So I am still scribbling away: content ideas, book recommendations, lists of people to follow & blogs to read and so on. A thousand tabs open, photoshop & iPhoto in the background because I am still finding gem’s of information & memories from my too short time at Blogtacular.
It was my first time attending the networking conference for bloggers, whose attendees & speakers come from all over the world to meet and get inspired. Founded by the amazing Kat Molesworth who with the help of her team put on a day of talks & workshops to inspire creativity and promote community. And what a community! It was the biggest thing I took away from the event, the sense of belonging.
Whatever you needed to achieve from attending the event you could: make connections, learn new skills & get technical advice, get inspiration for content or design it was all down to you what you did with your day. With about 300 attendees there is was no shortage of conversation, and a schedule that offered ample options when it came to workshops and downtime activities. I was going to paint a mental picture for you, but seemed quicker to draw your a slightly wonky one.
I don’t know how the venue compared to previous years but the etc venue at Aldersgate had plenty of space and 3 separate rooms for talks and workshops. Which to choose turned out to be the hardest choices of the day, starting after the amazingly deliver keynote opener by Lisa Congdon. She had some really hard hitting words on the emotional & physical struggle of being a content maker, offering up the big question of ‘What makes a good life?’.
My choices started with: Blog Business with Kristabel Plummer from I want you to Know. Learning how to value yourself and apply some basic professional principles to your approach to new relationships, whether that be with brands or even fellow bloggers. Loads of notes were taken and tips to make your day easier, just want I needed to ease me in to the day.
Much of lunch was spent moving around the room checking out the Market Place stalls then building up the nerve to pitch your ideas to the Mollie Makes team. Their selfie station and flat lay challenge was always manned by an eager crowd throughout the day, a sponsor who earned their logo on the programme thats for sure.
More notes were taken in my afternoon sessions the first with Carin Lee from Pinterest, reminding me to sort out my business account. The real surprise was my decision to go to the writing workshop with Laura Jane, I usually jump at a photography challenge as its where I started and what I am always drawn back to but I though hey try something you aren’t sure about. Bloody hell she was funny, putting the room through a reading of her own work and a writing challenge that had everyone silently scribbling. Bravery was shown by those reading their work aloud, while I contemplated mine deeply and ended up being secretly happy with. The closing keynote was another charismatic american, Enid Hwang one of the first 7 workers for Pinterest, sharing the history of the internet and where she started
With a last tearful farewell from Kat and a bucket worth of thank you’s the day was over, I was so tired but I didn’t want it to end. I almost suggested a sleepover so I didn’t have to leave! A final group photos and the much awaited goody bag. This year it was designed by hello DODO & Designosauryeah covered in a red & blue seaside ice lolly combo.
Well I hope that gives you an idea of what went on, and if like me you were deciding whether to go I hope it convinced you its worth the ticket. So put it in your diary for next year, Blogtacular is continuing to grow each year: bigger event & a bigger team. For all the people I have met, you are who made the day for me and don’t be a stranger! The meet up’s set for Septmeber yeah?
A quick bit to end, the event couldn’t run without its sponsors so a big thanks to them: Sudo, West Elm, Microsoft, Mollie Makes, Annie Sloan & Pinterest.With a special shout out to Mollie’s for supplementing my photos with a few splendid snaps from their photographer Will Ireland that I couldn’t help but share. Those are captioned with From MM by Will.