My Experience at Creative Allance 12

This is easily my ninth attempt at a writing a post about my experience at Creative Alliance 12. I’ve just decided to write for 10 minutes, spell check and post.  I can’t process it without writing it, but I’m still trying to find the right words. You know what they say, ninth time’s a charm.

Creative Alliance 12 may have been a life changing experience for me. Don’t know yet. Too soon to tell. I’ll have to see if I act on any of the amazing advice and information I was given.  I know for sure that it was a game changer. My perspective on blogging has shifted and I think I might love it, love blogging again AND the new perspective. I am chock full of love.

I’ve had a few people ask me what exactly it was and why people act like it is so special. The answer to that is simple and complex (handy!). I mean, people act like it is special because it is special. I’ve never been to a blogging event where people are so open. It’s really refreshing. It seems like from the outset, everyone is coming from a place of welcome. It is a small gathering (45 people or so) where the intent was to share knowledge and the experience and not climb to the next level of blogging over the backs of their friends.

2012 has been a rough year to say the least. It started out horribly and the spring was one miserable thing after another and then BlogHer was meh. Needless to say, I was over blogging. The stars aligned for me to grab a last minute spot at CA 12 and something shifted. I felt it the second I sent the email saying I could attend. There was that thrill. I looked forward to attending. Nervous sure, but excited.

Dinner the first night was good. I chatted. I don’t think anyone thought I was a freak. Weirdly outdoor seating in the near dark was comforting and made chatting a little easier. The next morning I sat listening to the introductions of the amazing company I was in and I had a small realization – I was accepted. No one care that they hadn’t heard of me or my blog. No one looked over my shoulder to see if there was someone walking by that they just couldn’t miss. No one walked away from me mid-sentence to go talk to someone else.

Then we broke in to small groups and suddenly there I was. Telling my story and crying. With complete strangers. That is something quite unlike me. And therein lies the beauty of Creative Alliance. There are discussions, not sessions. No conference rooms, but groups gathered outside in the sun or the shade on orange chairs. The setting is beautiful and inspiring. Knowledge is shared freely, openly and willingly. There are tears, though. And hopes and dreams. It’s amazing.

Renewed. Refreshed. Recharged.

During that first small group someone said to me, you know, you don’t have to blog. When she said, I realized that yes, yes I do. So, here I am. Still.

 

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17 Responses to “My Experience at Creative Allance 12”

  1. I’m so glad to hear this…. the way you summed it up blogher is literally exactly how I felt. I am really glad that you got an experience that was meaningful, and can’t wait to see what’s in store coming up!

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  2. Suebob says:

    Great post – you said a lot in 10 minutes. It was really good to meet you, and I hope we meet up again.

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  3. Kelly Tirman says:

    It was great getting to meet you this past weekend. I <3 that knowledge was shared freely, openly and willingly. I think that was what made CA12 so special – it set the tone for real connections to happen.

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  4. Oh my goodness I LOVE this.

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  5. Ellie says:

    This is beautiful, Amy – you captured this uncapturable (totally just made up a word) thing so well.

    My only wish is that I had had more time to get to know you in person – you didn’t say too much but when you talked you were funny, poignant, honest and helpful. I feel like this is a beginning, not an end, and that I have plenty of time to get to know you better.

    I’m so very glad you came.

    -xo

    -Ellie

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  6. Florinda says:

    “It may have been a life changing experience. Don’t know yet.” I love that. I kind of feel the same way, and one thing I learned from the weekend is that life changes don’t need to be rushed. Hope to see you again before too long!

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  7. Beautifully said. As a last-minute-attendee, I also appreciated feeling welcomed.

    I’m a small blogger who hasn’t been so clear why exactly I blog. No, that’s not true. I know why I blog. What I don’t really know is why I attend conferences. But I’m so glad that I didn’t miss this one.

    You were delightful in person and I’m glad i got to meet you, Any. I’m so glad you and I both made it in under the wire. I feel so blessed that I got to meet you.

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  8. It is tough to quantify, isn’t it? I am so glad you got that ticket. It was so nice meeting you!

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  9. karen duggan says:

    This may be the best description of our gathering that I have seen. It rings so true for me. I’m so happy I got to share a couple of car rides and a meal or two with you!!!

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  10. Tannis says:

    This sounds fantastic. Like a wonderful retreat. I’m glad you were able to go.

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  11. Suzanne says:

    I’m so glad you got to go. I am so happy for you it far outstrips my jealousy, and that’s saying a lot.

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  12. Jane Gassner says:

    This is what you come up with in 10 minutes of free-writing? Brilliant, eloquent, and RIGHT ON THE MONEY! You said what the rest of us have not been able to articulate. I’m so glad you got that ticket!

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    Amy Reply:

    I think it being 10 minutes of free writing AND the 9th draft helped…

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  13. jessica says:

    Yes, ninth time IS a charm. xoxoxoxo

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  14. You did a wonderful job on this post…LOVE the honesty!! So I take it Blogher is not worth going to? I have never attended a blog conference…and would appreciate not having my time wasted again♥
    Laurie

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