Today started with a wardrobe malfunction, a crazy lady driver who went through not one but two red lights and a workman very quickly walking out near the road with the SLOW sign when he saw said crazy lady driver going through two red lights. It was like something out of Benny Hill. You had to be there – but any skerrick of mascara I may have been wearing quickly wore off with the tears of laughter I shed because of said crazy lady driving. Actually this lady isn’t crazy; she’s one of the most amazingly lovely and calm women I’ve ever met but hey, closed car parks into Etihad Stadium can throw anyone!
So, Day 2. James Tuckerman was an inspired choice for the start of day 2 with everyone a bit weary from the day before – either from the cocktail party or Day 1 information overload. His tone, humour and obvious knowledge had the audience extremely engaged as did Darren and Chris in the next session. As mentioned in my post of Day 1, Chris has an understated way about him which appeals. Sure, he makes bucks out of his blog, ebooks and book, but it doesn’t seem to be the be all and end all for him. Or whatever that saying is. Something about him has resonated with an audience the world over. Chris, if you ever need a virtual PA, just give me a yell.
The next session was Get paid to write: how to use your blog to build your brand. It was a delight to see Kerri Sackville and Allison Tait in the flesh, even if just to learn Allison has an erotic fiction out soon. I was super impressed with Valerie Khoo’s moderating skills for this session and the next. She really knows how to ask the right questions and I came out of the session wanting to write a bloody book which wasn’t my intention going in!
Taking a new blog to success was interesting also. What I took from that session was wishing I had some creative genius about me. Alas, it’s not to be. Gavin Aung Than’s Zen Pencils website is one of my favourites. At the risk of sounding like Molly, do yourselves a favour and check it out. Gavin mentioned he has 400,000 unique visitors in one month. Breathtaking really. Part of this he attributed to tweeting his cartoons to some prominent tweeters (but not in a spamming, stalker type way!) who then liked his work so much they re-tweeted him. Let’s hope it translates into sales, then perhaps Gavin can buy back the house he sold to start his own business!
I started flagging a bit after this but I did get to have a quick chat to Caz Makepeace from ytravelblog.com. My question to her and her husband Craig was how do they educate their children on all their travels? Well, their kids are 1 and 5 and while they’re not 100% sure of their plans next year, Caz is a primary school teacher so not too many problems at this stage, particularly with the kids so young. I’m still trying to think of ways to just up and go but the whole educating the kids thing…sigh. Before you say home school, just don’t!
After the final keynote of Sarah Wilson, who was delightful, Darren took all 250+ of us outside to sit in the Etihad Stadium seats. There were lots of photos taken and a poignant speech by Darren about the reach of bloggers but after that, all I could think was “geez, I can’t wait til footy season starts again”. Perhaps I need to start a footy blog with women of a certain age as my target audience!
These are just early reflections. We were asked to write down or think of one thing we would do after the event. I have some ideas but my mind is too tired for clarity at the moment.
So, to bed and a nice sleep in. Oh wait, I’m running the 10km in the Melbourne Marathon and have to be up at 6am tomorrow morning. Oh crap.
Til next year…