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Letitia Henville

Why Academic Editors Should Attend Congress 2024

At an exhibition booth with wall displays and a three-tiered stand holding sheets of paper, two people sit at a table, another person looks at a wall display and two other people stand together.

Imagine if you could meet with hundreds — even thousands — of potential editing clients in just one week. Now imagine those potential clients approaching you, asking you questions and being curious about the value that you and your colleagues might bring. 

Are you excited by the idea of being able to demystify our profession for people who need our support? Or does the idea of talking to strangers make you want to curl into a tiny ball? 

What if you could attend such an event and feel confident that you’d be representing yourself and your profession competently — even joyously? 

What is Congress? 

This year, Editors Canada is sponsoring a booth in the Expo at the Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences (usually just called “Congress”), which is meeting at McGill University in Montreal, Quebec. Congress is the largest academic gathering in Canada, bringing together researchers from 82 scholarly associations in disciplines from medieval studies to the digital humanities. Each of these scholarly associations holds their annual conference during Congress, and registrants can also attend various open events. 

Congress is a vibrant, exciting meeting of the minds. New ideas circulate and opportunities for collaboration bubble up, mixing in the air with the scent of coffee and the sound of animated chatter. Senior researchers discuss hyper-niche subjects with graduate students from four provinces away. Journalists mingle with scholars, searching out compelling stories. 

And this year, it all takes place in Montreal in June — surely the best time of the year to visit the city. 

To my knowledge, this 2024 meeting will be the first time that Editors Canada has sponsored a booth at the Congress Expo. The Expo is held in a grand meeting room in which university presses and other academic publishers display their new books for sale and chat with researchers keen to get their work published. Everyone is talking about books: the books just published and the books they want to write. What a room to walk into as an editor!

Represent Editors Canada at Congress

How can you feel confident, even joyous, representing Editors Canada at Congress 2024? 

Editors Canada’s Academic Editing special interest group (SIG), led by Emily Lam, is working hard to set up our Expo booth representatives for success at Congress. 

In advance of the event, we’ll create social media materials and content marketing copy to promote your attendance at the Expo, so that scholarly writers can know when you’re available to chat with them and answer their questions. We’ll also host one or more pre-event webinars to talk about the kinds of questions that booth visitors may bring and answer any questions that you may have. 

During the event, we’re hoping to have at least two editors at the booth at all times — including one editor who is fluent in French. With a partner at the booth, you’ll have an edibuddy to turn to if someone approaches you with a question you can’t answer. We’re working on developing marketing collateral that can be handed out, to encourage shy folks to approach the booth. And of course we’ll have QR codes that link to the Online Directory of Editors for booth visitors to start researching editors.

After the event, we’ll publish an Editors’ Weekly blog post sharing booth attendees’ experiences, so that future Congress attendees can learn from this first go-around. 

Ready to attend?

It’s rare that we’re able to show up so visibly in the same room as our clients, offering our services and our support and raising the profile of the profession. Meeting with strangers can be intimidating, but your Editors Canada Academic Editing SIG team is working hard to ensure that volunteers — and the folks who visit our booth — have a positive experience at Congress. 

If you’re interested in signing up to sit at the booth, please fill out our Google Form by Monday, March 25 at 11:59 p.m. ET. Volunteers who are selected to represent Editors Canada at Congress will be notified before March 31, 2024. Priority will go to volunteers who are able to sit at the booth for multiple shifts.

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Previous post from Letitia Henville: Collaborating on a Webinar: Two Editors’ Perspectives (with Katherine Morton)

The Editors’ Weekly is the official blog of Editors Canada. Contact us.


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About the author

Letitia Henville

Letitia Henville is a freelance academic editor and the advice columnist behind "Ask Dr. Editor," published monthly at University Affairs.

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One Comment “Why Academic Editors Should Attend Congress 2024”

  • A wee update from the Academic Editing SIG: in the end, we ended up not attending Congress 2024. The law faculty went on strike and the students were still protesting to support of Palestine, and it didn’t feel great to propose crossing a picket line and ignoring protesters — so we backed out of the conference. We hope to try again for Congress 2025.

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