Tag Archives: published

Britmums Live The Highlights

26 Jun

OK, it’s fair to say that I have banged on about it a fair bit “Britmums Live” and why I was pretty dam excited to be attending.

Enough already I hear you scream.

But it’s done now! I attended and got high on the natural buzz of everything blogging, So… I guess it would be just plain rude of me if I didn’t tell you how it went!

Two entire days of workshops, inspiring talks, healthy debates, mingling, tea and a generous servings of cake (not forgetting the odd glass of wine and an awards party) is a lot to get through! So… As not to overload you, I’ll break this down into more manageable portions as to provide you with the highlights.

So here are my top 20… Enjoy!

Friday…

1) Arriving at 4.30 pm midway through a tea break. A cup of coffee and a slice of moist cake was just what this girl needed after the commute (god I loath the underground, though don’t tell the transport obsessed son I just said that)!

2) My first workshop of the weekend “The bloggers studio: The path to getting published, with bloggers who have done it” Having already started writing a book (see last post) this for me was need to know information. All speakers provided us listeners with some fantastic advice, especially “Emily Carlise” (More than just a mum) which meant that I left smiling.

3) I found that this year there was a much larger network of parent bloggers who’s main focus was on that of SEN, Autism, Aspergers and Disability. This meant that I finally got to meet some of the bloggers behind some of my favourite blogs. Tania from Special Needs Jungle has been a lady I’ve wanted to meet for some time. Finally getting to have a good old chin wag over a couple of glasses of wine was brilliant (Yes, we talked about everything from SEN provision to our boys unique and wonderful little ways).

4) The BIB Awards ceremony, Oh yes, did I forget to mention that an awards bash was merging into the agenda? OK, forget I did not but who can blame me, especially when this very blog was a finalist in the category Inspire! Ok, sadly I didn’t claim the title, but at least I lost out to the lovely talented “Mummy Whisper” Seriously it is impossible to hold any kind of blogger resentment, Lisa is just to bloody nice!

5) The fact that Special Needs Jungle did it for us SEN parents by bagging the Change Award! My fellow SEN blogger, activist, Aspergers Mum and now drinking buddy Tania was a little shocked by winning but still stepped on the stage and shared an important message with the 500+ bloggers, “Please do something to help looked after children in care as many of these children are not lucky to have dedicated parents” Please read and share her latest post.

6) The waiters at the BIBs party… I say no more!

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7) The after party drinks with some lovely bloggers.

Saturday…

8) Sarah Brown (wife to ex PM Gordon Brown and founder/president of Piggy Bank Kids) opening key note “Finding your Voice”

9) The Discussions Den, “Blogging for the greater good” A real inspiring discussion hosted by the lovely Kate (Kate on thin ice). Other speakers included Camila Batmanghelidjh (Kids Company) the inspiring Polly Gowers, (Give as you live) Claire from One and one of my favourite bloggers fellow finalist in both the Mads and the BIBs “Kylie Hodges” writer of the blog “Not even a bag of sugar” All gave some fantastic tips and advice on blogging for the greater good. This was by far one of my favourite discussions at Britmums Live.

10) The “Getting the most out of Google +” workshop as this meant that I now understand a little better on how to actually use it.

11) My one 2 one style consultancy with TK Maxx personal stylist “Claire” her suggestions surrounded me with doubt. However she knew her stuff and I left wanting to buy myself some peg trousers.

12) More Cake!

13) How great it was to never find myself stood awkwardly in a corner like a loner! Seriously, there was more than enough lovely bloggers to chat and mingle with.

14) Having a manicure at the Crocs stand! My nails looked lovely (keep an eye out for my lightweight crocs wellie review in August).

15) The display of fireworks right outside my hotel window.

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16) The talk by Cherry Healey… What a legend! A brilliant talk on how to combine social media, press and tv to help promote your blog and of course having the time to do so.

17) Acting like a bit of a tit in the Orlando photo booth.

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18) Chilling out at the Butlins stand with Laura (Tired mummy of two) it was lovely to catch up.

19) Getting to chat with some lovely bloggers and brands during the breaks including Romanian mum and Mum of three boys.

20) Lastly the amazing bloggers keynote. I cried and laughed out loud. I can’t recommend the following post enough!
Doing it all for Aleyna: Survivor
Down Side up: What to say when a baby is born with Down Syndrome
Dorky Mum: Twitter is like
Ministry of Mum: Seven days of special love

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Lastly I would like to thank the people at Orchard Toys for sponsoring my attendance. Of you haven’t checked them out then please do.

Writing a book on parenting a child with Aspergers

25 Jun

Yes, it’s official, the girl who declared in school that she would never acquire an interest or desire to write, has actually gone ahead and started writing her very own book!

It’s been on the agenda for sometime now and when asked the question of “Could you see yourself writing a book on parenting a child with Aspergers which has been inspired by your blog” during a press interview with the local paper as a result of winning a Mad blog award last September, I suddenly found myself saying “Yer, why the hell not”

Now, I don’t want to give to much away on here, after all I don’t want anyone running away with my story, but I will say its going to be me wearing my heart on my sleeve and telling it how it is.

It won’t be a “How To Book” and I hope it won’t be regarded as just another “Parenting a child with Aspergers book” my aim isn’t to make it a long winded story involving the ins and outs of symptoms and triggers, but more the affects ignorance can have and how it’s not only the child’s mental health that suffers as a result.

Having attended the brilliant Britmums Live parent bloggers confrence over the weekend (post on that to follow) I was able to obtain some tips and advice in the “The Path To Getting Published With Bloggers That Have Done It” workshop (which was most inspirational).

Yes, I had already started writing prior to the workshop so therefore had already obtain ideas on the style of writing I wanted for my book, the market I was aiming it at attracting and so forth, as for getting it published and how to go about doing so I had no idea!

In such a short space of time the speakers filled my brain with need to know info and It left me that bit more informed when it comes to the “Dos and Don’ts” when trying to get published.

As a result of this fabulous workshop I’ve since had plenty to occupy my mind! Yes, there’s the question of do I and should I be trying to get myself an agent? And if so where to start? I’ve also thought more about how I should approach publishers and agents to gain interest in my book and how this is done in a somewhat different way than that of the “Fiction book” There’s the important factor that actually I don’t have to have written my entire book to do so, a letter with my book proposal and showing how marketable I am is actually a more important factor at this stage! The fact that I have a good online presence is apparently a very good start and that of my blog is a massive added bonus. So basically showing I already have readership and I’m good at promoting myself, my blog and that of my interest, through social media (yes, twitter followers, Facebook page likes and blog subscribers) actually means I’m in a good position to go for it and start making it happen!

To think my writing could go beyond the reach of my blog is one exciting but also slightly nerve-wracking feeling!

If my story makes it onto paper which is encased within a front and back cover I’d have archived so much more than I first set out to! So much so, that thinking about it makes my tummy flip! Yer, what do you make of that misses disapproving head shaking English teacher?

My writing journey has been something of an incredible one. My first post almost 4 years ago, was my way of expressing the emotions I was experiencing during them very hard days pre-diagnosis. It was a release, despite it being there for the world to read it was for me! A way to let go of anger, unload my head and get through another day. Over time this changed, although the above reasons remained it also became my way of communicating with those who related to my story. I gained advice and as time passed by I began to realise that I had been providing comfort to others.

My writing helped me grow stronger, it helped me through hard times and importantly, it helped me find my voice. I wanted to help others, mainly I wanted to raise awareness for Autism and Aspergers (the later being the diagnosis my son had by now obtain).

The Internet is a powerful tool, but more powerful is that of ones voice, though not actually heard but read. My writing allows me to express myself much more than I would think possible if I was speaking out loud. My writing comes from my heart and I hope that will come through in my book.

So, there you have it! I’ve been inspired to get out there and make this really happen. Now I’ve just got to reach out and this post will be a start. So with that if anybody can help me, point me in the write direction, offer any tips, advice and so forth then I’m all ears!

Any agents out there… Well… HELLO do step forward, come on… Don’t be shy!

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