As many of you know (Or at least those of you who read My Blogtastic Ireland Travel Plans) at end of September I had the unique opportunity to participate in Navigate Media Group’s Bloghouse Event In Ireland. A 4 day intensive blog training boot camp of sorts, where veteran bloggers would mentor and bestow their blogger wisdom to 10 lucky Newbie Bloggers (Mostly bloggers who had been blogging for less than a year),Oh and did I mention we got to stay in A CASTLE!!!!
Yes you heard me right we got to spend 4 days living in the amazing Bansha Castle, a 300-year-old castle situated in Ireland’s Tipperary area.
To be honest I was overwhelmed with a nervous surreal feeling when boarding the Irish ferry from Wales bound for Bloghouse and Ireland’s shore’s. It had only been a year since I entered the world of travel blogging. (I had my 1 year anniversary at the start of September) and while I have interacted with countless travel bloggers online. I had only ever met 1 or 2 beyond the realm of cyberspace, and now I was going to be living for 4 days in a castle with more than 14 bloggers. I was both incredibly excited and a little bit nervous.
But all of those nervous feelings quickly washed away when I met my fellow bloggers. Our journey started on a train from Dublin to Limerick Junction, However instead of just seeing Ireland’s beautiful countryside, We also got to see a local man parading up and down the aisle of the train wearing women’s underwear, whilst listening to the locals sing songs. Things were definitely off to an interesting start. Upon arriving at Limerick station our chariot (shuttle bus) awaited to take us to where we would all be staying for the next four days the beautiful Bansha Castle.
So what did we learn?
As I said earlier Bloghouse felt like a 4 day intensive boot camp. We learnt everything from, Writing, monetization, SEO (Search Engine Optimization), Photography, Pitching to sponsors, Social Media, Mailing lists and the list goes on. We even had presentations going on during our lunch break’s. By the end of the 4 days it felt like my brain was going to explode from the sheer wealth of all the new blogging information I had received.
But even though we were presented with a a huge amount of information, the personal and interactive way it was delivered made it a really fun experience. There was also site reviews and talk’s on finding your niche, which were a lot more personal, and targeted at what each blogger could do to take their blog to the next level. By the end of the four days I had learnt 100x more than I had in a year of blogging and working things out on my own. They really did a great job of packing in a lot of content into the 4 days.
And then there was what really made Bloghouse special, the people.
from the moment I walked into Bloghouse and started talking with other bloggers it felt like I had finally found my tribe. Everyone had their own unique stories and niches for their site, and although we all came from different countries and working background. we all shared the same passion for travel and wanted to share that with our readers.
The amount of passion and commitment everyone had was really contagious. From the veteran bloggers who were our teachers, who had all overcome many of the same hurdles we were now facing. Their wisdom,advice and on going support has been invaluable. Thank you for seeing the potential in me and helping me bring it to the surface.
- Ayngelina from Bacon is Magic
- Dalene and Pete from Hecktic Travels
- Michael from Go, See, Write
- Craig of Indie Travel Podcast and Linda who was there giving us support.
And of course there are my 10 fellow bloghouse attendee’s.
Julika Epp – Sateless Suitcase
Megan Belt – A Passport Affair
Brendon Vince – Nerd Travels
Murissa Shalapata – The Wanderfull Traveler
Jaclynn Seah – The Occasional Traveller
Béatrice Bernard-Poulin – BeatriceBP.com
Lance Longwell – Travel Addicts
Jo Fitzsimons – Indiana Jo
Helen Davies – Helen in Wonderlust
Andrew Wahba The Wandering Wahba
I had such a phenomenal time with all of you, It was so great to meet so many talented fellow bloggers, All with different niches sharing that same passion for travel, All trying to take their blogs to the next level. Every conversation I had with each of you filled me with inspiration and motivation to push forward. I look forward to following all of your personal journeys and cant wait to read of your future success’s.
But what really made Bloghouse a life changing experience?
It was the atmosphere, The sense of community, The energy that was created by having so many passionate, driven like minded people living under one roof. At any given moment Whether it be during class time or in the evenings in our spare time there were people talking. working, sharing idea’s, networking and most importantly inspiring, and that for me is what made bloghouse a life changing experience. It’s that feeling of community that sense of belonging.
– the late night conversations that would go into the early hours of the morning when we knew we should have been sleeping.
– The Expeditions through the castle, moving every book in search of hidden doors.
– The time pondering if that door in the ceiling in one of the room’s was going to open in the middle of the night and unleash some kind of horror on the person who was sleeping in there. (It didn’t haha)
– Getting down and dirty during Pete and Michael’s photography class.
– Or Sitting back at the local bar Nellie’s and sharing a couple of pints, while trying to set up the ultimate vine video.
One of these day’s I’m going to go back and attempt to get a non blurry shot of blurry Nellie 😀
And of course lastly and more importantly all the amazing bloggers that came together for this event. Whether it was to teach and share your invaluable experiences and wisdom, or as a participant to share your motivation and dreams for the future. I really do feel so privileged to be part of this amazing travel blogging community with you and every travel blogger out there. I can’t wait to see what amazing adventures you all get up, and to see all of your dream’s and goals become a reality.
As for me and NerdTravels.com, After my time in Bloghouse I now have realized what direction I not only want to take my blog but my career as well. You can bet there are some some really exciting changes and projects coming up in the month’s ahead as a direct result of Bloghouse. Without giving to much away lets just say video is going to be playing a lot bigger role in the way I tell my story.
If you are interested in being part of the next bloghouse you should sign up to Navigate Media Group’s newsletter. It could just change your life.