Well, the year sure started out good. But as we’re all well aware, the world took a drastic turn, as did many of our lives. As an organization, IWOC braced itself, faced the challenges swept in by COVID-19, and has been able to stay afloat and ride this wild wave. We plan to do so until we can safely be brought to shore and carry on as normally as we ever have.
Whether it was before, during and will be after the pandemic cloud passes, IWOC’s course has remained steady, mapping the ways for members to get more work, including offering programs and information to help them improve upon or learn new skills designed to increase their own marketability to potential clients. Without skipping a beat, we took our programs from the Gratz Center to Zoom, adapting to these unprecedented times with unprecedented programs to help buoy up members not only professionally, but personally. From the onset of the virus we also provided easy access to numerous links to resources so that our members can stay afloat financially. (These links remain posted on our General Resources page.)
To recap the year’s happenings:
The show must go on – even while sheltering in place!
Program Chair Jeff Steele and his stalwart Committee of Vladimire Herard and Betsy Storm have continued to bring in programs that both informed and entertained. Members who missed any can download the podcasts on our Member Resource page and relive such info- and advice-packed gems as: What They Wish They Knew Then, Life in the Freelance Lane, Tech Tools for Writers, Blogging for Bigger Bucks, Growing Your Business Through Podcasting, Building and Preserving Your Brand in COVID-19 Times, Business Survival Kit, The Bushido Code: 7 Simple Secrets to a Happier, Healthier Life, and Stay Current on Ever-Changing LinkedIn.
And now that we have a Zoom account, the program possibilities will be virtually endless.
Uniting with our long-lost sister, Independent Writers of Southern California
When IWOSC President Gary Young proposed an affiliation between IWOC and IWOSC, there was no hesitation. We said, “I do.” Since June, we’ve been opening up our programs to each other’s memberships, and it has enriched the offerings of both organizations. Thus far, we were able to sit in on – for free – four of IWOSC’s Zoom webinars: How to Write Query Letters & Proposals, The Art of the Personal Essay, Learn to Zoom and an Online Conversation with Distinguished Author T.C. Boyle.
There’s more to plan but all I can say is, the honeymoon is not over! We’ve only just begun.
Events of Interest. We’re not the only ones who put on outstanding programs. We also informed IWOC members about these world class events:
Promoting our members. Proud of their breaking news and accomplishments, horns were tooted for:
Promoting our authors
Last Spring, we got wind of #IndieApril, a new Twitter trend that promoted independently published authors. What a great way to promote IWOC member authors! And so we did, spreading word amongst our 1000+ contacts via e-blasts and our social media platforms for: Cindy Bertram, Adela Crandell Durkee, Tephra Miriam, Kathryn Occhipinti, Karen Sandrick, Jennifer Worrell, and Joseph Wycoff.
Perks in the works:
Oh, what a year it was. Challenging for sure. But, also, pleasantly surprising in what we were able to accomplish, including establishing affiliations and technological skills that ended up expanding IWOC in unforeseen positive ways. We actually were able to safely navigate a sea of adversity. With a watchful eye on the horizon, we fully expect to be heading towards calmer waters and sunnier days.
- Laura Stigler
Copyright 2011–2019, Independent Writers of Chicago
332 S. Michigan Avenue, #121–W686
Chicago, IL 60604-4434