“I know this sounds crazy, but I really feel like The Blogcademy is going to be a massive game-changer for all three of us”, Gala said to Shauna & me the morning after the workshop, “and I really hate that phrase…”
But you know what, I think the girl might be onto something.
A heady mix of nerves, anticipation and excitement seeped through my trip to New York this month. Lisa & I had a few other things planned, but we knew our visit was concluding with the biggie. Organising this event was a labour of love and a project of passion – squillions of emails flew back and forth over the course of just a couple of short months while Gala, Shauna & I planned every last detail thousands of miles apart from each other.
A intensive weekend-long and strategy-based blogging workshop was something all three of us had dreamt about doing individually, but it was only when we realised we could do it together that the pieces of the puzzle started falling into place. We all have very different areas of interest and expertise surrounding the subject, and when we sat down and assessed what each of us could bring to an event like this it all just seemed to make sense.
“It was hands down one of the best things I’ve done to move my ideas forward in a really long time. The BEST. I think I may have a choir of mojo about to sing hallelujah. It got me thinking about how we get our mojos to sing…” Maree Forbes
I’m currently lying in bed in my East Village apartment (well, I wish it was mine!) with Nubby the day after the first ever Blogcademy. It’s 7am and we’re both bolt upright excitedly gabbing about the events of the past 48 hours. It was a weekend of magical, unexpected, positivity and excitable exhilaration. Loving, learning and inspiring each other – all in our own imitable fashion. I feel mentally exhausted and my feet hurt like hell but it’s oh such a good feeling. Our 30 attendees were just what we hoped & prayed for and more, and I honestly feel we’ve all made some new BFFs for life.
Isn’t it amazing when a plan comes together? In the weeks running up to today’s announcement I’ve been literally seconds away from tweeting my excitement and giving the whole game away. In fact anyone that knows me ‘in real life’ will be well aware about how rubbish I am at keeping secrets. Like… literally terrible. I actually don’t know why anyone would ever tell me anything because I’m the first person to accidentally say “OMG you will never guess what I just heard…”
Which is why it has been utter torture for me not to scream this from the rooftops I’M GOING TO NEW YORK AND DOING A TWO DAY BLOGGING WORKSHOP WITH GALA & NUBBY!!!!
Phew… that felt goooooooood. You’ll have to excuse me for being so damn uncool about it all…
Ever since launching the School of Rock blogging workshops I’ve been inundated with people asking if we might take it over the pond (American readers I love ya!) So when I was in NYC in May I spent many an evening chatting over the idea with Ms Darling. We started wondering if we could do something even bigger and better than School of Rock – to combine our years of blogging experience to create a truly one-stop blogging (work)shop. And Nubby… hell, Nubby is epically awesome with branding and graphic design (she designed my site and she created the Rock n Roll magazine in it’s entirety!) as well as being the perfect example of someone who successfully uses her blog to support her design business.
And so the idea was formed and The Blogcademy was born. We were to pull together a two day masterclass for bloggers, right in the heart of the most exciting city in the world. Covering anything and everything you could possibly want to know about blogging, branding and running your own business, this will be a weekend to remember. We promise truckloads of learning, laughing, photo ops, sugary treats and homework assignments you’ll actually want to complete. As Blogcademy headmistresses we promise to be unshakably honest, to give away all our secrets and to be full of sparkle at all times.
I’m obsessed with this shoot, set up by Becky Hoh-Hale to promote her new breed of vintage wedding fair, A Most Curious Party. If you’ve been reading Rock n Roll Bride for a while you might recognise that name – I’ve been lucky enough to feature two of their shoots to promote previous events (as well as Rebecca’s own gorgeous wedding).
Alongside the amazing Joanna Millington Photography and some of the other suppliers exhibiting at the shows, Becky wanted to showcase a unique twist on the vintage wedding trend – it’s not all tea length 50s dresses and mismatched crockery here! “We had big plans for this shoot”, explained Becky. “Originally we wanted to shoot in the Norfolk Woods, where much of the flat landscape looks like the set of Spike Jones’s ‘Where the Wild Things Are’ but on the day we were strewn with drizzle, which eventually turned into full blown rain, which eventually turned into hail. So onto plan B!”
“Luckily our make up artist Nova of Milk & Honey, had put on an amazing night market event the month before, at a beautifully crumbling down and disused 18th century building close by, where the layers of wallpaper were in just the right state of shabby. If a battered, period house had been plan A you know that we would have spent years looking for this exact setting, so when adjusting our mindset from Max and his Wild Things to something more akin to Wedding Creatures in the Attic, we realised how lucky we were to have it.”
So this is an unusual turn of events! On Monday we launched the latest School of Rock event in Brighton. Within 2 minutes 2 spaces had sold… within 5 minutes 6 spaces had sold… within 11 minutes 9 spaces had sold… within an hour and 45 minutes we were sold out! HOLY CRAP YOU GUYS.
I’ve since had a huge number of people messaging and emailing me to ask if they could pleeease be put on a reserve list in case anybody pulls out. In fact so many of you have asked that that we’ve decided to take the illogical decision to host a second Brighton workshop the week after!
The drill will be as before. The event will be held at The Ginger Dog in Kemptown from 1.30-5.30pm on Friday 31st August. To read more about exactly what the course covers as well as to see more photos and a video from the last event, check out the previous blog post.
It’s a huge cliché but I really have been truely blown away by the response to my School of Rock blogging workshops so far. Each event has sold out quicker than the last, with the most recent one being off the market within 8 hours! You guys really do know how to flatter me.
I know I keep saying this too, but the last event, at Curradine Barns in the West Midlands has got to have been my favourite yet. The venue was stunning, the group that attended were awesome and we even got fed an amazing 3 course meal (all made in house by their head chef) afterwards! Triple win!
I still get ridiculously nervous before each event and I always worry about getting my words out in the right order. I’ve got a secret to share… when I was about to start talking at this last event my mind literally went blank. Like… there was nothing there. NADDA. Somehow I managed to assemble some thoughts and get stuck in though. I hope no one noticed (although I’ve kinda given the game away now huh?)
I couldn’t do it without Gareth by my side. Not only to answer the techy questions that I suck at answering, but to pick up the slack when I start to babble (it happens!) Plus he pulls funny faces which amuses us all…
I don’t half make some funny faces myself when I’m talking though do I?! Emma said it’s because I’m ‘super involved and passionate’ about what I’m saying… I think it’s more likely that I’m just an over-expressive doof.