Action Items from Blogging While Brown 2014

The Blogging While Brown conference, now in its 7th year, is a great place for bloggers of color to convene, learn, and have fun.  I attended for the second time, and while it was fun to return home to the New York area, I wanted to leave with some action items to implement.  I'm going to make the list public so that I can be held accountable - feel free to call me out!

  1. Develop a writing schedule
    • Currently aim for weekly content, but I'd to do something more concrete.  I'm going to start writing 30 min on Mon, Wed, and Fri  - even if that means only one blog post goes out a week. The end goal is to have 2-3 posts a week.
  2. Investigate STEM freelancing opportunities
    • Begin pitching article ideas to publications that I'm already reading.  Even if I'm rejected several times, I'll still gain valuable pitch writing skills.
  3. Provide STEM services for local businesses
    • Starting with the local Chamber of Commerce, I'm going to create a list of small businesses that may benefit from someone with a STEM background.  Eventually I'm going to increase the range from Milwaukee to Chicago
  4. Increase Science / Math tutoring opportunities
    • Get list of existing tutoring opportunities in libraries, churches, community centers, etc that fit the hours of 6-8 on weekdays or anytime on the weekends.
    • Consider starting my own tutoring service
  5. Speak at a conference
    • Create a speaker link on the site, which will borrow content from the Press section. The section will include a list of topics I can speak on, and video / photography of me speaking.
    • After the section is created, I can refer to it when apply to science related conferences for speaking.



Send Your Clones to Conferences Far and Wide

Clone troops B&W

During the weekend of June 21st, two conferences occurred - Blogging While Brown in Harlem, NY and Netroots Nation in San Jose, CA. These are both conferences that cover issues that I am interested in, and I wish I could clone myself and go to both!

 I selected Blogging While Brown, but unfortunately I had to cancel due to a business obligation.  So here I was - two conferences going on and I wasn't able to go to either.  I was pretty pissed. The only solution was to use Twitter to follow the conference and essentially clone myself so that I could be in three places at the same time.

Technology to the rescue!  I used Tweetdeck  to watch both hashtags from the conference (#BWBNYC and #NN13). I also made sure to set up a separate filter for each hashtag and the word "question". This enabled me to watch for questions that people asked (so I could ask follow up questions), as well as find when questions were being thrown out to Twitter community to answer.  

I was able to interact with conference attendees so often that some people actually thought I was at the conference! My little Shareef clones attended the conferences and people actually mistook them for me! Check out the following tweets.

Good luck with cloning yourself and attending conferences from afar!