Subtitled: A Committee, a Plan, a Canal, Paeettimmoca!
Planning by committee can make it so hard to get what you hoped for in the end. On the other hand, doing it all yourself is a recipe for utter disaster. There’s just too much work, and too many skills needed to run a conference like Skepticon. And we have a bunch of incredible people with amazing skills. But everyone doing the work needs to know what everybody else is doing to make the pieces fit. So, we have meetings. Yay!
We have big boisterous meetings in February with lots of ideas. We have small, intimate meetings with bleary-eyed survivors in August. We have OMFSM-it’s-two-weeks-before-the-conference-and-we-have-to-finish-The-Things-™! meetings in late-early Octvember. We have meetings during the conference, and we get together for breakfast on the Monday after Skepticon to write down what went right, what went wrong, and how we can fix the latter, without screwing up the former, next year.
That first meeting of the year, though, is one to look forward to. Everyone is excited. Heck, everyone is there, and that’s enough of a miracle. Every idea is the bestest one we’ve ever heard of! Everything has that new Skepticon smell! Exclamation points are rampant! And this is the year that everything is going to go perfectly!
So what gets discussed at the first meeting? The division reports are pretty brief, since not much has happened other than signing the venue contract, so we quickly launch into the open discussion part of the meeting. We try to make the big structural decisions for the year. How many speakers do we want, versus how many panels or workshops? What topics do we think are going to be interesting nine months from now? How can we improve our community activities? Who has theme ideas? And everyone gets homework for next meeting.
I can’t tell you how we answered these questions, because spoilers. But we have a plan, and it’s the bestest evar, and you will be very excited! Save the dates November 10th – 12th for us.