Today I attended my first event to do with blogging, hosted by Manchester Girl Geeks (an amazing group who organise talks and workshops for women and girls with an interest in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics). The flyer promised talks from a range of bloggers including The Scientific Beauty whose blog I absolutely love.
Being new to blogging myself, and being someone who feels like a bit of an imposter by even starting to consider myself a ‘blogger’, I thought I would go along as a fun and interesting way to spend two hours on a Sunday afternoon. No pressure, just fun! Once I had arrived and had helped myself to a cuppa and a packet of mini party rings, I was so glad that I had bitten the bullet and bought a ticket. Plus, I was very grateful to have my friend Hayley there who definitely helped to steady my nerves! Everyone was so welcoming and friendly, it made me excited to have started a blog of my own.
The advice during the talks ranged from technical aspects of managing a blog to how to utilise social media platforms to publicise your blog. Something I found incredibly useful, was hearing from bloggers who had had the same doubts as me. That little voice in your head that comments “Who’d want to read anything you’ve got to say? Who do you think you are?” (and just to clarify, this voice was unfortunately not referencing the 1997 Spice Girls smash hit ‘Who Do You Think You Are?’)
Perhaps one of the most comforting things that I heard this afternoon was from @kitation who said that every one of us is unique in our own way and that even if you do something that is similar to other people, the chances are that those people will like you because you are like them. Internet trolls were mentioned a few times, but the bloggers were pretty unanimous that the responses to their blogs had been incredibly positive. There was still one fear that I had and I resolved to ask a question during the Q & A at the end of the talks.
Asking questions in front of a fair amount of people always makes me nervous, especially when these people are all very intelligent women! So I asked my question with what felt like a very shaky voice, where I asked for advice on telling people about my blog. I have shared my blog on Twitter (where not many people know me) and with some very close friends (who I know will say nice things! ha!) but I hadn’t bitten the bullet and shared it on…Facebook.
The response from the bloggers warmed my heart. It felt so lovely to hear that I wasn’t the only one to have worried about things such as ‘What will my friends from school say?’ ‘What if people I actually know start saying nasty things about me?’. Their experience again, had been that people were mainly positive and they had been pleasantly surprised by the response from their Facebook friends. Also, if someone is nasty well, that’s where the ‘block’ function comes into it’s own.
So, I have decided to share my blog just in case anyone found it interesting and also because I am trying to do things that scare me a bit more regularly. Take a look at my previous posts and please do let me know what you think. Leave a comment or find me on Twitter @makingitmindful