“It’s like Wal-Mart the day after Thanksgiving,” I thought to myself while trying to snag a Diet Coke before the luncheon with Martha Stewart.
There was little kindness from the other attendees in that instance or when trying to find a place to sit during the sessions. It seemed everyone was in it for their own mannerless selves, and they were going to whoop up on others who might try and get in there first/attempt to take a free sample from a vendor before they did/grab a fork so I could actually eat the meal for which I’d waited just as long as they had.
Between being herded into meals with 5000 of our closest blogger friends (Or non-blogger friends; I kept hearing rumors of people there who don’t blog. To which my question would be a hearty WTF?), fighting for seats in sessions (I sat on the floor in half of the sessions. It was uncomfortable and hot.), and people grabbing freebies in the Expo Halls without bothering to chat with brand reps, I was unimpressed.
It made me so very glad that Type-A Con was my first blogging conference earlier this year.
Other than that. I had an absolute blast. I knew I would.
I went with Heather and Kelly (or Heller) to dance with real live Rockettes at Radio City Music Hall. We learned a few quick steps in their rehearsal studio and lined up and and kicked and smiled and learned what it takes to be a Rockette during the Q&A. The minimum of which is a height of five feet, six inches. Alas, I will never be a Rockette.
Spending time with old and new friends in one of my favorite cities in the world–always a plus.
Winning a new Galaxy S III phone from Samsung after my lesser phone (also previously known as “My Precious”) had an unfortunate incident with a New York City sidewalk the night before made this sad panda a happy one. Thanks, Samsung!
Having the opportunity to go to the Room Key Party to learn more about them while drinking watermelon mojitos at a rooftop party? Works for me.
Seeing Once the Musical and having my faith restored in humanity and all things beautiful was fantastic. I beg of you. Go see that show. They sell their wine in sippy cups and the bar on the stage becomes a working one during intermission. I’m also going to say something important here: It was better than Wicked and Next to Normal. I know, I know. Don’t throat punch me. It’s true.
Lately I had been having an existential crisis as to why I blog (among other things). I consider myself a writer primarily, but I also love blogging as a related creative outlet. However, I’m having a hard time reconciling the world that blogging is becoming, especially when faced with people who are only at blog conferences for the swag.
Don’t get me wrong. I like swag. But that is not a reason to go to a blog conference. It is merely a bonus.
When I started blogging I was writing because I have to. Because I’m supposed to. Because I was born to. Another blog I started in 2007 (and regretfully stopped in 2009) had the tagline: “This is my blog. If you don’t like it, you don’t have to read it.” When I started Southern Spark in October 2011, I thought I had to go corporate in order to have a successful blog, but what I’m realizing is that I just don’t have to do that. I can only be me, which is good, because that’s all I’ve got. If brands like it, fine. If they don’t, so be it. (You all like me.
Everyone Most people do.)
Will I attend BlogHer13? I’m not sure yet. All of the perks that a large conference offers are also the downfalls. There are simply too many people, but without those people, it is much harder for a conference to attract large brands and sponsors that allow for things like the Rockettes, Martha Stewart, and President Obama (the last of which we completely skipped, because hello? Free wine at an off-site party. Just kidding. We had already committed to meeting with MindStream Academy and a tour of City Winery, and we don’t break our appointments with wine.) Considering the parts I disliked the most were actually conference issues, I may just go with a Party and Expo pass next time. Or I might just try out some other conferences.
Will you attend BlogHer13? If not, what conferences will you attend? And can I room with you? I only snore sometimes and hog the bed always.