Saturday really highlighted more than anything else, how much Type-A-Mom conference offered us as a community in general, and me as a writer specifically. I found the weekend strangely validating in a way that surprised me, as I am already a fairly confident person. It was interesting to get up to share what I had to share, and there – sitting in the audience – were the people I had come to listen to and learn from what they had to share! It was like the Twilight Zone Type-A style.
The first thing that happened Saturday morning was the Boiron Mom Market. Major kudos to Boiron for seeing the power of, and supporting the creativity of, mothers in general. All the booths at the Boiron Mom Market were mom-owned, mom-run or small, mom-interest companies. Really a complete delight to see the variety that showed up to display their creativity with us.
I helped out at the KikaPaprika table where we were giving away free burnout tees – these amazing shirts that are 50% organic cotton and 50% recycled water bottles. The colors available in this style are so varied with true-shade colors that any skin tone could be paired with a shirt sure to amaze. What I love best about the entire line is how comfortable and beautiful the clothes are.
After helping Stacey (@ecochicdiva) with the giveaways I went immediately into my first of two sessions. Joanne (@PunditMom) and I were sharing on Understanding the Long view Payoff of Blogging and I loved how we approached that session from two very different, but equally valuable, directions.
While I’m very new to building up myself as a platform, that has been Joanne’s main focus for awhile now. Meanwhile, my original focus was on web content production and creating a long-term, steady stream of income for my family so I could be home with my children and not put them in day care. Great!
Both goals are very valid reasons to continue doing what we are doing online and it was neat to hear how we both are seeing those months of work payoff. In fact, Joanne has signed a book deal and will be releasing her book in near the end of 2010. If you aren’t following her on Twitter yet, you want to be sure to do so! I feel fortunate that @CutestKidEver took detailed notes during the session for anyone who couldn’t attend.
The second session I did immediately after that was with Julie of @WritingRoads about Problogging – that is creating web content for other people. Harnessing your expertise as a web writer/blogger to do what they cannot or are not willing to do for themselves. She and I were totally on the same page in that we both feel this is a SKILL that should be paid for and compensated fairly. While our rates varied just a little bit (the cost of living in my area is much lower) they actually weren’t too far apart, and I think it probably surprised most of the people in the room that we feel confident charging that much.
Confession: Sometimes, I DON’T. I DON’T feel confident asking that price for my work. But I know in my head, even if not always in my heart, that it’s worth it. A company will spend MILLIONS on a 60 second commercial spot. I refuse to feel guilty second-guess myself about asked a few hundred for WELL-WRITTEN web content that will be with them forever. My prices reflect the level of my work. (Repeat that like a mantra if you must – My prices reflect the quality of my work….my prices reflect the quality of my work…)
The truth is if a company wants cheap content they can easily hire out $5 per article content from mills in India. How do I compete with that, do you ask? I DON’T. I don’t even TRY to put myself on that playing field because the game I am playing is so far above that it would be like asking a used car salesman for a customized Porsche. Apples – Oranges. There are companies out there who are willing to pay a FAIR price for excellent writing. Are you willing to provide it to them? (Whew! Now you guys got me preaching. Who took notes on this session and wants to write them up?)
After lunch was the Blogger Townhall Meeting where I spent much of the time chatting with @MoneywiseMoms about blogging in general, Mommy-Blogging specifically and how loosely defined it is and why some are so “protective” of the term and how I am not really, truly a “Mommy-Blogger” in the truest sense but I don’t care. I write what I write, when I write it and charge what I charge unless it’s going on one of MY websites and – well – I am totally ok with that. It was an interesting conversation.
Then came the Keynote address – great information – great consensus about the fact that it is ok for each of us to have unique goals, unique voices and unique methods of operation because WE ARE EACH UNIQUE.
Isn’t that the point? If I could do it exactly like you with exactly the same motivations and the same style, why would I be necessary? I wouldn’t! And that’s ok, right? Would you really want me to look just like you anyway?
Had a great time hanging out at the Wine and Cheese reception at the end, although I didn’t get to taste any of the wine everyone else raved about. I did get to sing my cool Type-A-Mom Blogging Parody. Someone let Blogher know that I’ve already started working on a Blogher rendition of R-E-S-P-E-C-T just for them so….. *grin*
I also finally met @MomSpark in person – someone I’ve greatly enjoyed tweeting with and commenting on her blog….definite plans to hook up at the zoo or something sometime. SO great to find a blogger within driving distance of where I live!
What about you guys? In what ways were you challenged at Type-A-Mom? What stood out to you as something you were glad you heard? Who were you thrilled to meet? How will your blogging and writing change as a result of what you learned?