Last Saturday I attended a blogging event – The Secluded Tea Party Blog Fest – brilliantly hosted by the talented Miss Sue Flay at a Golf and Country Club in the Cambridgeshire countryside.
Never heard of The Secluded Tea Party? Here is some background information before I talk about the day.
Sue’s quirky tea parties are always very creative occasions with a theme attached to them. Held in the Cambridgeshire countryside, the venue is kept a secret until a few days before the event when guests are emailed further details of the event.
I have attended a few of Sue’s tea parties, my first post in this blog was about the Easter themed tea party I attended in April this year. If you are curious to find out more about that event follow the link below to my first post or look for the first post under the Food and Drink Category.
Sue’s tea parties have proved to be very popular and have gone from strength to strength with Sue’s ideas becoming more creative, exciting and challenging her organisational skills!
A link to Sue’s blog can be found at the end of this post, you will be able to find lots of interesting foodie posts and you can also find out more about Sue’s tea parties. It is well worth a read.
The blogfest is the first event of its kind for Sue, who was very nervous at the beginning. However, it was a brilliantly organised event and proved to be a success.
The following is my account of the day…
The day of the event turned out to be a perfect Autumn picture with a clear blue sky and a chill in the air. A very inviting golf course (not that I play golf!) and a peaceful countryside atmosphere greeted me as I arrived at the venue.
The event was held in a conference room decorated for the occasion. Each table was given the name of one of Sue’s favourite Cambridgeshire tea rooms, whilst place names were laid out for guests.
Cake stands filled with breakfast muffins were placed on tables and were very welcome additions. A selection of Sue’s amazing cakes were also enjoyed during a break, I can highly recommend her carrot cake and scones (see pic!)
As twenty eight eager bloggers, and would be bloggers, filled the room there was an air of anticipation and a friendly atmosphere. It was lovely to be surrounded by creative women with an eclectic mix of blogging interests and proved to be inspiring from the beginning.
Sue had invited four guest speakers to share their blogging and social networking experiences, offer advice and answer our questions.
The speakers were;
Wired2Create’s Mel Hollidge on ‘The Power of Marketing Through Social Media’. Mel gave some excellent advice about promoting our blogs/websites and the tools that are available to monitor traffic to them.
BBC Radio/TV Presenter/Author Liz Fraser who also blogs and spoke on the importance of ‘Individuality’ in writing. Liz spoke about ‘voice’ and ‘honesty’. She also reminded us that we do have busy lives and that blogging isn’t everything! Taking a break from it is ok!
ReeRee Rockette of Rockalily Lipsticks spoke about ‘How my blog changed my life’. ReeRee told us how her blog became so popular it allowed to her quit her job, by finding her niche whilst blogging she was able to start her own business and change her life.
Sian Townsend of JamJar PR spoke on ‘How to Write a Good Review’. Sian is a trained journalist so was able to offer advice from things she has learnt through her career, including what makes a good or bad review.
Lots of note taking, questions, live tweeting and cake eating ensued as the guests were inspired by the speakers, also taking full advantage of a break to network and share ideas and experiences between themselves.
The advice and experiences of the other bloggers was enormously helpful. I will be using the advice and inspiration I gained from the day to make this blog the best it can be. It was also a great way to meet new people, share experiences and talk to fellow bloggers.
Sue is planning a second blog fest in 2012, I can’t wait to find out what she has in store for us!
Here is some links to our speakers;