I‘ve been on my travels again, this time to Sheffield. The city totally rocked because not only does it do good pie, it’s got a lot green spaces and it’s been voted the happiest city in the country. I liked it also because it reminded me of my hometown Manchester due to the trams!
What was I doing there (apart from pie eating?) Well, I was there at WordCamp.
WordCamp happens all over the world, and it was born out of WordPress. It’s where all of the people in the digital sector who use the platform get together and give various talks about all things WordPress related.
I’ve been using WordPress for about 6 years. At aged 17 with not a clue with what I wanted to do in life, I discovered blogging. A hobby at first which then lead me to becoming a blogger and content creator as a full time career. Thanks guys!
The event was totally last minute for me. A few colleagues/ friends invited me and at first I thought it wouldn’t apply purely because I’m not a developer or a coder. It turns out I was completely off the mark. When I saw the schedule I was pleasantly surprised! Even more so after the talks.
I attended talks on a whole host of things from: handling a multi author blog platform, guidelines for a teenage WordPress community, social media law, useful plugins and other things that didn’t apply to me. I actually took a few ideas and thoughts from everything that day. In fact one of the talks inspired an idea for a new project this summer.
It was held at Sheffield University on a Saturday morning (9am – dedication) and finished at 5pm. By the end my brain was packed full of information (information overload) and I was glad of the notepad, a constant supply of coffee, biscuits and food.
One of my favourite parts was listening to the co-founders of WordPress Mike Little. It was refreshing to hear things like ‘there’s enough customers to go around’ and hearing him encouraging others to feedback and get involved with helping the community.
Essentially that’s what WordPress.com is all about- a community, where everyone helps each other out. I like that approach as it can be hugely applied to all walks of life especially within the business community.
I really enjoyed listening to a few women speakers also. It’s nice to see women in tech, in what’s a very male dominated industry ( I’m not gonna burn my bra.) I suppose I can say it’s inspiring, and spurs me on further!
The after party was great – it’s the only place where you’re allowed to talk shop without being considered a work bore! Although as I said on Twitter…
#wcsheff you enriched my mind but your after party nearly did me in… good times!!! 😉
Free drinks all night and an early check out the next morning made for an interesting collaboration. (Not the friendly kind.)
This May I’ve set myself a challenge of giving a few talks on my favourite subject – blogging for business.
I’m as shy as a mouse when it comes to ‘having a conversation’ with large groups. WordCamp was actually beneficial purely because I got to see so many incredible speakers – all with their own styles that I took a lot of pointers from.
It’s left me feeling more at ease with the concept of talking in public. Thanks to the organiser @mkjones for the useful advice along with many others who’ve been so insiteful.