What I learned at #BloggyBootCamp…

This past weekend I was able to go to one of the Bloggy Boot Camp events… in San Francisco. Not only was it the first time I was able to go to California and see the Pacific Ocean (yes, I have officially crossed that off the 101 in 1001 list now) but it was the first time I had met many, many friends in real life. Twitter created these connections for me. Reading their blogs developed them. But these relationships grew leaps and bounds when we exchanged hugs and bonded over things outside of the blog world. It really was amazing.

But back to my list. {I could talk about friendships made for an entire post.}

The 10 things I learned at Bloggy Boot Camp…

10. There is no reason to be nervous.
Everyone is walking into the same room, at the same time, for the same reason, with the same nerves. Some people just mask it better than others. And ultimately, we all just want to get to know one another.

9. If you are going to do a vlog (a video blog), make sure to prepare.
Jessica gave some amazing infomation (at 9am no less) on keeping your vlogs short, preparing your background (make sure to remove the kids pictures if you don’t want others to see them), and to check your lighting.

8. Ask someone you trust if this is good… Did I get my point across?
Jessica also said this little tidbit of information toward the end of her presentation. This is an invaluable piece of advice I think most of us forget… and then rely on comment feedback rather than trusting the people that truly know us.

7. Decide what and how much you are going to share on your blog. And get permission.
I think I could actually have an entire blog post dedicated to what Julie said… and well, here’s her outline of her presentation… but it was amazing to learn that it doesn’t matter what you put out there (and try to delete it later), at some level it stays out there forever.

Julie also passed along some insights from getting permission when featuring others (especially kids) on your blog to tracking those that visit your blog (particularly people that you wouldn’t want visiting you) and setting up privacy for facebook and your domain registrations.

And speaking of domain registrations…

6. Buy up your domains – as well as your kids names.
Pretty much as soon as I got home, this is what I did. Not only did I buy “dutchbeingme.net” but I also bought my nephew’s name and a couple others that I wanted to protect (and/or possibly use in the near future.)

5. Tiffany is pretty. :)
First, for those not familiar with SITS or Bloggy Boot Camp, Tiffany is one of the founders of these sites and has a huge desire to connect bloggers (and women in general) to others for support – and really she the person who deserves all of the credit for making these events the success that they are.

Not only that but all of her Bloggy Boot Camp friends will tell you – both on their blogs and on twitter – that Tiffany is pretty. And she likes hearing her voice in the microphone… which was awesome because she gave some amazing info and insight before/after each speaker.

4. Have a business plan for your blog.
Linsay had some great insight from the business and legal aspects of blogging. If you want to take your blog to the next level, surround yourself with the people (accountant, lawyer, etc.) that can help you achieve these plans.

3. Write, write, write… and when you have writers block, write.
Kristy spoke on writing… and to keep doing it – even if it’s only 5 minutes a day about nothing. Not everything needs to be post-worthy, just keep the creative juices flowing.


2. If it’s not fun to blog, stop.
I’m pretty sure it was Tiffany said this toward the beginning of the day… and I couldn’t agree more, especially since (well, as of right now at least) this is a hobby for me.

1. Be Authentic.
No matter if you are doing a vlog or deciding what to write, you need to maintain your voice. You must remain true to who you are.

So there it is. I’m not sure how I well I really did compacting this into 10 items into this rather long post. {I didn’t even get to highlight things from Ciaran, Jennifer or Ted!}

Thanks to the sponsors of the event… Mastermind, FRS Healthy Energy, Open Sky and Collective Bias.

This weekend was so much fun, filled with amazing people – amazing blogs – amazing stories. I already miss many of them and wish I could go to their houses just to chat – because as Tiffany has shared many times {on twitter at least} – “blog friends are real.”


  1. Amen! Well done.
    You have forgotten to mention bacon and cupcakes….so I’ve done it here.

  2. I love the top 10 format! It was a great conference and I was glad to be there too.

  3. 1. Be Authentic.
    No matter if you are doing a vlog or deciding what to write, you need to maintain your voice. You must remain true to who you are.

    That is the number 1 tip of all time and what I promised to myself when I started blogging.

  4. it was nice to finally meet you and love the 10 things I learned at BBC SF.

  5. i’m glad you had a good time AND crossed something off your list!

  6. We met in real life, finally!

    And you are as gorgeous and funny and smart and fun as I thought you’d be!

    CAN’T WAIT to see you in Philly.

  7. Great great tips!

    I have a question, where did you buy your domains at, how much did they cost, and do you have to re-buy or re-up those every year? (okay, so I guess that was three questions! lol)

    • Tracie – I bought my domains at godaddy… which is also where I have my hosting right njow. Will e-mail you with the options that you have!

  8. Okay. You just got me all pumped up for Bloggy Boot Camp in Philly. I mean, I was excited before but now I’m ready to LEARN. Some comments on your comments:

    #9 – I don’t think I should make a video unless someone is here while I’m taping telling me to SHUT UP. I talk to long. In real life too (you have been warned)

    #7 – Oooh. How do you track who visits your blog?

    #5 – Tiffany really like the microphone in Baltimore too 😉

    #4 – I NEED this advice!

    #1 – The moment you think you are writing the way you are supposed to, you need to stop. I couldn’t agree with that more.

    Thanks for sharing!!

  9. Great list! I can’t wait, until they have one in Chicago, next year. I’m *so* there, since it’s probably the closest to Detroit, they’ll get.

  10. Hey there! Great post! Mad Woman Behind the Blog already covered the bacon… somehow I missed the cupcake part…hmmm. Perhaps it was the altitude or the frost bite.

    Anyway, I’d be honored if you stopped by my Bloggy Boot Camp Post Link-Up and added this fine contribution!

  11. I have yet to write my post…I’ll just plagiarize yours…JUST KIDDING…duh! If anyone ever asks me I tell them #1 is the most important. You can instantly tell those who are not authentic and I do not read them regularly only when I am forced. Lindsay talk on copyright/trademark (a refresher for me) was great and was Kristy’s.

    Again, so happy to have met you!

  12. Great tips! I would really love to attend something like this, and based on your list, I’ll have to make it a point the next time one comes around my way. There’s so much that goes on in this community and I definitely want to learn from the people who have clearly mastered the art of blogging. I like that you point out there’s no reason to be nervous. I feel as though that’s what’s prevented me from attending in the past–I’m terrified of what people will think of me based on what I’ve written… the truth is, I’m sure everyone experiences these nerves to some degree or other. I have to learn to embrace them!

  13. Sounds like you had a fantastic time – I can’t wait for Philly!!!!!

  14. Sounds like it was a great event. I’m holding out for Chicago next year.

  15. I just realized that I read your post and did not comment. I swear I have manners. I’m not usually this rude. I think I read it from my iPhone though…

    AWESOME meeting you, always good to meet Julie’s!!!

    I’m kinda jealous that you get to see my people in Philly…I might hate you a little for that…

  16. Congratulationss! 😀 On seeing the Pacific Ocean, going to Bloggy Boot Camp, learning a bunch, and writing a great post! ;D You really are having a good string of events going on. I’ve never been to anything bloggy… I would love to learn about it and meet fellow bloggers! That must have been an absolute treat!!! Something I am sure to do one day. :) If you don’t mind and have a minute, could you expand on # 6 for me? If not… that’s OK. (I really should go to boot camp! 😉

    Have a good day!
    Corine :)

  17. I don’t know how we managed to go through BBC SF and NOT have a conversation – ack! I hope I see you in 2011 – San Diego for sure and I’m hoping a couple other pan out as well.

    Nice recap — you highlighted some GREAT points! I need to go buy some more domain names now – ciao!

  18. Thanks for sharing this list – I think it’s helpful.. I’ve considered doing vlogs … maybe I will!

  19. awesome advice!! bummer missed being there!

    and um…. am i too bold to ask… can you make my info stay in the little bars so every time i leave a comment it’s there???? ack, i know, that’s bold of me to ask. but i like when my info stays!! 😉

  20. Julie, it was great meeting you at Bloggy Boot Camp. Great wrap-up! I’m looking forward to following your blog, seeing some future vlogs (perhaps?) and staying connected. Wish we had had another day of Boot Camp and then another day of just playing tourist up in the City! Bacon cupcakes….ahhhh, that’s right… there goes my diet!

  21. testing comments

  22. Seriously, you have 3 posts up about Bloggy Boot Camp and I don’t even have 1 yet. I totally suck.

    Loved meeting you and loved your earlier story about the guy at the airport. Too funny. Must remember to add bacon cupcakes to my post too.

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