You Didn’t Go to FaffCamp (or Voice-World): 5 Ways to Fight Post-Faff Blues

bluesHow cool is it that the burgeoning community of voice actors, coaches, and audio producers… event producers and organizers can mount TWO huge VO conferences in one weekend successfully!

Even though it’s a myopic view, the social media streams Derek Chappell and I curated over the weekend (FaffCamp, VoiceWorld) reflect enthusiastic support, breakthrough “aha” moments, and deepening relationships in an intense experience that transcends definition.

In the weeks ahead, you’ll see gushing remembrances, and inspirational posts reflecting aftermath awakenings.  I’m certainly responsible for a few of my own over the years, and so it is I arrive at the weird emotion that follows NOT being able to attend such a seminal gathering.

During and after the event, the non-attendees goes through something akin to  Kübler-Ross’ 5-Stages-of-Grief .  Denial, Anger, Bargaining, Depression, Acceptance.

Add to that a deep sense of alone-ness, or apart-ness that — though familiar to the freelance actor — becomes more acute in its deficit of relationship (especially if you’ve attended before, and KNOW what goes on there!)

I’ve learned to cope.  If you recognize this sort of empty feeling in your gut after missing a good conference, there IS hope.

FIVE WAYS TO FIGHT THE POST-FAFF BLUES

1)  Take heart that conferences like FaffCamp/FaffCon raise the level of professionalism and competence for the entire industry.  That may seen like an esoteric concept with nothing tangible to hang your hat on.  Maybe it is. But it’s also true that education, awareness, and sharing of industry-wide trends from even 100 voice-actors sends out waves that ripple back and forth across the country affecting thousands of peers, clients, and studios.

2) Take the time to phone or Skype your favorite VO friend who attended, and debrief them.  They’re gonna want to tell you how great it was and what they learned.  This is why you’re calling!….so make time to let them talk.  Don’t expect to learn everything.  You might ask them to email you afterwards with the three top things they learned.

3)  Watch the Social Media Networks for pics and commentsFaffCon Friends is a great group to belong to for this stuff.  People will want to talk about the factoids they picked-up, and it’s all gold.  Watch for Peter O’Connell’s VoxMarketising, or Doug Turkel’s blog, or Marc Scott’s blog for their observations.

4)  Plan now to go to the next conference of your choiceFaffCon6 is in San Antonio, TX in the first week of October, and this is a fine place to start.

5)  Get to work.  It’ll get your mind off the temporary blues, and you’ll find renewed energy for it (see #1) because you are a talented freelancer in an incredible industry, and because voice over people are the most supportive and encouraging peers anyone could ask for.  So, ask!

What did I miss?  See you in San Antonio!

CourVO

The FaffCamp Social Media Stream

faffcampJust because I can’t be in Charlotte, NC this weekend for the first-ever FaffCamp, does NOT mean I’m out of the loop. (sniff)

I’ll be living vicariously through the attendees tweets and FaceBook posts.

In fact, my bestie Derek Chappell and I will be riding herd on all the social media posts we can find online for the next three days…and we’ve got it down!  We’re searching keywords, names, hashtags, networks, and pictures for any and everything FAFFCAMP.

Here’s how it works:

If you’re attending FaffCamp, please use the hashtags #faffcamp or #vo in all your Tweets.  Beyond that, we’re doing the work to find the stuff you post.  So just have fun, share as much as you can, and leave the sleuthwork to us.

If you’re like Derek and me — left watching from afar — please bookmark this URL:  http://storify.com/courvo/official-faffcamp-2013-social-media-stream.

That link will take you to a STORIFY page we’re building every hour with the tweets, FaceBook Posts, and just about every other Social Media stream.  We’re watching all the stuff going on at FaffCamp, and I’m pretty sure, at least Derek knows what he’s doing! ;)

We can’t wait to see what wonderful things will happen at the first FaffCamp!

CourVO

WoVO/FaffCamp Coupon

coupon-2In just a little over a month, FaffCon‘s latest offshot:  FaffCamp will take place in Charlotte, NC.  (see details here).  More like a typical conference (rather than FaffCon’s “un-conference format), FaffCamp will nonetheless have a very faffy feel, and you’ll see a lot of your friends there.

Among the vendors being represented at the Table Top Expo at FaffCamp is voice-acting’s newest Industry Trade Organization:  World-Voices.org (WoVO for short).  Please try to stop by and chat if you’re gonna be there.

The organizers of FaffCon/Faffcamp are embracing the goals of WoVO, and are offering a pretty good deal that is a win-win-win.

  • WoVO gets greater exposure
  • FaffCamp gets more attendees
  • Attendees get a total of $50 break on costs at FaffCamp and WoVO.

Below is the coupon offer. It’s getting down to the wire for FaffCamp planners, which is why the deadline is short.  But, honestly, there’s still plenty of time to make your plans, and get in your registration…and now there’s even more incentive.

coupon

Can’t make it to FaffCamp, but still want to support World-Voices?  Peachy!  Just go to http://worldvo.org to sign-up online.  We’ve recently revamped our application procedure, combining the $25 one-time-only application fee, with the $49 annual membership fee for a total of $74 dollars initially… then $49 each year thereafter.

WoVO organizers have been meeting feverishly lately, and hammering out a lot of details that will make this an organization you’ll want to be part of, support, and help build.  Every profession that comes of age eventually launches an offshoot business trade group that helps represent the concerns of its members.  Go to http://worldvo.org for more explainers, and become part of our new free online social media site:  http://worldvo.com.  “”Our mission is to strengthen, improve and promote the artistic, professional and economic success of freelance professional voice actors world wide.”

CourVO

Get Campy

FaffcampIn the interest of absolute fairness, It behooves me to underscore the opportunities available at the OTHER major Voice Over Conference taking place during the first weekend of May  (I’ve already blogged about Voice World Toronto, organized by the fine folks at Voices.com).

What’s cool is that the universe of possible voice over people who would benefit from EITHER event is big enough that they will both be a success.

So, today, let’s talk about FAFFCAMP!!

As we all know, FaffCon is the bestest, most uniquest of all voice over UNconferences.  With five blockbuster events under their belt, the staff at FaffCon (led by the indefatigable Amy Snively), thought it might be a worthy idea to (1) open up the field of potential attendees, and (2) give FaffCamp a more organized structure, like you might find at most traditional conferences.

[FaffCon is limited to 100 attendees who are proven voice over pros, and the event has a delightful free-form attendee-centric design to it.]

Scheduled main stage speakers at FaffCamp are Bob Souer, Dan Friedman, Doug Turkel, and Rowell Gormon; all are FaffCon alumni stalwarts, and experts in their speaking role.  Of course, there are many other elements to the event, including the Table Top Expo, and breakout sessions.  Charlotte is a great place to visit, and FaffCamp is modestly priced.

FaffCamp returns to the scene of FaffCon5 at the Omni in Charlotte, NC, and is more of a weekend experience…so come early and stay late!  It’s probably best to head on over to the FaffCamp website, and get your registration done ASAP, as an early head-count helps in the organization of the event.

As luck would have it, I was able to spend some time on a Skype call yesterday with FaffCon founder Amy Snively, and her right-hand: Lauren McCullough.  The interview is below, and includes some info you have not yet heard concerning this May event, so take a listen!  Thanks Amy and Lauren!

FaffCamp Interview from Dave Courvoisier on Vimeo.

CourVO

Camp Faff for 2013

CampFaffWhen something’s that good, word gets around.  Faffcon is that good.

Having attended 3 of the 5 FaffCon Unconferences, and having sponsored all of them, I think I know of what I speak.

FaffCon was not only a novel idea for a conference, but a game-changer for voice acting in general.  Kudos to Amy Snively for conceiving and masterfully enabling FaffCon. People get it.  They want to be there.

But its very design keeps FaffCon from being an all-out affair.  100 attendees allowed, and you must show your mettle as a voice actor to be there.

Voice actors aren’t elitists, though, and neither is Amy.  She’s been looking for a way to be egalitarian and enabling of more Faffers, and the results of all that cogitation are now being announced.

The first Faff Camp will be held in Charlotte…the same site of the last FaffCon.  The hotel liked us, and vice-versa.  It’s coming up in May of 2013, and the barriers to entry are….none.  Well, you will have to find your way there, and there is an registration fee… but that’s about it.

This is good news for all of us in voice acting.  As FaffCon’s Peter O’Connell writes:  “…Faff Camp is a peer-to-peer professional development conference for working voiceover pros (not just voice talents, voice actors, and narrators, but ALL PROS who do work related to voice overs). It’s participant driven and highly interactive, just like its sister event FaffCon. But unlike FaffCon, most of the Faff Camp agenda is set in advance, which makes it possible for Faff Camp to welcome a larger group…”

O’Connell’s got the early word on Faff Camp, and I suggest you click on the link below to his site, and read more of what this event holds for you.  Although I plan to be in San Antonio in October of 2013, I must admit, Charlotte in May is likely a travel weekend for me!

Peter O’Connell’s VoxMarketising Blog on Faff Camp.

CourVO

voxmarketising – the audio’connell Voice Over Talent blog and podcast