So, Convention Career Connection is done and out. It's interesting to look back on it and reflect on things.
So far the reaction to the book from people I've talked to has mostly been “hey, what a great idea!” I'm glad to see they're such a good reaction so far, and it drives home why I did this.
I believe in the power of conventions. They bring us together, they let us experience amazing things. Conventions enrich us in many ways – and in fun ways.
I believe in the power of fandom and our geekiness to help shape our careers. I believe that our loves and passions should drive our visions of careers and our place in the world.
So, I wanted to try to formalize a set of mental tools and guidelines to help people make career events at conventions.
A convention is a marvelous place to run career events. You have a good idea of what the passions and interest of the attendees are. You have excellent potential teachers in attendance. People in a good mood, and thus receptive to a good learning experience.
In fact, the sheer diversity at conventions, the many potential ways to reach and teach people, are kind of overwhelming. I've seen absolutely amazing career events, and I've seen the same old same old. So I wanted to make sure there was a guide to inspire people to create new and more effective career events – or to realize when the usual was actually appropriate.
I also realize that when it comes to creating workshops, panels, and so forth on careers, it's kind of hard to know where to start. Maybe that's the reason for many redundant panels and repetitious events–people stick with what they know. So I wanted to create a kind of system that would help people know where to start.
I realized some convention events to help people with careers really don't “go farther” like many professional training events. There's no follow-up, no handouts, no support community. I want do encourage people running conventions to include some of the same things that professional training events did. Sure convention is all the way!
Finally, let's face it; the economy sucks right now, the Great Recession grinds on, and many people are seeing their dreams crushed or deferred. This is my way to encourage fans, gamers, otaku, and geeks to turn their conventions into career engines and return people do their dreams.
So that's it in a nutshell. Why I wrote the book.
So I hope it inspires you - be it to buy the book or to write your own, to run a con or to run an event. There are damn good reasons to.
See you in the con scene . . .