What It's Like To Be Conference-Famous

BlogHer Original Post

Last July I had the privilege of being one of a handful of bloggers who read their article at the BlogHer 2015 Voices Of The Year ceremony, and I became "conference-famous." It changed my life in more ways than you might expect.

What It's Like to Be Conference-Famous

My article was about the frustration I felt for the injustice of the police's killing of Eric Garner and no subsequent charges being filed against them.

When I finished reading my piece, I'm told there wasn't a dry eye in the room, but I wouldn't know because I couldn't see through the tears in my own eyes. Afterwards, in person and on social media, many people told me my reading was a highlight of the conference for them.

Working On Cool Stuff

After I read my piece, BlogHer cofounder Lisa Stone approached me and challenged me to lead a conversation on the issue of police violence and black men.

I was initially skeptical because my primary job is a tech startup entrepreneur and that consumes much of my energy. Well, that and my now three year-old twins. And since I don't fancy myself an expert on matters concerning police brutality and the black community, and out of respect for the gravity of the topic, I demurred.

After thinking about Lisa's suggestion for a few weeks, I decided I would take on the mantle of this important issue, and working with Lisa Stone, Elisa Camahort Page, Julie Ross Godar and Colleen Stinchcombe, decided to create a new hashtag: #WhatDoITellMySon.

We reached out to a diverse community of bloggers to have them contribute content about what they should tell their kids regarding how to tolerate racial injustice and avoid violence at the hands of the police.  

You can find all the wonderful contributions to the #WhatDoITellMySon series on SheKnows.com.

Building New Relationships

In working with the aforementioned SheKnows team, I've made a new set of friends, whom I can call, email, tweet, or FB message about almost any questions or concerns I have, and get their help with issues unrelated to blogging.

And don't let me forget the inimitable Rita Arens, who became my new bestie when she told me she was going to come on the stage and help me finish reading my article if I couldn't get through it. Rita also submitted a beautiful article to the #WhatDoITellMySon series.

Then there were the bloggers I connected with at the conference, super talented in their own right, and all of whom crack me up on Facebook.

One ancillary benefit to my new blogger relationships: Some of them actually took an interest in my business and wrote wonderful product reviews. And some of them even became customers. How cool is that?

I am so thankful for all of these new friendships.

There you have it. Participating in BlogHer can lead to your involvement in important new projects. But even it doesn't, you will make wonderful new friends who will fill your days on social media with joy and laughter. And who doesn't need more of that?

So if you're thinking about submitting a piece to the Voices Of The Year committee, do it. Do it now.


What are you waiting for? Submit your best (or someone else's best!) work to the 2016 Blogher Voices of the Year. Hurry! Submissions close May 8, 2016.

Announcing the 2016 Voices of the Year Call for Submissions from BlogHer & SheKnows Media

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