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Wednesday, June 17, 2009

BlogHer freakout #1

There's this thing that I'm going to in a few weeks. BlogHer. Maybe you've heard of it? Might ring a bell? (For those of you not going, I am sorry but this post is all about it. I've been there, I've wanted to go twice previously. I get how it can be to listen to it all the time. Please forgive me though, because I need to talk about this.)

So um, yeah, I am going to be part of the Community Keynote at the conference. A post that I wrote was submitted by the lovely and talented Stacey. I told her she could submit it when she asked, because I honestly didn't think it would get chosen. I know that sounds bad, but it's true. I have no pre-conceived notions about my writing. I know it's not the best. It's just me, raw and un-cut.

However my post did get chosen. I am absolutely honored by this. I can not even explain how honored and thrilled I am. To be a part of something like this is just beyond me. But I am going to be part of this. I am going to get up there and read my post to the two five gulp hundreds of people who could possibly be in the room.

Can you feel my fear over the screen?

I am terrified. I have no doubts that I can do it. That's not the problem. I may talk to fast and sweat a bit, but I am positive I can get through it. But I'm still scared shitless. That's a lot of freaking people, yo. Serious. Some of the blogging greats will be reading during this keynote. People who I adore, people who are extremely great writers. (I did hire a professional hand holder, a drink giver and possibly a body guard. Won't they be sad when they realize, I pay in Jelly Beans.) I don't know that I measure up.

This came up after I realized that I was already nervous about the conference in general. Nervous being a mild word. Nightmares. I'm having BlogHer nightmares. Going to this conference is so far out of my comfort zone, I can not even begin to tell you.

I've been doing this blogging gig, off and on since 2005. But I've never gone to a conference. I've literally only met four blogger. I don't tell people that I blog. I won't tell people when I get back. My family and friends think I am going on a girls weekend. That is just the way it is.

So I'm scared. I don't know what to expect. I've heard all the stories, the rumors and seen all the posts for years. But reality is different.

I'm hoping that some of you who have gone before can help me out on a few small questions I have. Might put my mind at ease a bit. Anyone of you who is new to this too, maybe we can be buddies? Having buddies is always better than wandering around by yourself. Right?

Ok, here goes nothing.

1. Does it matter if I wear jeans and flip-flops the entire time? I keep hearing people discuss dresses and such, but that's just not something I'm into. But I don't want to be the only one looking like her wardrobe sucks.

2. Business cards? Is this like a must? Are you doing it?

3. How many of you really think you'll go to the Community Keynote?

4. Am I the only one scared shitless?

5. If I hide in a closet, will one of you bring me drinks?

I'll leave it at this for now. I'm working on another post, one that I stole from Undomestic Diva, on what you should know about me before we meet in person. Maybe you should know that I am a totally idea thief. Nah, you all knew that already.

Okay, halp, please.


Andrea's Sweet Life said...

You'll do GREAT! I was a nervous wreck last year, but Meghan (AMomTwoBoys) held my hand and I had a BLAST. We'll be there for you, girl. And even save you a seat!

And HELL YES I will be at the community keynote!

Dress however you want - they recommend comfy. Sometimes you will sit on the floor if there are no seats left at the classes. Evening time is up to you!

chirky said...

1. Dress in whatever makes you most comfortable, most confident. You'll see people there in a variety of styles, some in jeans/tees, some in dresses, some in slacks, some in shorts. This is entirely up to you.

2. Bring business cards, even if you only bring 50. They don't have to be fancy - you can order from a ton of online sites, or you can print up your own. They're fun to trade, and will make you look like you know what you're doing. Bring more if you have serious networking/mingling plans (with both attendees and sponsors).

3. This is a general session, so almost everyone attending BlogHer will be there. Not to freak you out even more.

4. You're not the only one who is nervous and/or overwhelmed. We're having a 'newbie breakfast' Friday morning, which I hope will put you to ease some. Just keep in mind that everyone is there to have fun, to learn, to meet other people. Number one key to success: simply introduce yourself. :)

5. I wouldn't recommend hiding in a closet, but if you do, make sure someone knows WHICH closet to bring drinks to. ;)

Amazing Greis said...

OMG, I posted about this same thing LAST NIGHT. But I'm not talking at the Community Keynote, so I don't have that to fret about. But, I'm a newbie as well, my BlogHer cherry will be popped in July and it's pretty nerve racking. :) But you already know that.

1. I'll be wearing jeans and flip flops for the sessions, that what I'm most comfortable in, so I will totally be rockin' it. For the parties and stuff I plan on dressing up a little more, probably jeans and a cutsie top. I don't have dresses, but if I find one that flatters my body I may get it. LOL

2. I'm planning on getting business cards. Not sure how many, but that way I can feel uber cool and can exchange them will all the AWESOME new people that I meet.

3. I will definitely be at the Comm. Keynote. Duh, gotta see you up there and @Mamaspohr and so many others. Can't wait!!!!

4. You are definitely not the only one scared SHITLESS. I'm pretty scared, totally out of my comfort zone as well, but we shall get through this together, promise!

5. I will totally bring drinks to you if you're hiding in a closet/corner/bathroom. But I'll definitely try to coerce you out first. LOL Or we may be hiding together, time will tell.

Liz said...

Being a girl sucks. Why do we gotta worry what other people think so darn much?

Sorry I am of no real help on your questions. I haven't been, won't be there this year... I will be sad to miss the meeting of cool people, etc., and will live vicariously through the tweets and post of the hordes attending. Anyway...

I have a hunch that no matter how freaked out you might find yourself, you will not regret the choice to go. :-) And by the end, you will have had a blast.

Jaden Paige said...

OK, I have nothing great to say about this, because I've never gone... But I had to comment and just say... jealoussss!


I am. I would love to go. Maybe someday. Although... I don't think I'd have the balls to speak. So, there's that. But for sure? I'd bring you drinks. ;)

Anonymous said...

Nope, I am TOTALLY TERRIFIED too... and I am usually quite the outgoing and confident lady.

Also, CONGRATS, because Issa? That's effing awesome that your post was chosen. I will BE THERE.

Also I really really really want to be your buddy. Please? We can be scared together.

Also I may or may not have nice clothes. Depends on the budget next month! Lol. I don't own anything nice right now.

I am getting business cards, mainly so I have something to hand someone when they hand it to me. ;-)

Also I'll be there in that closet if you do hide out, with drinks. Mucho drinks.

Headless Mom said...

I soooo can't wait to meet you. If it's any easier I'll be in Denver for about 2 1/2 weeks and we could meet for coffee (or wine?) so at least you know one face going in? Let me know...

1) Wear your jeans if that's what you're comfortable in. I wore capris last year and it was perfect for me. I did dress up a little more in the evenings and I'm glad I did but I know of others that just wore their jeans and were fine. I told Greis last night-JUST BE YOU!

2) Get the cards. I got 200 last year and still have some. 100 should be more than enough. Look at it this way, if you have them then people will be able to link to you later! Cards were the only way that I remembered half of the people that I met.

3) Those people that say that it was the best part of the conference last year aren't lying. Those that missed it last year regretted it. It will be full; you'll do GREAT!

4&5) I was nervous last year, so I get it but on this side? Nothing to worry about! You'll be having so much fun that you won't want to hide in a closet for fear of missing someone that you really, really want to meet.

debra said...

Whatever you learn about BlogHer this year, you MUST share with me for next year. I would have no idea what to wear or what to bring or how to work it either.

You are going to be GREAT at the reading. Just remember, it is only a few minutes and it will be over. ENJOY, ENJOY, ENJOY!

EatPlayLove said...

Congrats, I am so happy for you. The list of speakers is fabulous, you should be so proud!

As far as conference advice, I have never been but I think you should be yourself. If you are feeling jeans and flips go for it.

Best of luck, I'll be thinking of you and waiting patiently for a follow up post...

Kim @ said...

I wanna go. :-( I can't, doh. But I wanna. And I could NOT speak in public in front of people. I'd have to be completely and totally drunk. A lot. Maybe you could do that?

That whole "picture everyone in their underwear" thing makes me worry. I'd be all, "Damn, am I dressed wrong for this event?" So I say booze.

Have fun. I wish I could go, too. Maybe one day.

Bridget said...

I'm so excited for you!!! I can't wait to hear you! I'm scared shitless, too, and glad to know I'm not alone!

I'm planning on comfort clothes. That's kind of all I own.

The business card things seems standard. Guess I better hop on that kinda soon, huh?

Can you save me some room in the closet. I might need to drop in a freak out every now and then.

Can't wait to meet you!


Piece of Work said...

YOu're going to do great! And congratulations on being chosen, I'm not at all surprised.

anymommy said...

I'm so glad you posted this. I had a ton of these questions as well. Guess I better order some cards, huh?

And oh, you will not be hiding. I need you. I will be clutching your hand tightly and we will brave the crowds together, with drinks.

Kate Coveny Hood said...

That is fantastic news! You'll be fab.

I've only been blogging since last summer, so I've never been to BlogHer. And I won't be there this year since I'll be at the beach with my family. But if I was there, I would absolutely talk you down off the ledge when it was your turn to take the stage.

I do have some advice for you based on conferences in general:

1. Assume that everyone wants to meet you. Because it's probably true.

2. Try to make plans to meet up with friends before so you don't feel like you're all by yourself when you arrive. That can be overwhelming at best and terrifying at worst.

3. Don't worry about what other people are wearing. If you are a flip flops and jeans kind of girl -then that's what you should be wearing! It's not like people blog in stilettos!

4. Get the business cards. They're not expenseive and you can get the cute mini ones (check out People reallyl will be passing them out and they're useful for keeping track of who you met.

That's a lot of advice from someone not attending... But I really do hope you have a wonderful time and look forward to reading all of the post mortems when everyone gets back.

JD at I Do Things said...

Hey, there! I'm also reading at the Community Keynote. And may I second your quote:

"That's a lot of freaking people, yo."

Yeah. I can't answer all your questions, having never been to BlogHer before either, but I can tell you you're not the only one who's scared. But we're gonna have so MUCH FUN!!!

I will say this: if you wanna wear jeans and flip-flops, then that's what you wear.

JD from I Do Things So You Don't Have To

Fairly Odd Mother said...

I am SO happy for you! I can't wait to meet you in person and hear you read.

I get all tweaked out about the clothes b/c I don't spend a lot on my things, especially shoes which I know are what some women spend the most on! But, I'm going to bring what makes me comfy. After reading Jennifer's post on Playgroups are No Place for Children, I'm rethinking my 'evening wear' and will bring a dress or two.

becky @ misspriss said...

That is awesome. I can't wait to see you read.

As chirky said, dress comfortably. I mentioned taking suits one year & everyone scoffed at me, telling me not to bother. It's much more casual than that.

I take biz cards from Vista Print. They're free, and you only have to pay shipping. It's fun to hand them out to people you meet, and get some in return, so you can later go back and check out their blogs.