Why did you feel there was a need for Eroticon?
I came up with the idea of Eroticon just before I was going to a conference for parent bloggers. I knew that there were other adult bloggers going and felt that while most people are open to the genre there can still be issues at an event of mixed interests and agendas.
I saw a need for an event that was dedicated to the genres of erotica and sex blogging so that writers could meet their peers and discuss their craft without fear of judgement or derailing anyone else’s learning experience.
At the UK event I noticed that there was a balance between writers, industry experts and interested laypersons (which is probably not the best choice of word given the context).
Was this balance deliberate?
The balance of content and speakers is very carefully thought about as the content of the sessions available, to some extent, dictates who will be attracted to attending the conference, so if there is a good mix of attendees it means I’ve done a good job with the schedule.
At Eroticon 2014 I wanted to have three broad categories of sessions; writing skills, blogging skills, education and diversity.
The challenge for me is always to broaden the appeal of the conference without losing its core values in terms of being an event for writers and framing sessions such as education and diversity in a way that makes them integrated into the conference.
My goal for the conference is that every delegate should walk out with a new skill, idea or connection to move their writing forward, that they leave at least one step ahead of where they were when they walked through the door.
Is this something you hope to achieve with the US edition of Eroticon?
I’m intrigued to see how Eroticon USA will pan out. I think the split is about half and half sex bloggers to writers, which is great as that suggests I’ve managed to put together an event that is attractive to my core audience, which is obviously quite important for an event organiser!
Do you feel this balancing of interests gives Eroticon a unique perspective?
Definitely! Eroticon has a unique perspective not only because of this balance or interests but because it is the only event of its kind. There are many literary festivals, writing workshops, blogging conferences and sex positive events but there are none that pull all of these aspects together.
The other great strength of Eroticon is that the delegates have really taken it to their hearts, with many talking about a sense of belonging that they get at the event, which is incredibly humbling for me but also satisfying as that is one of the things I was hoping to achieve.
What have been the highlights of Eroticon in the UK?
Nothing will replace the opening moments of Eroticon 2012 – the sense that I’d actually done it and here were all these people that had taken a leap of faith, parted with their hard earned cash and turned up.
At 2013 I loved Maureen Scott’s session about mobile publishing and Ether Books and it was fantastic to have Cindy Gallop contribute via Google Hangout for the closing plenary on the Sunday.
It is wonderful to be able to bring such women with foresight to speak at the conference and share who and what inspires me with others.
What do you anticipate being the highlights of US Eroticon?
I think the opening and closing sessions will be the highlights because those “I did it!” moments are instances of overwhelmingly personal of achievement. There will of course be dozens of moments to laugh and learn throughout the day and of course so many people to talk to and meet.
To find out more and buy tickets for Eroticon USA and Eroticon 2014 visit http://www.writesexright.com
The conference for sex bloggers and erotica writers
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