That Was 2012: Stepping Out

One thing that seemed to occur 2012 was a certain number of Bloggers ‘stepping out’. In our group discussion at the Beer Bloggers Conference in May, I made a point that, in order to truly connect outside of your regular sphere, you do have to step outside it – and speak to people not necessarily living in ‘The Beer World’.

Now, this isn’t for everyone. Some bloggers simply want to share ruminations and connect with the like-minded. I’m not particularly enamoured by public speaking to be honest (despite blogging, I’m actually fairly shy and – confession time – possess a slight stammer) – but if you want to try and get people to buy and enjoy beer, then surely you have to get out there, right?

It’s not just me: Boak and Bailey spoke at Eden this year, and loved every minute of it by the sounds of it. Baron Orm has a great relationship with Source Deli and even Tandleman spoke at IMBC alongside professionals – James Watt, Zak Avery and Toby McKenzie of RedWillow – and, of course, we had plenty of turns on the mic from Bloggers such as Mark at the EBBC itself. Rick Furzer collaborated with Create Restaurant and another handful of local bloggers in Leeds and hosted an Open It! meal (and subsequent piss-up!). Brilliant. I was also really pleased to see that veteran blogger, magpie and all-round nice guy Andy Mogg reached the final of the Sharp’s Cook-Off final with an excellent display in Nathan Outlaw’s kitchen.

Myself, I carried on from late 2011 and hosted some Beer and Food nights at Dough Bistro and BeerRitz this year, which are always immense fun, and getting positive feedback from people as well as helping the industry in my small way is incredibly rewarding. The point is, I guess – if you think you have something to offer – a way with words, a way to get people talking, then do. It can be scary. But afterwards, you’ll be surprised at the good you can do.

This post is aimed squarely at Bloggers. Pro writers and journalists have to get involved; they have publishers to please and livings to make. But, despite the term ‘Blogger’ still seemingly somewhat of a dirty word in certain circles, I really think we can still offer something to someone.

Stepping out from behind the screen is a big deal, and I applaud all of you who do so.

About leighgoodstuff

Blog: I'm Leigh Linley; born and bred in Leeds, and writing about it since 2005. TGS exists solely to highlight the great beers that are out there; brewed with passion by Craft Brewers around the World. I also edit the 'Tavern Tales' section of Culture Vulture, which looks at Pubs and Pub Life rather than the beer in the glass.

Posted on 22/10/2012, in Uncategorized and tagged . Bookmark the permalink. 15 Comments.

  1. Hear hear! I’ve done a couple of talky things this year and it can be very rewarding.

  2. It’s the next level, alongside writing for publication in the grown-up media. More scary, though. As you say, kudos to those of us who have the balls to come out from behind the keyboard…

  3. We certainly did enjoy it. (We got paid, though, as it was a for-profit food festival…)

  4. “Even Tandleman spoke” etc. Cheers. I have of course been doing this kind of thing for years off and on. I have conducted tastings at the Great British Beer Festival on at least six occasions, all of which were paid for by clients, though I as a volunteer,got nowt and again at NWAF and I’ll be doing so again next year. These are paid gigs too, but nothing comes my way. I regularly speak to groups, such as licensees, PubWatch etc. about real beer as CAMRA Chairman.

    IMBC was probably my first stage appearance as a blogger rather than beer “expert” though.

    I’m available for weddings, funerals etc at a very modest cost.

  5. Cheers! I think that calls for a twissup in the new year….

  6. Did someone say Twissup?

    It’s a very interesting point Leigh, the idea of moving from behind the keyboard and engaging with good folks to share the love. I really think that enthusiasm and a passion for the subject counts for a huge amount and people do find it contagious. Even more so in person.

    I have some plans afoot for a few London events and am gutted I missed IMBC. I am planning on contacting Porter Street crew re next year & see whether can do some sort of food & beer event. You up for it?

  7. Something I’m really pushing myself to do. I’ve had the odd small success at the local pub, plus hosted three or four bottle tasting nights at my place, but that’s in the comfort zone, watch this space.

    Great work Leigh by you and everyone else listed. Cheers

  8. A well written piece and thank you for the mention – think it’s time we organised another ‘meet the brewer’ night at Source…

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