Submissions for the 2015 Berkshire Festival of Women Writers are now open!
It’s time to sharpen your pencils and think ahead to next March, when the Berkshire Festival of Women Writers will be brightening up the Berkshires again! Submissions for the 2015 Berkshire Festival of Women Writers will be accepted by the selection committee until September 15, 2015. The Proposal period for the 2015 Festival is now closed. Sign up for the mailing list for Festival updates and to be notified about the submission period for next year.
In curating the month-long Festival, our selection committee aims to create a mix of presentations by women of all ages and from many walks of life. You don’t have to be a published writer to present in our Festival–some of our best sessions in past Festivals have featured writers sharing their work in public for the very first time.
We will give priority to women writers from the Berkshire region, or writers with a connection to the Berkshires, although we may invite other presenters to join us if we feel their work would be of special interest to Berkshire audiences. We will also strive to create a variety of types of presentations, from intimate workshops and readings to panel discussions, performances and lectures aimed at a large audience.
We’ve asked on our submission form that you consider the type of event you’d like to offer, and suggest a Berkshire County venue that would be appropriate. In addition to general proposals for readings, lectures, workshops, performances, and screenings of, by and for women writers from the Berkshires and environs, we are also soliciting event proposals for a special track within the broader Festival, “Seeking Balance…Personal, Political, Planetary.”
As a community collaboration, we strive to keep most Festival events free and open to the public, and expect that presenters will offer their participation freely. However, we will consider ticketed events that are offered as full or partial benefits for the Festival, or that feature a woman writer of national stature whose work will be of special interest to Festival audiences. If you would like to host such a benefit event, please explain in the proposal. A Festival representative will contact you if there are questions.
In submitting a proposal to the Festival, you are agreeing to serve as the lead organizer for your event and to adhere to the guidelines listed below. If your proposal is accepted, a Festival representative will contact you to discuss your vision and planning strategy. If your event involves more presenters than just yourself, you will be the primary liaison with your co-presenters, and will serve as the host at your event.
The Berkshire Festival of Women Writers invests significant time and expense in publicizing the Festival as a whole, as well as individual events within the Festival. We provide the following services gratis for accepted Festival Events:Detailed event listings at berkshirewomenwriters.org, with links to presenters’ websites;
- Coordination, design and printing of Festival program and posters;
- Distribution of 5,000 copies of the color printed program and 200 posters throughout Berkshire region;
- Writing, design and distribution of regular e-newsletters to list of 2,500 voluntary subscribers, announcing Festival events (weekly during late Feb-March, monthly year-round);
- Creation and distribution of general Festival press releases to local and regional media outlets;
- Cultivation of relationships and liaison work with individual media producers, editors, publishers and writers;
- Design and placement of general Festival paid advertising in local and regional print & online media outlets;
- Coordination of radio interviews promoting Festival as a whole, and specific events in a given time frame within the Festival;
- Facebook and other social media promotion of Festival year-round, and especially Jan – March.
- Facebook Event creation for each event;
- Facebook and Twitter event promotion leading up to and during the Festival;
- Facebook Event invites;
- Sharing of presenters’ posts, images, and links on social media and via our e-blasts;
- Basic photography and/or video at events for the purposes of, and at the discretion of, the Festival;
- Sharing, tagging, posting and archiving of photographs and video;
- Liaison work with venue hosts;
- Festival representation at events.
We expect each presenter/host to take responsibility for:
- Materials and production costs for the event, including seating, a/v and sound equipment, etc. as needed;
- Event-specific press releases, advertising, and other publicity;
- Design, printing and distribution of event-specific flyers, postcards or posters
- Event-specific online and print calendar listings;
- Sharing of and invitations to your own Facebook events**;
- Specific photo or video coverage of events
- Event set-up and break-down; Festival volunteers may be available to assist within 30 minutes of the start and end of the event but additional time and/or heavy lifting or equipment set-up is the responsibility of the presenter. Equipment set-up is the responsibility of the presenter.
**Note: The Festival has found social media promotion to be especially effective. We will create a Facebook event for every Festival event, but for maximum benefit each presenter must Join, Share, Invite, and post on their Facebook Event and personal pages. Presenters who are not Facebook users can email the Festival information to be posted on their Facebook Event page.
For an additional fee, the Festival may provide these or other services, including display advertising in the printed Program, Festival website and/or e-newsletters. We can also provide a list of area freelance professionals to assist with any of the above upon request.
Thank you for your interest in the 2015 Berkshire Festival of Women Writers!