If you’ve been reading my posts you know that this past weekend I went to the first annual BlogPaws 2010 conference in Columbus Ohio. You also know that I flew standby and had an airport adventure that I won’t soon forget.
So here’s what I learned at BlogPaws 2010:
1. We pet people are a weird bunch, and we like it that way. Sitting at a table during one of the meals, I casually threw out a thought just to see what kind of response I’d get: “We sure are a weird bunch, aren’t we?” The table lit up with agreement that indeed, we are different. Happily different. And you really get to see that when you get us all in the same room.
2. Pet people are very generous. Very generous. I met and heard about dozens of bloggers raising thousands of dollars for animal-related charities around the world. And they did it all via their blogs – reaching out, writing about charity, putting the spotlight on causes and animals. The silent pet auction at the event alone raised a few thousand dollars for three animal shelters.
3. Pet people are very friendly. I’ve always met great people at writing conferences and BlogPaws was no exception. Even more, I felt like people wanted to talk to each other just because they enjoyed chatting, rather than trying to see what they could get from them. Which often happens at conferences. Can this editor get my book published? Can someone sell you this product? Here, people seemed happy just to be together.
4. People think backyard chicken farming is cool. Every time I told people that I have two dogs, a cat and six chickens, they all wanted to hear about the chickens. In fact, one magazine asked me to write a piece about my chicken experience, humor and all. The chicken trend is growing, and for the first time in my life I’m ahead of the fad.
5. And last but certainly not least, you should never fly standby if you have to be somewhere. What would have been a 6 hour drive to Columbus turned into a 13 hour airport standby adventure – each way. Which was exhausting, but also gave me the chance to meet and chat with some great people, especially on the way home – Lynn; Diane; the sweet girl starting high school next year; Chris who works in insurance; and airline employees Kelly and Anthony who kept me sane while I waited in Baltimore on my way to Columbus.
All in all, BlogPaws 2010 was a great opportunity to meet other pet bloggers and, for me at least, get out of my own little writing cocoon.
I told someone that I’d heard once that a woman speaks about 40,000 words a day and that I’ve saved all of mine up for months to use at BlogPaws. Now my vocabulary account is drained and I need to restock for next year’s event.
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