Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Continuing to find my voice

For the first time in 5 years of attending PodcampAZ, I was a speaker. I have no idea what finally made me feel ready to do so. Back in February I spoke about Podcasting to a bunch of Girl Scouts. That was fun, and it went well. Then I spoke about Podcasting at Gangplank Jr. for their journalism program. Also went well. Maybe I figured, "hey, if I can speak to kids (who can be the harshest, most honest critics), then talking to adults should be cake!"

Or maybe I just need to up my meds.

At any rate, I did it. My topic was "How To Podcast Your Politics (and still have people listen)." It started out a little bumpy. I was nervous, even though there were only 12 people in the room and I knew 8 of them. I don't like being noticed. Seriously. I'd rather sit back and listen, ask questions now and then. I'm much better (and louder) behind a microphone. Plus, I kept looking at my outline, and stumbling around a bit. Felt a little like an idiot.

What changed was when I told everyone to jump in and contribute at any time. After that it became more of a discussion. The session led itself, and I just made sure to get through all SIX of my slides! It was a really good time, and I got some really positive feedback. I might just know a thing or two about something! I did record this session, so when I finally get through all the audio to post- I will.

I was also on a couple of panels this weekend. The Podcasting Panel, which was just general Q&A about the what, where, why's of Podcasting. It was ok. I'm very basic in my set up, and I think others make it more complex than it needs to be. They definitely make it more expensive than it needs to be. I just let the others do all the talking. I might skip participating in that one next year if they have it. Unless they really want me to contribute. I just wasn't feeling it this time, but that's cool.

The panel I *really* enjoyed being a part of was the Being Visible Online panel. I didn't think I qualified to be on it, honestly. I just do my thing and don't really worry about who's watching. Turns out I did have something to contribute, and it was an awesome discussion about what you can do, and probably shouldn't do to be visible online. I'm definitely an "oversharer"- every little thing and even a little bigger thing will make it into a tweet or a Facebook status update. It's just what I do. I don't worry about it being too much, I enjoy it. In the political world, it certainly has its drawbacks, and I talked about the time a troll decided to attack me personally after hearing my show. For the most part, if you have an awareness about what you do, you can still be very open AND secure online. The thing that is great about all of this is the control is in your hands, so you can decide if you want to follow what I'm doing, listen to what I'm saying, or read what I'm writing. And if you don't want to, hey that is just fine. We all use the series of tubes for different reasons, and some want to use it more, and some less.

My *SQUEEEE!* moment- Carey Pena of 3TV spoke this year, so I sat in on a bit of her talk. Afterwards, I saw her at the front door talking, and decided that I would go up and thank her for coming and speaking (as an organizer, that's the next post!). So I introduced myself, thanked her for speaking and said I was an organizer.

She's all "You mean 'tsdivadani?"
And I'm like "Uh... yeah...."
And she says "I follow you! I love reading your tweets!"
And I'm thinkin' "Girl I'm supposed to say that to YOU!"

It was my little fan girl moment, but also drove home the point of visibility. You're probably more visible than you think.

All of this speaking just makes me more visible too, not to mention more confident every time I do it. Which is good, since I want to start writing more and getting into more audio editing as a business sort of thing. I have a ton of hands-on experience now in many areas, why shouldn't I try and make a couple bucks here and there too?

I'm very grateful to those who have the faith in me I occasionally lack to do these things. This was a great weekend, and a great one to be a geek too!

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