Hey, I bet you’ve heard by now that the PASS Call for speakers is now open.

No matter what your skill level as a public speaker, I would encourage you to submit an abstract.  Even if you think you’re not good enough or don’t have enough speaking experience, go ahead and submit an abstract.  It may be your lucky day and your abstract will be selected, at worst it will be practice in the art of composing a good abstract.

Why will this be good experience?  After looking through thousands of abstract submissions for years I’ve decided that composing a good abstract is an art.  It requires equal parts black magic and pixie dust to make a good abstract, and even when you have that it takes a bit of luck to get it accepted at a national conference.

In order to help potential speakers understand why their abstracts weren’t selected, last year I asked the review teams to tag each unaccepted abstract with a reason that it couldn’t be accepted.  As you might expect this created quite a bit of extra work for the teams but, for new speakers there should be good value in knowing whether the reason for no selection was the competition, a poor abstract, lack of interest in the topic, or some other reason noted.  The system isn’t perfect by any means because we don’t have the means to provide a detailed reason for no selection but, hopefully its useful.

One final reason I think everyone reading this should submit an abstract—> if during the submission process you select the “speaker bureau” checkbox, your info will be used by other PASS events needing speakers so you will have more potential exposure that will help you get the experience needed to speak at the Summit.

Important pages I would use if I were submitting an abstract to ANY SQL related event

I love examples, and learning from examples is what works for me so the currently submitted abstract list is a wonderful resource for learning how to write an abstract, not to mention scoping out the competition http://sqlpass.eventpoint.com/submittedsessions

The definition page – Obviously you cant submit a session if you don’t know the rules http://sqlpass.eventpoint.com/Definitions

Pre/Post Conference prerequisites – Already an expert? ready to present a full day and get the recognition you deserve? this one is for you http://www.sqlpass.org/Community/SpeakerResource/PrePostConferencePrerequisites.aspx

Understanding the selection process – Want to know how your abstract will be evaluated?  This is the place! http://www.sqlpass.org/Community/SpeakerResource/AbstractSelectionProcess.aspx

The speaker resource page – lots of good info here, don’t be afraid to dig around http://www.sqlpass.org/Community/SpeakerResource.aspx