Yesterday I had the absolute privilege of attending Mumsnet’s 5th annual blogging conference, Blogfest.
For me this was a big (and pretty exciting thing) to do.
I’ve been blogging since I found out I was pregnant with Lady P, but only really taking it semi-seriously since about August this year. Since then I’ve been lucky enough to get some great feedback and reach from fellow bloggers, so this was my first experience of calling myself ‘a real blogger’ and having a little bit to back it up with.
The run up all ended up being a bit rushed to be honest, and as I headed to the train station in the pouring rain with the prospect of delayed and cancelled trains, I worried it was going to be disasterous.
But then it hit me.
I am here. I don’t have a buggy to battle London public transport with. I don’t need to carry baby wipes. I am EARLY. And I’m doing it for me.
As I arrived at the venue, it struck me that there were obvious friendship groups here. How lovely, but I was on my own.
I feared it may be a bit cliquey, but after a few minutes of the odd smile here and there, they called us into the hall for the introductory speech, so it didn’t really matter.
At that moment I hesitated at grabbing one of the bottles of Innocent smoothie from the side, wondering if they were there for us, stood next to another blogger who also wasn’t sure if we were “allowed”.
She had the biggest smile and let out an infectious laugh as we both felt like naughty school kids taking something we shouldn’t. She turned out to be Alicia from Sunlover, and introduced me to Sunita from Lucky Things and Cee from Hey Is That Me, who became my buddies for the day. I don’t think I’ve laughed so much in a long time.
My soft grey matter absorbed some great Instagram tips from Emily Quinn of Makelight, became inspired to think about my blog as more of a brand from Steph of Don’t Buy Her Flowers, and discovered some exciting people starting out like Detective Dot and The Book of Everyone.
All in all, the day itself was just amazing. It was so well-organised and crammed full of great content, freebies, delicious food and of course, topped off with a generous allowance of much-needed prosecco.
But most importantly, I made new connections with other bloggers that I admire, and hope to keep in touch with in the future.
These people, and the others I listened to, have inspired me to give my blogging a kick up the arse – to really focus on what I’m good at. I’d wanted to find some direction and stop the scatter-gun approach, and thanks to #Blogfest16, I think I’ve found it.
Watch this space.