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The first WordCamp Atlanta: a shivery but successful weekend

January 13, 2010

wordcamp atlanta wade kwon wcatlWhat a WordCamp!

I had a great time Friday and Saturday at the very first WordCamp Atlanta. The event took place on the Atlanta campus of the Savannah College of Art and Design, a self-contained location convenient to Midtown.

WordCamps are grassroots conferences that provide lots of sessions and hands-on help with WordPress, the software that runs this site and many, many others.

The lineup may not have featured any “big names,” but I was impressed by the level of information shared by the speakers. One attendee remarked that the blogging/content track seemed underserved, although the tech content was abundant.

(Certainly, I was in over my head, as usual, in several of the programming and development sessions.)

I was fortunate to be part of the content track, running an open session on “Smash Your Barriers to Blogging.” I decided I wanted to give attendees the opportunity to ask any question on any facet of WordPress, content management and blogging. It’s a bit of a risk, but I think it paid off well.

Vodpod videos no longer available.

Video: “Smash Your Barriers to Blogging,” an open forum led by Wade Kwon

Those who attended not only provided great questions on writing, planning, blogging, comment and community management, content and more — they also shared their own experiences and solutions. I just tried to stay out of the way!

In addition, I enjoyed meeting fellow speakers and attendees throughout the weekend. I love hearing about your ideas and goals for your sites. It’s my fave part of any conference I attend. I heard 400 people took part, which shows what a great community Atlanta has in place, along with the broad reach it has throughout the region.

My first conference of 2010 reminded me of posts I should write someday:

  • Tips for infrequent presenters.
  • Pace yourself: Make the most of your conference attendance.
  • The most important job at any conference? Timekeeper.

Don’t worry: I’ll blog forth in the coming days and weeks.

If you missed out, or even if you attended, check out these free resources:

My thanks to conference organizers Tessa Horehled and Brandon Sheats on their outstanding effort first time out. Your hard work has not gone unnoticed.

Mark your calendar: WordCamp Atlanta 2011 has already picked dates, Feb. 11-12.

Atlanta, thanks for a rich and rewarding (and freezing cold) weekend.

• • •

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Photo by Joe Hamm, @brohamm

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