Ahhh London… capital of Great Britian, city of sights and wonders, home to the Monarchy and Food Blogger Connect since 2009. London to me is an uneasy melting pot of international cultures and political backgrounds, united often by necessity under the Queen’s English, where people drive on the wrong side of the road, eat kippers and beans for breakfast and where the tube doesn’t hold your toothpaste but rather daily commuters and tourists.
Arriving somewhat uneasy after watching a week of horrifying looting and the destroying of people’s lives and livelihoods, seeing the smiles and receiving the hugs of my fellow foodies at FBC reconciled me to a city which admittedly I am not very fond of.
I greatly enjoy Food Blogger Connect: for the people you meet there, the energy of our common passion for food along with our wish to be “good” if not always “successful” bloggers, keeps me coming back for more. And for the gracious and exhaustingly-working hostesses who put so much thought and effort into making the conference a success!
What was different this year:
- the number of men telling us (mostly) women how to improve what we do outweighed the number of women doing the same
- many more bloggers from European countries were present this year -I met bloggers from Hungary, Bulgaria, Greece, Serbia, Kazachstan, Poland, Italy, France, and Germany (last year many people from Canada attended I believe this year they were very few).
- we spent more time indoors than last year
- the food was better and we “cooked” more
- the tips, suggestions and knowledge-sharing was even more valuable to me this year as I had started blogging only after having attended last year’s conference
- good and interested sponsors
- wine played a role too
- new creative “technical” talents were able to present their foodie helpers products
- the ultimately successful bloggers inspired those struggling to find the voice, place and money to follow their passion
What made it difficult from my perspective – what will make it even better in the future:
- the venue – as Bethany says “we’ve outgrown it” – I agree
- the language barrier: although most bloggers attending write in English, many do not since their public doesn’t. Following the Queen’s English in it’s many class nuances for 3 days is a challenge even for us native speakers, for non-native speakers it is very, very difficult and needs to be taken more into account in the future.
- the amount of speakers was well meant and covered a fantastic range of subjects interesting to the blooger but was just too much – the lesson here I believe is less is more .
- the technical problems with Skype were frustrating for the organizers and those invited as “virtual speakers”
- if, as Jaden from Steamy Kitchen says, the European blogger scene is 3 years behind the US and I would venture to say Great Britain as well, then it may require a different kind of conference focus and venue
- a balance of topics for new attendees and returning ones, could increase the learning value for all
Don’t get me wrong here, I love this conference and commend the work and effort going into it and I also believe it can be made even better!!! I have given my feedback to the Team and very, very, very much look forward to FBC 2012 – where and whenever it may be.
Love and hugs to my new and previous FBC friends – you light up my life and inspire me!!!