a digital bookstore will also be included. (Look out on social media and your emails for further details.) We’re also thrilled to have the support of our sponsors including our gold sponsor Draft2Digital, and our silver sponsors Reedsy and Harlequin Australia. Their generous contributions to our conference are greatly appreciated.
For those of you worried you may not be able to catch all of the conference as it happens, have no fear! All sessions will be recorded and available to ticket holders for three months after the conference so you can watch the workshops at your leisure. You must register for the conference before the closing date to access them.
If you haven’t already organised your Love Gone Wild experience, don’t despair! Time is still on your side, and with some careful planning and these nifty ideas, you can come and kick it at Conference in Brisbane this August.
The first thing you will need to do if you’re intending to come along to Conference is buy a ticket. A core program ticket will cost $550 (members) and $580 (non-members). Included is the ticket to the ‘Bring Out the Animal in You’ Harlequin costume cocktail party on Friday night, the core conference program, and access to our exclusive pitching and manuscript assessments. Depending on your professional development needs, you may also wish to purchase add-on access to workshops, or other networking opportunities.
Depending on where you live, there are multiple options available for getting two and from Conference. Interstate attendees may wish to check budget airline websites and sign up for alerts to get the best deals on flights, or alternatively contact our travel partner at Flight Centre to get their fare. If you’re living in Queensland then buses and trains to the city might be viable options, or carpooling with friends to and from the Conference venue could help save on petrol and parking costs. RWA has also negotiated a deal with AirTrain, for discounted rail transfers for attendees coming from Brisbane Airport into the city.
Conference is taking place at the Pullman King George Square Hotel in Brisbane. The hotel is connected to the Mecure Brisbane Hotel, so as part of our partnership with them, we are able to offer close proximity to all Conference happenings. In addition, we have a great Conference accommodation rate available at the Ibis Brisbane Hotel. If you’re looking for something more modest, consider looking for accommodation with AirBnB, or using a site like Expedia to find deals in a price range and location that will suit your needs. If you’re looking for a roomie, why not post in the RWA Community Group on Facebook?
Check out the details of our accommodation offers here.
Food and drinks
Once you’ve arrived, there are ways to further cut down on costs you might incur as part of your stay. Most hotel rooms will have bar fridges and tea and coffee making facilities. You can avoid caving into those midnight cravings and ordering expensive room service by stocking up on snacks and drinks for the fridge at a convenience store, including cuppa-soup or noodles for warm and tasty treats. Bring a keep-cup and make yourself a coffee in the hotel room each morning, so you’re prepped and ready to go without needing to spend money at high-priced city cafes – paired with a store-bought breakfast bar (or those mini packets of cereal you remember from your childhood – they still exist!) and a piece of fruit, you’ve got breakfast sorted without needing to build it into your accommodation costs.
Cabs and Uber are available to get you from A to B, but will obviously incur costs. Brisbane has a pretty comprehensive public transport system, and even offers free buses within the CBD. To make things easier ahead of time, download their app so you have public transport schedules on the go.
Are you planning on attending next year’s Conference? Work out a budget early and put aside some money each week. That way you’ll be prepared for earlybird Conference registration, and even spur-of-the-moment discounted flight deals!
Do you have a few favourite conference tips? Please share and comment below.
About the Author
Louisa likes Pina Coladas and gettin’ caught in the rain. She lives in Mandurah, Western Australia, works in communications and PR by daylight, and drinks more coffee than is good for her. When she’s not writing or researching projects, Louisa enjoys spending time with her family, friends, and her Great Dane, Harriet. Hobbies include playing video games, watching copious amounts of tv, and various craft-related initiatives.
She strongly believes that the truth is still out there.