Creativity Flows When Bloggers Meet Up

Every so often, as I sit down to write a new blog post, I get that nagging sense of discouragement and seriously ask myself “Why do I blog?” “What would happen if I stopped?”

Do you ever ask yourself questions like that? I think we all question our commitment to our blogging journey from time to time.

Early this year I sought inspiration once again as I pondered why I keep blogging, in this post Need More Inspiration? Attend a Blogging Event. 

When I ask these questions, the answer I keep coming back to is two-fold:
1.  I enjoy talking about the art of writing and the craft of blogging with like-minded people.
2.  Being able to freely express my words in published posts and share my photography floats my boat like nothing else!

Connecting with other bloggers is exciting!

I follow and regularly read many bloggers and look forward to their stories, articles, photos and ideas. If the online relationships with other bloggers is gold, then actually meeting them in person is platinum!

Over the last three years of serious blogging, I have managed to meet quite a few bloggers in person. Although most bloggers engage each other by reading and writing comments, conversing face-to-face is beyond special!

What If You Can’t Attend a Blogging Event?
The next best thing you can do is to try to meet local bloggers from your own area, city or state. I have been very lucky to meet several fellow bloggers this way. I have found local bloggers by reading their “About me” page. Now you may see why those descriptions might be helpful.

There is just something about going to lunch with another blogger and talking about blogging that is super exciting!

I recently had the joy and pleasure of meeting up with three other bloggers. We all connected both through our blog genre and geographically. Although Janis, Kathy and Donna consider themselves “retirement bloggers,” Liesbet is self-employed and I am semi-retired working as a part-time university lecturer. We all have some freedom to travel and can experience leisure on our terms.

And that was the beauty of our connection.

Donna was in Southern California on a home-exchange, Liesbet is currently house-sitting in San Diego, while Janis and Kathy live in Southern California. I used the holiday weekend and my school schedule to my advantage, along with extensive family who live in San Diego, to factor in my trip south from Northern California. Note: Liesbet could not join us on this weekend, but she met up with Kathy and Donna earlier in the month–she was with us in spirit.

And the planets aligned for a fun weekend.

Fellow bloggers meet up for fun and blogging advice

Another perk of developing online connections is the opportunity to share your insights on other blogs and in turn, offer them the opportunity to guest post on your blog. I think this idea of cross pollination is critical for meeting even more bloggers. When I guest posted for Donna last month, I met and followed other bloggers, extending my own network and creating even more connections.

Blog Housekeeping

At our meet-up, we all had questions about blogging. As we chatted, and shared ideas, I learned some important things about my own blog.

Not long ago, through WordPress dot com, my blogging platform, I signed up for WordAds. I see many bloggers who have ads enabled on their websites and there is potential to earn a few dollars. Donna commented that the ads were annoying and tempted her to click off my blog…and she’s a friend and regular reader! How many others felt that way or just clicked away? Egads!

So, as we chatted, I disabled the Word Ads feature. Am I going to miss that $2 a month I was making? Nope!

I also checked some of the widgets in my sidebar while we talked about the pros and cons of Instagram. To my horror, my widget linked not to my Instagram page where I share my other photos, but to my PayPal donation site! I fixed that right away.

For someone who is not intending to monetize my blog at this point, I must have looked like a money-grubbing fool sending unsuspecting readers to endure unwanted ads and then donate money.

But that’s what feedback provides. A fresh look at your own blog.

We really do have fun while working!

We also traded some war stories about watermarking images, dealing with social media and privacy issues as a blogger. I told Janis I gave up any kind of privacy attached to my online persona years ago. I asked Donna to Google my name and she found at least 10 pages of links with my name, some from work, school, organizations and blogging. If you blog, you are out there for the world to see!

Out of the four ladies, I had met three of them in person before. Reconnecting was a blast and getting to know Donna and her husband Richard, who hosted our visit, was a joy!

As part of our desert meet-up, we all agreed to share our views and experiences today. Please visit my dear friends and read about their perspectives.

Janis at Retirementally Challenged

Kathy at Smart Living365

Liesbet from Roaming About

Donna from Retirement_Reflections

Our little group is entertaining the idea of a Southern California meet-up this time next year. If you are in the area or would not mind traveling, please contact one of us. Stay tuned for details.

If you are looking for my usual Weekly Photo Challenge post, I am sharing it on Sunday.

My signature

68 thoughts on “Creativity Flows When Bloggers Meet Up

  1. If the online relationships with other bloggers is gold, then actually meeting them in person is platinum!

    What a lovely sentiment. I’ve only just started (re-started) blogging and I’ve come across so many wonderful bloggers so far.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Hi Terri! Yes was/is wonderful to meet other writer/bloggers in person. So glad to spend most of the day with you when you were visiting and not only talk about our “work” but also about life and things that matter to us. Truly a great way to connect. Thank you for making the trip and I look forward to next year! ~Kathy

    Liked by 2 people

  3. I think it is one of the big benefits about being real blogging friends and that we can share our opinions and be honest about each other’s blogs – what we think are pros and cons. During our mini-meeting, the three of us also agreed to let each other know what we dislike (and like). Offering suggestions is always helpful, and I have done so (privately) on several occasions. I”m glad you had this candid chat with Donna. I’m not a fan of ads and affiliate on blogs either, but understand why people do it. I just never click on them. 🙂

    Love the title and feature photo of your blog, Terri. You are one thoughtful and original woman! Looking forward to seeing you soon again.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Oh, forgot to mention that I totally agree with you when it comes to blogging and losing our privacy. When we put ourselves out there, on the internet, we expose ourselves. Since I am very transparent when it comes to my writing, my blog, my articles, my personality, my priorities, my responsibilities and sentiments as a pet and house sitter and our business, the internet provides. I challenge anyone to do a Google search with my full name. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Blogging has become its own social forum and I cherish the blog friendships I’ve made. I started my blog as a way to promote my writing, hoping interested agents would be impressed by the quality of writing on my blog. I’ve since learned that Facebook is the preferred platform for writers as readers tend to follow FB far more than blogs and agents want writers to have readers. So I’m looking at this whole issue, trying to find what will work best for me. Thank you, Terri, for your special perspective.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Hi, Terri – Thank you again for an amazing get-together. The warm, outgoing generosity that you show online was fully visible in ‘real life’ as well. I have learned so much from you both on and off-line! See you again next year! Can’t wait!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. That is so fun that you have been able to meet up with other bloggers. I think that is great that you get tips from each other on how to make your blogs even better. I have never met any bloggers before. I think that would fun. I like how you said meeting bloggers in person is platinum!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I’ll say it….totally envious! I recently went to a local WordCamp (yup, your suggestion!) but it was predominantly small business owners and website developers. While interesting to meet, not another blogger in sight…and unfortunately, I was “just a hobby blogger” and that apparently is the bottom of the importance ranking. :-(. Learned some things….will show up on my blog & I hope you’ll extend the watch your back to me in the blog goes wonkers. But it was not creatively inspiring for my blogging self. Sigh. I’ll try to get some from you … I always do!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Meeting other bloggers is pure magic for me, Terri. Although a little nervous at that first meet, I now look back at those meetings and think how lucky I am and also think about the missed opportunities I’d have missed if I had not started to blog. My blogging friends are not only an important part of my day but an important part of life.

    Thanks for sharing the day with us. I’ll be switching off WordAds just as soon as I post this comment. 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You have been an inspiration to me Hugh, with your blog and encouragement! I totally agree with you about blogging being important to our lives. funny about the Word Ads, huh? To each his (or her) own, I guess. I don’t miss it, the ads were annoying me too, on my own blog!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I look at blog posts that have gifs in them, in the same way, Terri. They are far too distracting, and I soon end up leaving the post unfinished and unread. I never thought about the WordAds doing the same, but I’m glad that Donna mentioned it to you. We’ve her to thank. 😀

        Liked by 1 person

      2. I agree and I can see the difference on your site. I’ve seen so many self-hosted sites trying to monetize and their websites are full of junk, popups, click-throughs, etc. Too distracting and I’m grateful to Donna for saying something. We should all be able to be frank with each other and I extend that invitation to you 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  9. What a fun and inspirational meet up! I’ve never met any of my blogging friends in person but would love to Someday! Thanks for sharing your experience! It is helpful to have an outsider look at your blog and see what is working or not. I’ve done that a couple of times and it is always insightful.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. What a wonderful post, Terri. I have had the opportunity to meet 5 bloggers so far but none of them lives in The Netherlands. Two I met in London and three others visited me while on vacations here. I would love to meet regularly with other bloggers and create a group as you did.
    I for one would love to meet you in person too.
    Thanks for this post.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Hi Terri,
    I haven’t “seen” you in a while. Happy Thanksgiving!
    I did go to one blogging conference but nothing much came of it. I’m tempted to go to more but I could be using the time to blog, LOL. Thanks for sharing.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Hi Terri, you’ve got it right, blogging connections are amazing, it’s really the best part of blogging. Sometimes when I think about quitting I think of my blogging family and I think, you can’t walk away from family. Thank you for this post, it inspired me and made me a little teary-eyed. Dropped by from #BloggersPitStop but always always happy to be here, with you and everyone else. 🙂
    Hope this weekend treats you kindly, off to share so others can find the wonder of you. 🙂 xox

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Okay, that does it. We have GOT to get together. I’ll buy you a cappuccino or a pumpkin spice drink of choice…or whatever you like. Anytime next week–you name the time. If we don’t do it soon, Christmas will take over our lives. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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