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Posts Tagged ‘BlogHer 12’

What to write, what to write?

Last weekend I was at an enormous blogging conference, BlogHer 12, in New York City.  There were 5,000 women bloggers there (and a few men too).  Some of those women are now following my blog.  Readership is up.  My audience is (slightly) larger.  Cue stage-fright.

Which is ridiculous.  I started this blog to get back into writing when the twins were around one and the first crushing wave of twinfant care had subsided.  I’m not trying to become the next Dooce or Blogess.  I’m not trying to build a branding empire or win the mommy wars or even promote a particular philosophy of motherhood or writing or whatever this blog is centered around.  But having been to conference sessions on pitching and marketing and brand-partnering, having had conversations about increasing readership and finding sponsors and offering give-aways …  Ack.  I’m falling victim to the one thing I’ve tried to avoid during this whole blog-starting process: morbidly over-thinking what I write here.

I’m a writer.  An essayist.  With the twins on the scene (more…)

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Wow.

It’s going to take me days — if not weeks — to process all that happened at the conference known as BlogHer12.  Basically, it’s a conference for women bloggers.  Men come too, but they’re rather few and far between.  So there’s a lot of women.  This time nearly 5,000 of them.

I’m an introvert by nature but having spent nearly a decade as a university-level writing teacher I’ve learned to be more outgoing.  And I’m glad.  Sometimes I had to push myself to meet people but I was never rebuffed.  Some meetings had more spark and chemistry than others, but I never felt snubbed.

Here is a mix of advice that I gleaned from pre-conference posts (advice that worked!) and actual conference experience:

Before:

  • Do bring cards.  Nearly every meal felt like a poker game as we all dealt our cards around the table.  Nearly every meeting ended in one of us asking, “Do you have a card?”  Give cards to people even if you’re not sure they want one.  Take cards from people even if you’re not sure you want them!  I came home with a stack about two inches high.  Your cards should have your name, your e-mail address, your blog address and your Twitter handle.  A picture of yourself is also helpful so that people can remember you when they’re home and going through their own two-inch stack.

My mini cards from moo.com — front and back.

  • Don’t worry (too much) about what to wear.  Be comfortable in your clothes — both physically and psychologically.  You will see everything from (more…)

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So here’s something new: I’m writing this post (and uploading it) on a train.  To New York.  To attend the BlogHer conference.

OK — that’s three new things.

If this is the first time you’ve read this blog, you might want to click back a post or two to see what it’s usually like.  I suspect that for the next few days I’m going to be writing about this conference, which has the potentially to be really awesome … and really bizarre.

Until now I’ve only been to academic conferences — for writers, for teachers of writing.  There is no swag at academic conferences (aside from a canvas tote, a legal pad, a ballpoint pen and maybe some stickers from a publishing house).  If you got caught wearing a hot pink boa and a sparkly tiara you better have tenure; you may very well be fired anyway.  But supposedly there are such things at BlogHer.  It’s a conference for women bloggers.  Four thousand of them will be there.  I will be one of them.

What to expect?  Will it be (more…)

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