Monday, March 22, 2010 - Australian food bloggers conference

It was an honour to be the first cab off the rank yesterday at the inaugural Australian Food Bloggers Conference. Many of us mentioned a wonderful bonus from blogging is being a member of an awesome community and the day (and night!) certainly validated that.

I’ll update other parts of my discussion later – but first the bit I skipped over due to lack of time.

The Amateur Gourmet posted Ten Rules for Food Blogging last month. It’s been a great talking point, including a discussion over at Lisa Dempster. Here’s my version:

The Food Nazi's food blogging top 10 tips

1. Focus on what you are passionate about? What type of a food worshipper are you – cooking, preserves, baking, eating out, in search of the best coffee, working your way through a massive cookbook collection or are you the leftovers queen? You tend to write best about what you are most passionate about.

2. Take photos, preferably without a flash. But in reality, I think a post without a photo is better than every post with a very bad photo! Resist uploading lots of fullsize, downloading-guzzling photographs.
At Eat.Drink.Blog there were many varying opions on this

3. Most blogs have a life of their own. Unless they are an over-engineered, PR-strategised assignment – blogs tend to evolve in directions that we don’t always anticipate. Just go with the flow, you can always rename or subtitle your blog later.

4. Read other food blogs, comment when a post inspires you. But resist blanket commenting on every blog just for the sake of it. One well thought comment or hearty support is better than 5 mediocre, nothing comments. Show that you’ve actually thought about what the blogger is saying/doing.

5. Update frequently – yes. And while three times a week is a good aim, quality tends to win over quantity. Three mundane posts about an average cup of coffee you drank in a café last week is more likely to cause a drop off in readers, than one well thought through post a week.

6. If you are busy, do a short post updating your readers with what’s going on and when you expect to get back on schedule. Share a little about your life but if your post is about food rather than parenting – a full update on the ins and outs of your family/dog/cat/job etc will probably turn off more readers than the few it snares.

7. Ask for help or feedback when appropriate. Don’t be afraid to post disasters, they tend to pull people out of the woodwork to comment. We can’t be perfect all the time and blogging about it is a great way to learn.

8. If you are new to blogging and want more readers get involved in blog events and even offer to host one if you have the time. (Is my blog burning? is a good source).

9. Get help with the nitty gritty of blogging when you need it. Food Blog S’cool have great advice on food pron photography through to dealing with spam.

10. Have fun. If blogging is your hobby not your job – to hell with the rules!

What are you're thoughts?

PS: Great to put faces to so many names. Hopefully we'll all put up information from our talks at the conference website, though it might take a little time for a few heads to clear first! Thanks to the wonderful organiser - Ed, Reem, April and Mellie who did a stellar job, Mistress Tammi who moderated the panels and kept us in line, The Essential Ingredient for providing a great venue, Daylesford & Hepburn Springs Mineral Water for keeping us hydrated, Der Raum for supplying the hangovers amazing herbal coctails (chamomile infused vermouth with dry ice - wow!) and the fantastic crew at St Ali who fed and watered us. Special thanks to the chef for providing so many enticing meat-free alternative courses.

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Blogger Cindy said...

Great to catch up with you again, AOF. :-)

Eat Drink Blog far exceeded my expectations - well done to everyone who pitched in!

11:45 am  
Blogger Lisa (bakebikeblog) said...

It sure was a fun event! Thanks for posting those tips :)

2:54 pm  
Anonymous Janet(Pantry Bites) said...

Thanks for a great summary. Will take it all to heart.

4:28 pm  
Blogger Another Outspoken Female said...

Janet - just remember #10 is the most important :)

Lisa and Cindy - wasn't it grand. And yes we got tofu! And herbal cocktails. All round winner...except I'm not feeling at all productive today for some strange reason .

4:36 pm  
Anonymous Elizabeth said...

Hi, this really hasnothing to do with your post - stumbled in here via Pea Soup, like your blog - by any chance do you know what the heck finger limes are for? There was a ig basket of them at the Prahran Market last week, I was dying to buy some but...

9:12 pm  
Blogger Another Outspoken Female said...

Welcome Elizabeth. I first encountered these delights a few years ago. They have such an explosion of citrusy flavour. Muddled with copious amounts of alcohol is one option. If that's not your thing, it makes amazing marmalade (though I've not done it myself).

Anyone else got some finger lime advice to add?

9:27 pm  
Blogger Zoe said...

I like them sprinkled over grilled figs with yoghurt/goat cheese/whatever's to hand

1:24 pm  
Blogger Simon Food Favourites said...

love your list. no. 5 is a good one but all good. it's great to be reminded of the basics and also to have fun. thanks for sharing :-)

9:33 pm  
Blogger Another Outspoken Female said...

Gosh Zoe, I want grilled figs and finger limes right now dammit! Hope you made it home safely to the loving embrace of your (very quiet and well behaved) family.

Thanks Simon. Will have more from my discussion at the conference...soon. I just can't generate 3 posts a week as the originator of the blogging rules suggests. Who can live with that kind of pressure when we still have a day job?

There should be more info about presentations on the website after the panelists have had a darn good detox :)

9:43 pm  
Blogger claire said...

Lovely to see you again on Sunday, Gill!

Oh, and fingerlimes squeezed on fresh oysters are divine, if you're an oysterphile. :)

12:55 am  
Blogger Maddy at Ravenous Melbourne said...

Thanks for re-posting the blogging rules, it's a great list of pointss to keep in mind.

*sigh* I wish I was back at Eat.Drink.Blog.!! I'm so excited to see what next year will hold, if the first even could be that good.

9:53 am  
Anonymous Lisa said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

6:14 pm  
Blogger neil said...

Great to finally meet you. Wasn't the whole thing a blast. Everyone including you worked so hard to make it the success it was.

9:13 pm  
Blogger Johanna GGG said...

lovely to see you at eat drink blog and loved your attitude in the talk - fun is definitely a good reason for blogging - yes #10 strikes a chord with me - but i love all your top ten - nice and relaxed and open to diversity as blogging should be

and just checked is my blog burning from your blog and it worked - have had trouble accessing it lately - just been getting a log in screen - must check my links

12:13 am  
Blogger Another Outspoken Female said...

Sorry L - I had to delete your comment, my next post will explain why.
Maddy - the rest of a week has been a come down. We've set the bar rather high for any further conferences!
Neil - it was a pleasure meeting you.
Johanna - great to see you again, glad you liked my talk. Hope to get the rest of it up today.

8:58 am  
Blogger Thermomixer said...

Congratulations and thanks for posting your list of rules. As a very part-time blogger it is great to have "professionals' to lead the way.

Hope that there are many more such events.

5:33 pm  
Anonymous said...

Australian food bloggers conference! That's truly awesome. Hos was it? I haven't heard about such events for blogger before but I am sure the event was great. On this occasion, did they opened a new blog where I could get some more information about the event such as pictures.

3:46 pm  
Blogger Another Outspoken Female said...

Thermomixer - I aint no pro! There is a movement towards "being a full-time blogger" but I have no delusions of jumping on that bandwagon (I kinda like my day job).

BJ - am sure you are aware that photos on blogs are subject to copyright laws.

4:26 pm  
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