This year again, I had a chance to be part of organizing team for WordCamp Pune 2017.
I am almost a week late to write this as I had a lot of backlogs piled up. I ended up giving more time to the WordCamp than I initially planned. But it was totally worth it!
Jumbo Organising Team
We had a team of 19 organizers which might itself be a record for any city-level WordCamp.
The size of our team was helpful as we had somebody dedicated to every aspect.
As we inched closer to the WordCamp, we set up a daily standup over Slack + Google hangout. Of course, as we had a big team, not everyone was expected to attend every single day. But it helped us move things forward quickly.
Apart from my favorite department food, I got an opportunity to contribute to few more areas, especially the content on WordCamp site.
I started my journey as a blogger, so writing is always going to be close to my heart. ❤️
I think this might have been the first time after my professional blogging years when I had a streak of 12 days where I published at least one post a day.
I wish I could do similar writing streak for my blog here!
During all these writings, I interacted with many speakers and sponsors. One thing, I repeatedly asked them was to send content written as a third person!
On few occasions, I was asked to write my bio as a third person in the past, but I did not realize its importance until this WordCamp.
The reason I asked for third party content was that most people, especially sponsors, made claims which if I published as it is, would have read as an endorsement from me or the WordCamp Pune directly.
Also sometimes speakers, wrote about their past work, contributions, and achievements. They would have read as my or WordCamp Pune’s contributions and achievements.
So writing content as a third person can avoid many problem in some cases.
The WordCamp Itself
It went a lot smoother compared to the last WordCamp Pune.
I think this venue worked better for us, even with few extra restrictions it had.
The most notable restriction was not allowing us to use any kind of cooking equipment. We were denied permission for a basic electric grill too.
It affected food taste as we couldn’t serve it as hot as we would have done otherwise. It also introduced some logistics issues as the kitchen was at a remote location.
This also gave us an idea of adding an all day food counter. The idea came when we were discussing things we could do to avoid rush during lunch hour.
On a positive side, the venue layout helped overall WordCamp run very smooth. We had four tracks and all of them were very close. They were also close to the common networking area, happiness bar, sponsors stall, all day food counters.
Interviewing Kumar Abhirup
During WordCamp, as a speaker, I got an opportunity to interview Kumar Abhirup, the youngest WordCamp speaker.
— Aj Maurya (@aalootechie) January 15, 2017
My dad always says that some people are just born talented. I think Kumar Abhirup is one such born talent! There is no other way you can train a 13-year-old to do much in his life.
Kumar is using Jetpack, Yoast SEO and many top notch WordPress plugins and building his WordPresss site the same way experts do. He is already monetizing them using Google AdSense, paid reviews and affiliate marketing. All this at the age of 13!
About the session – It was Kumar’s first WordCamp talk as a speaker. It was also mine first as an interviewer. We decided to meet online before WordCamp for some preparation for the Q&A session. But as we both were busy, we couldn’t.
But from my past interactions with him, I was very sure that he will do much better than me. It turned up like that only. I couldn’t get rid of nervousness till the end but Kumar appeared confident throughout the session!
If you missed Kumar Abhirup’s session, do watch it’s video when it goes live on WordPress.tv.
I have few more memoeries to share around WordCamp Pune.
People confusing Devin as an England cricket player
Devin Walker on his way to WordCamp Pune (from the US) took a flight from Mumbai to Pune which was also carrying England cricket team.
Some people confused Devin as an England cricketer. They even took selfies with Devin.
Moreover, some ground staff at the airport even asked Devin to get on the team bus! That same support staff even offered to pick Devin’s luggage to the bus.
Devin shared this and a lot more stuff over drinks and dinner!
Foosball during pre-WordCamp event
I enjoyed playing Foosball with other WordCamp folks.
Meeting Deepak Yadav as an old time Devils’ Workshop Reader
Though I no longer blog at my first professional blog Devils’ Workshop, it’s always a pleasure to run into old Devils’ Workshop readers.
So when Deepak talked about Devils’ Workshop, especially early days, it was a nice walk down the memory lane!
(Thanks Bigul & Ratnesh for featured image)