An (in)Couraging Announcement — Let’s Meet in Real Life!

I have always loved to write, but I would never have started a blog if it had not been for the beautiful, inspiring ladies of (in)Courage. Their honest writing and personal stories inspired me, challenged my heart, and gave me an online community where one was missing in my real life.

I’m sad to say that I don’t have many girlfriends. I have several friends, who I think the world of, but between working full-time, raising two wonderful boys, and being married to a handsome pilot who travels very frequently…. well, my social life gets pushed to last.

I never expected my “online” and “real life” communities to mesh. They have always been primarily separate worlds, and I was completely  fine with that.

… until I realized I wasn’t.

I have to admit that I would feel a bit envious when I would hear about ladies going to conferences like She Speaks or the Relevant Conference. It just has not been possible for me to go to any of these conferences, even though I would have loved to go. After each conference, I would see all of the photos online of smiling bloggers, meeting and becoming friends in real life…. and again, feel like a square peg in a round hole.

I concluded that blogging was all about cliques, and only “successful” bloggers would be allowed in the clique. Since I couldn’t go to any conferences, I would never be a successful blogger.

However…. :-) … two wonderful things happened:

One — I read Ann Voskamp’s “Upside Down Blogging” which was the kick in the pants that I needed. I no longer care about metrics of “success”. I just want to shine a light for Christ alone! My only success “metric” is whether I am blogging for Him alone! Thank you, Ann!

Two — The whole time I was (falsely) concluding that blogging was all about cliques, the ladies of (in)Courage were brainstorming ways to include me! And YOU! :-) This past week, they make their HUGE announcement — watch it for yourself!

I don’t know how many people thought up the (in)Courage un-conference conference, but I wish I could hug each of them — THANK YOU!

The (in)Courage conference is a way for EVERYONE to be involved in an “online turned in real life” community. This conference is online Friday, April 27, and continues Saturday, April 28, with local “meet ups”. You don’t need to be a blogger to participate! You just need to be interested in joining in the fun and celebration with (in)Courage!

Oh, and you must not be a serial killer…. Okay. I feel better now.

So…. the big question is….. Want to meet in real life? I’m debating on whether to host a gathering locally (in northeast TN) or whether to drive to meet other bloggers close to me (like Brenda and Emily in the Triad, NC). Would you be interested in attending? If so, go register!

If you are local to northeast TN, and would like to meet up with me, please let me know so that I can either go to your meet-up or register to be a host!


  • Jen (Balancing Beauty and Bedlam)

    So glad you are excited. I think that all of us, no matter how “successful” of a blogger (what ever that terms means) deals with many of the same feelings you do. I know I do and I go to all those conferences. I think it’s just Satan’s way of trying to get a little foot in the door because he knows the Lord is going good things.

    Anyhow, I can’t wait to hear what you decide. Hosting one if your area would be fabulous or come on over to the Triad….(Em and I go to the same church, although we don’t even know what we are doing yet either ;)….)

  • Jennifer

    Melanie! I’m so excited also! I’ll be hosting in Georgia. :) Like you, I have delt with “not-a-real-blogger” syndrom. So glad that lie is being thrown out the window! Can’t wait!

  • Joy

    Well, depending on where you decide in NE TN, I might could join you there. or I could possibly join those in NC and Jennifer in GA. I am kind of in the middle of all 3 states! Just depends on if we move to Knoxville or not! LOL Would love to meet other bloggers though since going to conferences are out for me! :)