A week ago, I attended my first writer's bar camp. What fun. I wish I could have stayed all day but I was under deadline to get a magazine ready for print. I went first thing in the morning not knowing what to expect. I'd hoped for a schedule of events as I'm sorta anal that way, but when I arrived it was a free-for-all. Big signs were posted on the walls with room numbers and time slots. If you wanted to present, you wrote in your name and claimed a room for the hour. If you wanted to just attend, you waited to see who all was presenting and show up for the lecture.
As I had things to do, I chose the first slot available. I spoke to a group of about 8 - 10 who seemed very interested in what I had to say about getting published and e-publishing in general. They asked great questions and no one yawned. That's always a good sign. I stayed to hear a talk on editing and afterwards left for the day.
In hind sight, I wish I'd stayed and given my talk again. I think more folks would have attended as many didn't arrive until much later anyway.
Bar camps were devised for and by computer geeks who wanted to host a gathering where they could exchange knowledge. The first few were so successful, that they decided to apply it to writers. Writing organizations pay lots of money for guest speakers, but the idea behind a bar camp is writer's teaching writers. It's just a very large share fest of information.
Next year, I plan to stay all day and give more than one talk. Networking is fun as well.