I recently attended my very first conference, the Minnesota Blogger Conference. And it. Was. Awesome.
Because suddenly, I was among my people. People, that when I handed them my business card, didn’t ask, ‘so… what is it that you do exactly?’
Some things in life are a given. I am a parent, and when I show up at school most of the other adults there are also parents. We have a common ground to start from. But when asked what I do…
I originally answered, ‘I write’. Because that didn’t get the head tilt that, ‘I write for my blog’ did. But after hearing the inspiring speakers at the MN Blogger Conference, I’m holding my head up a bit higher and saying with confidence, ‘I’m a blogger!’
I’d like to treat you to a little recap of my day:
Missy Berggren and Arik Hanson introduced our keynote speaker, Mr. Lee Oden of Top Rank Marketing. His knowledge and enthusiasm were contagious and I remember wishing I could bottle him and his energy up to carry around with me. Hmm…
Although that sounded a little less creepy in my head, I maintain my position. I was completely inspired by his opening speech.
After that we had breakout sessions and I choose Power Networking. I’m sure, without a doubt, that Paul DeBettignies was awesome. Inspiring. And incredible. But I will never know because my brain was too focused on the fact that he looked like he could be MC’s twin brother. To say I couldn’t concentrate on what he was saying would be an understatement.
My only saving grace was that he didn’t sound like MC. Otherwise, there might have been a chance of my trying to leave with him. And that would have just been embarrassing, people. ; )
The next session I chose was Building Communities Online and Off. Kate O’Reilly moderated a panel with Stephanie Meyer, Jen Emmert, Ian Schwartz and Meghan Wilker. The first thing I learned was I have a lot to learn. Since my goal for this blog is for it to become a community, I really needed to pay attention. Since my pen quit working, I wasn’t able to write it all down. And since I have the memory of a goldfish, I don’t remember much of it.
What I was able to take away from this session is that I am now part of a community of bloggers. And I have no doubt that if I needed it, someone who was in that session with me would help me out (read: let me see their notes ; ).
Lunch: TACO BAR! My love of tacos is equal to my love of Dr. Pepper so I tried very hard not to eat myself into a taco coma.
Next up was Scene and Story: Make Your Writing Sing with Kate Hopper. We did a couple of writing exercises and what I learned is that my writing doesn’t sing… It depresses. When asked to write about my childhood, it started out all good, but slowly morphed into a not-so-happy story. Same with writing about someone close to you. I won’t share who it was, but holy schnikes… It appears to me that my subconscious is not a very happy place. Thankfully, Kate Hopper was so cute and bouncy, she easily brought my mood back up. Because I really didn’t want to start crying in front of a room full of people I didn’t know (Cause, yeah…I was sitting in the front row where everyone could see me. Why do I do that to myself?!?).
The end of the day was drawing near, and I ended my fantabulous bloggy day with the lovely Erica Mayer. Her session was Vlogging: Lessons to Learn From TV. I have already tried (and failed) several times to post a Vlog, or video blog. But… apparently, when you stick a camera in my face, I go all Gumby. Not turning green, per se, but definitely having the stiff, stick-like movements going on. I looked like my own robot clone in the videos I took, and over articulated everything I said.
You know, maybe I’ll post one. Then we can laugh at me together… Because laughter brings people together, and I’m all about community, right?!? ; )
And that was my day. And it was amazing… The people I met, the friends I made, the things I learned… All of it, amazing. And If you have a chance, click on some of the names I mentioned above and take a look at their blogs. Maybe they’ll inspire you, too.