I had been blogging for close to a year before I met another blogger. I attended a meeting of the Vancouver Bloggers’ Meetup Group and met Carol Sill and Isabella Mori of Alphablogs, and heard of Northern Voice, the blogging unconference, from them.
I signed up for only the Saturday session, although I intended to go to the pre-conference dinner, being held in 2007 in the Volunteer Vancouver Building on Main Street. I didn’t make it, and apparently I missed a chocolate swan fountain or something equally spectacular/fabulous/brilliant.
NV07 Saturday it was raining as only Vancouver knows how to rain (Halifax, I suspect, has a clue, and I seem to recall a pair of lovely Italian claret-coloured shoes with pointy toes and decorative stitching that were shredded in a Halifax downpour). The bus driver(s) (and I think I had to hop on the same bus two or three times before I finally made it to the Forestry Building on the UBC campus) had only the vaguest idea of where I should be going. I was wet. I was very very wet. I missed the first session I’d hoped to attend. I glowered through the second Blogging 101 (photo was taken at this point, when my hair had stopped steaming slightly).
Things didn’t really improve from there and I left after lunch. I was just too wet and too miserable to stay.
But I ran into enough people I’d encountered at the Bloggers’ Meetup Group at NV07 to take another look at their blogs and wade a little deeper into the ‘sphere. I started blogging more. A lot more. I was frustrated by not knowing enough about the technology, and I started looking for books that could help me. I didn’t find any that didn’t seem hopelessly out of date. A four-year-old book on blogging when a gajillion blogs were being created every week? I think not.
I enthusiastically signed up for NV08. This time I made it to the kickoff dinner in the Tiki Lounge of the Waldorf Hotel. I was thrilled to be there, finally – the Tiki Lounge at the Waldorf is to me the equivalent of the Horseshoe Tavern on Queen West in Toronto – the epitome of uncool – which of course makes it one of the coolest places in town.
This year I attended back-to-back sessions – on podcasting, photo sharing, storing, and making. And this year social media was the phrase on everyone’s lips. I’m a social media consultant, said one pert young thing as she was registering. Why, I asked the striking woman to my right in what I hoped was a winningly humourous whine, can’t I be a social media consultant? You can, she replied. And so my friendship with Mhairi Petrovic was born.
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