Conferences are the perfect opportunity to meet with your fellow authors, network with publishers, meet readers, and learn new skills. Most of the conferences below focus on education and networking with your peers, instead of focusing on reader interaction. However, we do always recommend looking up your local book festivals and setting up a table so you can meet with readers too! Without further ado, here is our list of must-attend conferences in 2020.
The Desert Nights, Rising Stars Writers Conference
When: February 21-20, 2020
Where: Tempe, AZ
How Much: $150-$300
Who: Arizona State University’s Piper Center not only offers regular writing workshops, but once a year it also hosts their “crown jewel” conference appealing to seasoned authors and new writers alike. Come for the chance to hone your craft, stay for the community.
IBPA Publishing University
When: April 3-4, 2020
Where: Redondo Beach, CA
How Much: $195-$495
Who: IBPA’s Publishing University is one of the top author conferences catered specifically to small presses and independent authors. With over 30+ education sessions, beginners and more advanced independent publishers are guaranteed to gain useful knowledge.
The Self-Publishing Conference
When: April 25, 2020
Where: Leicester, England
How Much: $90
Who: The Self-Publishing Conference is the only conference in the UK dedicated to self-published authors. They offer sessions on a variety of topics, including writing, production, marketing, and distribution.
When: May 27-29, 2020
Where: New York, NY
How Much: TBA
Who: If you’re involved in any aspect of the publishing industry, you need to attend BEA – one of the industry’s leading events. By meeting everyone from librarians to national retailers, you ‘ll learn about new titles in publishing as well as trends, technology, and much more.
When: July 7-11, 2020
Where: New York, NY
How Much: $75 – $1,260
Who: A hub for all mystery and thriller authors, Thrillerfest includes sessions on marketing, publishing, and honing your craft. They even have a Master Craftfest – specialized small sessions in which successful, published authors work with you on your manuscript.
When: September 17-19, 2020
Where: St Louis, MO
How Much: $10 – $325
Who: At Penned Con authors and readers come together for the chance to mingle, have fun, and raise money for Autism. What better way is there to spend a weekend than attending a book party that benefits charity?
Indie Romance Convention
When: October 7-10, 2020
Where: Lebanon, TN
How Much: $55-$150
Who: If you are an indie, hybrid, or small press romance author, then this conference is perfect for you. Attendance is limited to 100 attendees, so if you want to get in on their writing and marketing workshops, register sooner rather than later!
Sanibel Island Writers Conference
When: November 7-10, 2020
Where: Sanibel Island, FL
How Much: TBD
Who: Been looking for a reason to get away to the beach? Now’s your chance! Escape to beautiful Sanibel Island for a writer’s retreat where you’ll workshop, listen to keynote speakers, and pick up the latest trends and tidbits from top publishing experts. Registration opens summer 2020, but it’s never too soon to plan ahead.
Looking for more fun conferences to attend? Check out these much longer lists at New Pages and Author E.M.S.
8 comments on “9 Conferences for Indie Authors to Attend in 2020”
Penned Con is in St. Louis, MO. I went last year and was impressed. Great event! I will be there as an author again this year and am really looking forward to it!
There is also the Chanticleer Authors Conference. I went last year and learned much. Going back again at the end of April.
Do Bargain Booksy promotions appear on UK sites? Can byers be directed to Amazon.co.uk?
Hey Alan, at this time, we only promote on the US Amazon store, so we cannot direct readers to the UK store.
I am an individual author. I publish my books on amazon kindle. Can I be a part of this? And if yes then how would it be beneficial for me?
Hi Durga, you are certainly welcome to participate in indie author conferences! We recommend attending one that is related to your specific genre of writing. For example, if you’re a Romance author then the Indie Romance Convention might be helpful for you attend. We’ve found conferences like this to be beneficial for indie authors because it enables them to find community and also get feedback on their writing!
I’d be glad to join the conference IBPA Publishing University or something of a sort, for independent authors. I’m not a beginner, but can’t call myself an advanced publisher, so such a conference would be very useful for me.
Conferences can be hosted according to specific subjects, writing niches, or genres, or they can be targeted towards the broad writing and publishing industry. Attendees are able to network with peers, industry experts, and professionals that provide author services, such as publishing agents, book editors, and illustrators.