Word on the Street Festival 2006

I hit the Word on the Street Festival yesterday, which, as always, was full of great things to see, read, watch, photograph, and listen to.

And HORDES of people to elbow my way through. I always forget about that. Because the festival is only one day, the crowds are pretty insane. It’s near impossible to get through to any of the tables where they’re selling books at a discounted price (and they’re pretty much the bargain books you can get at Indigo or Chapters anyways). Still, the people were swarming around the tables… I wasn’t in the mood to fight the masses, so I skipped the whole “bargain book shopping” experience.

I did take in the Blogging Toronto panel discussion in the WordShop Marquee tent, led by Spacing Magazine’s Matt Blackett. The panel included Cheap Eats Alexa Clark, Photojunkie and friend Rannie Turingan, Unknown Toronto blogger Sarah Hood and BlogTO creator Tim Shore. The speakers answered questions like, “How did you get started in blogging? and “How has blogging changed your life?”, as well as how their sites have progressed, how their significant others have suffered or benefited and chocolate eclairs!

WOTS_2006_11
Rannie talked a lot about how Toronto bloggers have formed a community for themselves, and how blogging has widened his resources. Toronto bloggers do have a community, and I think a big reason for this is that Rannie created one for us! With websites like gtabloggers.com and toronto.photobloggers.org, not to mention his Flickr groups… and just the inspiration he’s given to aspiring photobloggers like myself… it really is a blogging phenomenon!

Sarah mentioned how once a person starts blogging, their perspective on things they experience, like events they attend, totally change. It goes from the usual, “I’m here, I’m seeing it, I’ll forget about it no time,” to “I’m here, I’m seeing it, now what can I photograph and write about, so that I can share my experience with everyone who reads my blog!” Kinda like how, before I went to school for photography, things seemed to look normal. Once I’d finished school- everything had a 24x36mm frame around it!

All in all, the discussion was very interesting, if a little bit too short. I think they started late, and ended a bit early, actually. I was disappointed that they didn’t talk more about blogging technologies, like RSS feeds, etc., but it was great to hear how the simple desire to share some of their experiences took on a life of its own- in the form of a BLOG.

Besides the blogging talk, I renewed my subscription to Canadian Geographic for half price. I wasn’t sure if I was going to, because I barely get enough time to sit down and read a magazine, but for $15? I couldn’t resist. If anything, the pictures are cool to look at!

I also got to see an old friend from college, Lori A. May, who just recently had a book published. She signed the copy I bought, and although we didn’t get to talk long, it was great to see how good she looked, and how successful she’s becoming. She’s a fantastic person, and I can’t wait to see how smart her detective novel, The Profiler, will be!

Lori A. May Signs My Book
See more of the pics I took at WOTS here:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/ravenswift/

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