WLA in 2015 Conference

We are happy to see conference paper and panel proposals beginning to stream in for the Western Literature Association’s 50th annual meeting, 14-17 October 2015 in Reno, Nevada.

The proposal deadline is 15 June 2015 (click for link to CFP).

In response to several queries, your co-presidents want to explain the “ConfTool” management system and our reason for once again adopting this software package that some members have viewed as an unnecessarily cumbersome change to the old system of emailing abstracts. (It may be worth remembering that, 20 years ago, requiring email submissions was also viewed as an imposition!)

We, along with several past presidents and their teams, believe ConfTool to be a worthwhile bargain. It trades off a few extra minutes of each member’s time to create an account and fill in a few fields in exchange for saving conference organizers untold and unwelcome hours reformatting and even retyping submissions that are sometimes incomplete or inconsistent, and consolidating them into a draft program with many subsequent revisions. It automates the persistent problem of reconciling conference registration and WLA membership status with proposals. In sum, it distributes these minor administrative tasks among the membership, to free the organizers for the more substantial jobs associated with conference preparation.

  • For preformed panels, the system requires each panelist to submit an individual proposal, keyed to the panel title. So, for example, if an organizer creates a panel, say, “Animals and Asterisks: Decentering Biohegemonic Transubstantialities” each of the panelists have to submit (after creating an account) their own individual contribution (by clicking “Preformed Panel”) with the title of the panel and then the title of their individual contribution preceded by the panel title, for example, “Animals and Asterisks: Decentering Biohegemonic Transubstantialities” / “Where is the Senator for the Salmon? Gary Snyder’s Pescopolitics”
  • If the panelist does not have a separate title for an individual contribution, she or he can just enter “Animals and Asterisks: Decentering Biohegemonic Transubstantialities” / Panelist [or, if appropriate, “Moderator” or “Organizer”]
  • While this feature of ConfTool has perhaps generated the most critical attention, it ensures that all panelists are on board with the proposal and that we can quickly and efficiently communicate with them regarding schedule changes, A-V needs, and the like.
  • So, we encourage you to log into ConfTool at https://www.conftool.pro/wla-conference-2015/ and submit your proposals. It’s going to be a great time in Reno, the “Biggest Little City” of the Intermountain West!

    Questions? Contact us at WLAConference2015@westernlit.org

    Susan Bernardin and David Fenimore

So, we encourage you to log into ConfTool at https://www.conftool.pro/wla-conference-2015/ and submit your proposals. It’s going to be a great time in Reno, the “Biggest Little City” of the Intermountain West!