I’ll be attending BlogHer ’14 tomorrow and the day after. It will be my first blogging conference. I’m nervous, excited, and apprehensive.
Reading about and preparing for BlogHer ’14 has made me take stock of what I want to get out of blogging and what I’ve accomplished so far.
My page views are few and far between. The only sponsorship offers I’ve received have been from scammers. I’ve started and already abandoned an eBook idea.
Still, I’ve been fortunate enough to have had 10 posts featured in various categories on BlogHer. I’ve had two posts published by ScaryMommy. I successfully completed the Ultimate Blog Challenge in January, publishing 31 posts in 31 days. One reader wrote to tell me that my “What My Depression Looks Like” post prompted her to schedule an appointment with her doctor to try again to get her chronic pain treated.
I hope one day to have enough material to publish an eBook, probably about parenting while living with depression. I hope that slowly but surely I am building a welcoming and safe space for people to talk about mental illness without fear of judgment, to share their experiences of being vulnerable and authentic, and to call out shame when we feel beat ourselves up for not being perfect.
As scared as I am of being surrounded by bloggers who probably have way more experience, much larger readerships, and are actually making money at blogging, I’m going to remind myself to use this intimidating experience as an opportunity:
- to soak up every bit of wisdom and encouragement they have to offer
- to be inspired by other people’s passion, dreams, and ideas
- to broaden my perspective on what is possible through blogging
- to get one-on-one feedback about how to write and edit effectively
- to meet new people who share my interests, my values, and my enthusiasm
- to find people who can guest post on my blog and/or will let me write for their blog
- to have a great time standing in my right to be there and owning that “I am a writer”
Check out my Twitter feed for updates from the conference.