Thursday, May 6, 2010

Blogging Conference Confusion

It all started when I thought about looking for a blogging conference. Blogging has become so mainstream in the past half decade or so, that the number of conferences available to Internet addicted folks (like me) is overwhelming. In order to narrow down my choices before I could decide which conference to attend, I had to ask myself this question. “What type of blogger am I?”

Am I a mommy blogger like the women on Babycenter.com? Most of them are stay-at-home moms so I have a hard time identifying with the struggles they face. Then I think that maybe I should define myself as a “working mom” blogger. But to be honest, I try not to write about my work on my blog. My career in petroleum engineering is very structured, analytical and I always strive to appear professional in that setting. My blog is more laid back, humorous, personal, and is an outlet for me to express my creativity. If you met me in a work setting, you would meet a very different Stephanie than you would meet at say, at a blogging conference.

Once I started trying to decide what type of blogger I am, I found it easier to determine what type of blogger I am NOT…

I am a Christian, but I do not write regularly write about my relationship with God so I would not say that I am Christian blogger like Angie Smith (Bring the Rain).

I love to read, mainly books that you would find on the best seller’s list, both fiction and non-fiction but I have not found time to be in a book club or discuss the books that I read. (With the exception of this one review I did two years ago). Note to self, write a blog post about books that I have recently read. Book giveaways are not something I promote, because I get most of my books from the library and they might frown on me giving away their newest releases.

I am a member of the Dallas Museum of Art (DMA) but I would not consider myself an arts blogger like my friend Denise. We often attend a lecture series together sponsored by the DMA but I rarely get around to writing a post about these events. We are going to hear Laura Bush speak about her new book on Friday, May 7th so I will try to get around to posting about it in the next week.

I am definitely not a style blogger. It is sad to admit this but more than 75% of the clothes I buy for myself or my kids come from the following stores… Target, Old Navy, Baby Gap or The Childrens’ Place. I do buy some of my clothes for work at Ann Taylor Loft (outlet store) or New York and Co. I have three pairs of black high heels (not a designer name among the three) that I wear with my standard work outfit of black pants and blouse or cardigan sweater, so it is safe to say that I am not up with the current fashion trends.

I am also not a food/diet/exercise blogger. My blog posts are not about my goal to get back in shape after having Baby T (one year ago this month), so that I can break out my bikini at the beach next week. I do not write about my goal to eat REAL food and to cook most of the food that my family eats. We visit local farmer’s markets for fresh produce and this year we planted our first vegetable garden, but I will probably never get around to posting about that either.

Once I exhausted all the categories of blogs that I did not fit in, I decided to look back through my posts and see what theme emerged. And I think I finally found it. Family. My posts are about what goes on in our family. Yes, most of my blog is about the kids because they are cute, funny, and a constant source of inspiration. Without them, I would not get to write about potty training, traveling with kids, tantrums, mommy guilt, mommy-daughter playdates, sickness and snot.

Because I write about my kids so much, I think I can elbow my way into this exclusive "mommy blogging" clique and try to to find a place to fit in. But I am still stuck scoping out a blogging conference to attend. BlissDom, Mom 2.o Summit, The Relevant Conference, Bloggy Boot Camp, Casual Blogger Conference, evo '10. Wait, those last two look really cool and branch out beyond "Mommy" territory. One of them in particular is so HOT that it sold out six months in advance (BlogHer), so I can cross it off my list. Others I have already missed in 2010 so I will put them on my calendar for next year, but I need to keep track of how far in advance that I need to register. Are there any tips from you other bloggers out there? Is anyone going to be attending a blogging conference this year? This would be my first time attending a conference so I need some advice from experienced bloggers!

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