The Annual PodCamp Dilemma

Monday Update: As much as I feel the change of focus and session topics will benefit me, I will have to wait until next year to attend PodCamp. Something else came up that makes it pretty much impossible for me to go. The scales tipped in favor of the kids, and I’m cool with that. I hope that PodCamp moves back to September. The move to October (because of a venue conflict) had me — obviously — feeling like I was shoehorning it in.

Also, my mom’s comment made me LOL. Thanks, Mom, mostly for calling me a young person.

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This year’s PodCamp Pittsburgh (#pcpgh7) is next weekend.

PodCamp is always a dilemma for me. I’ve been to two of them, and they are super enjoyable and educational. I meet new people (or meet people IRL for the first time). Last year, I even presented, and it was awesome.

PodCamp is moving from a personal-type event toward a business/professional type event this year (the topics, I should say). Sessions are about social media marketing, blogging for business, social media for non-profits, entrepreneur-ship (and I would like you to know I spelled ‘entrepreneur’ right on the first try, BOOM), and so on.

And I would desperately like to go. I am having a real “what do I want to be when I grow up” phase in my life right now, and social media and social media marketing are part of that. (Incidentally, this has been going on since I attended my first PodCamp in 2009.)

I registered (General Rockstar) about a week ago. I’ve been dithering ever since and here’s why:

1. Logistics, logistics, logistics. I can’t get a babysitter for all day Saturday. I could probably go to the afternoon sessions, and maybe a couple on Sunday.

2. Sunday would require bribing my husband substantially. It is his only day off every week, and for me to decamp to what he views as a social event (leaving him with the three children) verges on traitorous.

3. I see PodCamp as an immersive event, and I just can’t be immersive this year. So is it worth it to go? I probably can’t network much. I probably can’t stay to socialize after the sessions are over. (Okay, maybe one drink.)

4. Since it’s changing focus, I may not know that many people going this year. I know more personal bloggers than professional social media marketing people. That’s neither a pro nor con, but see #3. (And I’m shy.)

5. All the other stuff going on in my life right now. I am planning two birthday events (Flora’s classroom party, and the kids’ party — I’m doing ONE family party for all three children); the holidays are fast approaching; THE BATHROOM IS BEING REMODELED, which if you can’t tell from me yelling, is a big huge deal/nightmare; three kids to manage.

What is pulling at me to attend at all is the fact that I want to move toward being a professional in social media. (Gawd, does that sound naive or pretentious? I can’t decide.) And I don’t mean I want to be a Justin Kownacki or Chris Brogan. I would kind of enjoy, however, being Dana Sheehan. (I don’t know if Dana knows that, or if she even remembers meeting me.)

So. Should I go, even though I can probably only do about 5 hours/sesssions total? I really need to decide this weekend. It’s a free event, technically speaking, but it still costs me a lot (energy, points with Dan, time, time with my children). I’m still trying to figure out if it’s worth it.

What say you?

Return to PodCamp Pittsburgh

I know I mentioned this before: I am going to PodCamp Pittsburgh this year. It will be my second PodCamp.

And, er, I’m doing three sessions in a row on Saturday.

Technically, I’m only doing one session solo. The other two sessions are panel discussions with some awesome people: @michaeldpound, @lisaj77, @funkydung, @techburgh, and @askthedivad. We had a meeting last night at my house to hammer out a few more details.

And I’m quite excited. Also, I think Mike has a picture of me perched on a little blue chair looking quite excited. (Ahem. Cough it up.) I promise not to go on (too much more), but PodCamp is one of the reasons I am waking up at 3 a.m. even when a kid is not. I have a lot to do. (Another reason is my sister’s wedding. I have a lot to do for that, too. It’s all good.)

Looking over the schedule, I wish I could go to every single session. I’m especially interested in the podcasting sessions, because that is something my husband would like to incorporate into his business. I’ll have to watch the videos later I suppose. Or make Dan come with me.

Side note: Because of his profession, being present on Twitter and Facebook would be… tricky to say the least. He is on LinkedIn, and at this point we feel that’s most appropriate.

Back on point: If you are interested in any or all of the following, you really should come to PodCamp: Pittsburgh social media, SEO, podcasting, blogging, new media, journalism on the Web, talking to people, listening to people, social media and journalism, social media and non-profits, and, er, #craftbeer.

Did I miss anything?

Are you going? You should go!