My thoughts on the Annual Bloggers Bash Awards
In case you missed the news, the FOURTH Annual Bloggers Bash Awards were held in London on Saturday May 19 2018.
There was another major event in London that weekend, luckily we managed to tune in to see the main bits during breaks in our blogging activities.
Did you know I’m a Hidden Gem?
First things first – I’m thrilled to announce I was voted 3rd in the Hidden Gem category of these awards. This is the category information:
Have you stumbled upon a blog by chance and discovered useful information or thought-provoking content? Is there a blog that doesn’t get the notoriety they deserve? Maybe they have such an original style you can’t help but read their posts. A blogger who you believe should get the limelight for a change is who deserves the Hidden Gem award.
Thanks so much to everyone who voted for me in these awards, it was my first ever nomination and making it even more special was the fact that I was able to attend the Bash in London, all the way from Australia!
This year there were approx 10000 votes cast for the awards, an increase from last year when there were about 6000 votes collected!
Congratulations to everyone who was nominated and especially the major winners in each category. Here are the results from the Hidden gem category:
Getting to the Bash
My blogging daughter, Melanie from The Wandering Darlings was up for nomination in the Best Pal section and I’d been nominated as a Hidden Gem, so we hatched a plan to attend the Bash together. As the Mathematician and I were planning on visiting the UK in May, it made sense that I factor in the Bloggers Bash in our dates. So ages ago I booked Melanie and I into an Airbnb in Chiswick for the Friday night, and as she was already in London for work, all I had to do was to get myself to London (from Cheddar) and meet up with her. You’ll be pleased to know that I did well not to get lost 🙂
It was sunny and warm as we walked from our tube stop to our home for the night. We negotiated the entry instructions and soon found ourselves in a charming and stylish split level flat. It was very comfortable, light, airy and full of stylish touches. We made ourselves at home before going for a walk to nearby Chiswick Business Park, the high street and having a spot of dinner along the way. Everyone seemed to be in high spirits for the Royal Wedding the next day (and the lovely weather was a bonus), I must admit to starting to feel slightly nervous about the Bloggers Bash. I was more worried that I’d be a disappointment to people or feel out of my depth!
I woke really early on Saturday morning to a glorious sunrise, mainly because I hadn’t shut the blinds the night before! It didn’t matter as I was far too excited to sleep anyway.
We took our time getting ready and luckily I’d packed a plan B outfit in case of warm weather and I had a last minute outfit change. We wandered down the streets of Chiswick, checking out the shops along the way, posing with the flags up for the wedding and finally got to the George IV pub where the Bash was being held. I peeked in and saw a few faces I recognised, took a deep breath and walked in, after posing for a photo outside first!!
Suzie and Hugh were the first people I saw and I recognised them from their blog and it was so good to actually meet them in real life. After a hug I felt a bit better, but it was still quite nerve wracking! I loved meeting these two particularly, as they have been so helpful and supportive over the years and they are just as nice as I thought they’d be 🙂
I was registered, given my name tag, goody bag, raffle tickets, competition form, evaluation and instructions for lunch and didn’t really take much of it in! Melanie had to tell me the instructions all over again! I
I then met the rest of the hard working committee, Shelley, Helen, Sacha, Adam, Graeme and Geoff and finally I looked around the room. The pub was a great venue with us off to the side in our private room but within sight of the big TV screens (for the wedding), the sunny garden and the bar for beverages.
I made a real effort and started talking to people. Some I recognised like Jill, Sam, Ritu, Lorna, Hayley and Em and others like Willow and Lauren ,once I knew their blogs, it all fell into place. Linda, Zoe, Jemima, Deborah, April, Marjorie, Claire, and Lucy are just a few new friends I made – although I have been following some of these blogs for a while!
It was weird in many ways, knowing these people through our blogs but actually talking face to face! But you couldn’t wipe the smile off my face all day. I kept asking people had they travelled far to get to the Bash, but I had no idea of the geography of the place for it to make any sense anyway, I think that’s a sure sign of my nervousness! We had blogging friends in common, we talked blogging non stop, we listened to Ritu’s inspiring talk on how she manages to fit it all in, blogging, working, family life…she’s a machine!
We had fun and we had cake, thanks to Ritu’s baking skills – yummy cake too!
We had a long break for lunch which was fantastic as it fitted in with the Royal Wedding which was being broadcast in the pub. I sat outside in the glorious sunshine talking with Linda, Jill and Melanie while we ate lunch together and watched the wedding. A lovely touch was the whole pub clapping and cheering when Harry and Meghan were announced as husband and wife. Life is good!
Back inside we had more awards handed out and it was always that much better when one of the winners was in the room with us, the feeling was magnified somehow when you saw the person’s reaction and you clapped that much harder for them. The awards were being live streamed through Facebook and I remember watching last year! When Sue from Sizzling towards 60 was announced as Runner-up in the Most Informative blog category I yahooed like crazy for my fellow Aussie blogging friend!
Then shortly after, Geoff announced me as the runner-up in the Hidden Gem and I was gobsmacked! My only problem was it was too late to let anyone know back in Australia and I didn’t have any internet reception anyway. Melanie informed her father, the Mathematician, and her sisters, sending a photo of me looking insanely happy with myself!
Sacha gave a great talk on mailing lists and the panel discussion was interesting, it goes to show that everyone blogs for a different reason and no one way is better than another, it just depends on our purpose. I did like the advice that we shouldn’t spread ourselves too thinly across social media though, pick one or two and stick with them.
We heartily thanked the committee, led by Sacha, for all their hard work and moved into the bar to continue our chatting and networking until we had to leave. Melanie and I took an Uber to Paddington and then caught the train to Bristol, before driving the last bit home to Cheddar. It was a HUGE day for us both and I was exhausted, excited and happy.
Thanks to the hard working committee for all their organising, I’m stoked to be an award winning blogger! I love the connections I have made and feel privileged to be included in such a great group of creative people.
Here are links to some of my favourite posts about the Bloggers Bash, including the winners list.
Meet the bloggers who attended the Bash – Hugh’s post
The Winners! A full list of all those nominated and the eventual winners
Sue’s exciting news and thanks – Runner up in Most Informative Blogger (original content)
Lorna’s thoughts – Second place in Best Overall Blogger category
Ritu’s take on the Bash – Runner up in Best Overall Blogger
Hayley’s post – Runner up in Best Pal
Losing the Plot – Second in Newcomer Blogger category
I can only say, again, how much I enjoyed meeting and talking with other bloggers at the Bash. Sometimes it can feel a bit lonely blogging away in isolation but this has shown me that we’re not that different really. We blog for different reasons, and in different ways but we all enjoy what we do. We are an encouraging, creative community and I value the support of each and everyone of you.
Huge congrats to everyone involved and thanks again 🙂
PS. Huge thanks to Duncan ‘The Bloke’ for his photos (especially the lovely one of me) – he can be found at http://www.instagram.com/duncanw68
You can also find Deb’s World here – let’s stay in touch!