I apologize beforehand for the length of this post, but I didn’t want to break it up into more pieces…
We are back from Eroticon and after sleeping for almost twelve hours, I feel like my brain is willing to work again. I have a mountain of things to write, but I will not be able to write anything else until my Eroticon post has been written.
Ever since January, when Master T said he would be going to London with me, I had been excited for our trip. There were old friends to see again and new friends to be made.
When we woke up on Thursday morning, we still had to pack our bags. This is not like I normally do it, because normally I would have started packing at least a four days before the trip. We ended up taking only one suitcase, which is new too as we normally took two! We were at the airport far too early, which meant we could take our time to do everything, but I was happy when we finally sat in the plane and were ready to go. The flight from Rotterdam Airport to London City Airport is so short that you literally go up and then you feel that the plane is descending again. At 10.45am, an hour after we took off at exactly the same time, we landed at London City. Getting our luggage was quick and before we know, we were outside, looking for a cab, which we also found quickly.
Traffic in London was terrible and 60 pounds later, we finally were at our hotel. The cab driver – Simon – offered to pick us up and bring as back to the airport on Monday, which is an offer we immediately accepted. He gave us his mobile number and off he went. We couldn’t check in right away but stored our baggage and sat down in the lobby for a drink and waiting for our lunch date. The beautiful Pearl was there an hour later and we had a lovely lunch, lovely talk and just generally enjoyed finally meeting her after talking to her from the moment we were on Twitter.
Between lunch and dinner we took our bags up to the room and unpacked everything. Then we were ready for our dinner date. We had to walk about 200 meters – which Master T could just about manage – and there Sub Bee waited for us. It was wonderful to finally meet her, to hug her, to just sit beside her and enjoy being there. Next to walk in was Hyacinth and damn, was it good to see her again! It’s been two years and I just forgot how beautiful she is and how lovely it is to listen to her stories. Then, in came Kayla Lords and John Brownstone and they are just the kindest and sweetest couple. We had a wonderful dinner, a wonderful evening and I think it must have been about 9pm when we wandered back to our hotel.
Master T was up for some more walking so we went upstairs to get our cameras and walked around the hotel a bit, taking photos of the beautiful lights. We were back in our hotel within an hour and decided to have another drink or two before bedtime.
We decided to have breakfast at Weatherspoons and I can tell you, I was not impressed. At first there was this thing where you couldn’t order from your table, but I could step over it. I didn’t really like the fact that I got an empty cup and had to get my own coffee from the machine, but that part is more or less okay too. What I really didn’t like was that our food was half cold when we got it and I had to go back downstairs because they gave me a fork and a spoon and it’s very difficult to cut a sausage with either of that! While waiting for the knife, of course my food cooled down further.
Once back in our room, we got our cameras again for some daytime photos in Camden. We might have been outside for an hour, maybe more before we returned to our hotel. Having a drink, Rose checked in and joined us. We decided to walk over to the venue, where several people were busy to get ready for the next day. While I helped to fill the goodie bags, Master T took a couple of photos, with permission of the people around.
Friday night Meet & Greet
Just before we went to the Meet & Greet, and after we had dinner at Wagamama with Rose and Alethea, we met Leyana, who I have been talking to on Twitter for about five years. I loved that I could introduce her to several people, but also that we met some lovely people, whom we haven’t met before. I don’t want to fall into the trap of mentioning names here because I’m afraid I might forget some people and I don’t want to do that. I just love that we met some interesting and sweet new people, but also that we connect with friends again.
It was during this evening that I realized just how much I love this community, that this is the place where I can be 100% myself, where I am accepted for who I am, where I belong!
At 11pm we had to leave the Glass Room at 11pm and some of us decided to move the party to the lobby of the hotel. We were joined by the ever so sweet and beautiful Honey, her man Ian, Alethea and Rose and Luke + Jack who I have only briefly spoken to two years ago in Bristol, but got to know much better this weekend. They are wonderful! We drank and talked and drank some more and one by one people started leaving to go to bed, until we decided that it was time to do the same. It was already 3am then!
We were surprisingly awake on Saturday morning for two people who had to be up on time after sleeping so little. I was a bit hungover, but other than that okay. We were on time to get a good spot for the opening of Eroticon 2018. After Molly’s welcome, Girl on the Net did the keynote and like always, I was amazed at her enthusiasm and the way in which she gets the message across! This year she looked back on 2017 and the events that influence our world of sex and erotica, but she also looked forward on 2018 and had one important message: Your Words Can Change The World.
Session 1: KinkCraft
We started off gently by sitting down with KinkCraft to make a collar. In previous years we have made cuffs and mini floggers, so we needed to make the collar to complete our collection. Master T just couldn’t get into it, so he gave up, but I am quite pleased with the collar I had made!
Session 2: Kayla Lords – How to Make Money from Your Blog Without Losing Your Soul or Your Audience
Kayla’s enthusiasm for what she does was so obvious in her session. To me there was nothing new in her session, as I have already made a study of the Smutlancer website, but I know that this session was very valuable to many who sat there and want to monetize their blogs but have no idea where to start. This session was good, and if you feel you have not made enough notes or maybe you chose for another session or you weren’t at Eroticon at all but still want to learn about this subject, go to the Smutlancer website. ALL information is there, as well as the contents of this session!
Session 3: Annabelle Knight – The Erotica Effect – Exploring the Modern Dimensions of the Erotica Genre
I am really sorry to say this, but even after listening to Annabelle for 45 minutes I still don’t know what she tried to say. From someone else I understood she discussed the five E’s of the Erotica effect, which are Escapism, Eroticism, Education, Experimentation and Experiences, but once again, I am sorry to say that this is not what I got from it. Annabelle’s voice trailed off at time and maybe her message didn’t get across because of that and her standing in one place all the time. I don’t know, but (and once again I am really sorry to say this) his was the worst session we attended at Eroticon. I ended up wishing I had gone to one of the other sessions.
Session 4: Anna Sky – Self-Editing Tips and Tricks
Anna’s session was good and jam-packed with information for writers. How do you self-edit? Why do you self-edit? What can you use to self-edit? What are the benefits of self-editing? I learned nothing new here, but loved how Anna got her points across and how she she made sure that everyone knew the importance of self-editing but also have the tools to do so.
Some reference was made to the Smut Marathon and how self-editing your pieces for the Smut Marathon is essential and which tools you can use for that.
I love this part of the Saturday on Eroticon, where people can experience different kinky things. This year Michael and Molly had their collection on display again and a couple of times I heard whips and paddles connection with the bottoms of willing ‘victims’. Delegates could try out vacuum play, either in a cube or in a bed. The idea of both of those freaked me out as even just looking at others made me feel claustrophobic. I concentrated on the other activity – wax play – where Rose, Charlie and Charlie were volunteers to feel the hot wax dripping on their bodies. I made pictures of and for both and just loved it!
Saturday night social
During the KinkLab, Master T said that he was not going to the social. His leg was hurting too much and he preferred to stay in the lobby of the hotel. I was torn between going by myself or staying with him and at first chose the first, thinking I just cannot stay away. But, I was not feeling well. I had no idea what was wrong. We grabbed a burger with some other delegates and I told them I would stay with Master T but we will be in the lobby when they return. We were not, as we went upstairs where I fell asleep (this is very strange for me). I slept for an hour and then we went back downstairs to join the drinking and laughter. My wine tasted strange, my head felt strange, I was on the verge of tears… I was not feeling well. At 11pm, I excused myself and went to bed, where I had a good cry. My head was just too full to socialize and I think if I had gone to the social event in the pub, I would have broken down. I needed some time to myself.
In hindsight, I think I know what was wrong on Saturday night. Back when mom and I discussed her funeral, we also talked about flowers and she wanted strelitzias to be placed around her grave once the coffin went down. Last year, when we decided to not go to Eroticon, mom wasn’t happy because she wanted us to go. On Thursday, when we sat downstairs in the lobby, I was busy on my phone and Master T went outside to smoke. Something told me to look up and when I did, there was a man outside walking by with two big bushes of flowers in his arms: strelitzias. It was as if mom was telling me that it’s good that we were on London. Then on Friday at the Meet & Greet I had this feeling that this is where I belong, that these are my people. And then, Saturday, I had a good day networking with the sponsors to find sponsors for the Smut Marathon and that gave me a boost of adrenaline too. I think all the things together were just too much…
I was totally back to being myself on Sunday and ready to learn some new things and network with the sponsor some more!
Session 1: Cressida Downing – Is there a book in your blog?
This was a session with a workshop setup and where Cressida interviewed bloggers and asked them seven questions about their blogs:
1. What’s your blog’s topic?
2. What’s your take on that topic?
3. What are your readers looking for?
4. What else is around in your topic/area?
5. Are you looking to self-publish or submit to a publisher?
6. Do you take away free content?
7. Can you take the blog as a starting point and launch the book in a different direction, for example fiction versus non-fiction, a how-to, a memoir?
This session was interesting and informative, and listening to the answers of the bloggers who volunteered to be interviewed, some ideas formed in my mind…
Session 2: Fetish.com – Getting it up! How to raise your writing visibility on Google
I could have stayed with these guys for hours and wish their session was a lot longer, as I think they have a lot to teach bloggers about SEO and keywords and how to be more visible out there. This really was a good session and I will be contacting them for some advice, I am sure of that. I hope they will be back again next year, maybe for more than one session, or a double feature or maybe even a workshop or consulting session!
Session 3: Sarah Brynn Holliday; Sarah Jane – Financial Wizardry for Sex Bloggers
An interesting session with good information. Most of the information was known already, but I have taken from this session how to decide on my fees and also that I should reconsider doing free toy reviews. I still have to think about that one, but at least the information I got here really got me thinking more about finally making some money with my blog in a regular way and not only on occasion.
After this last session there was a raffle for different prizes and the farewell. I sat there and thought about the two days and knew I have done well. As you can see, there were some sessions we have skipped, because I opted to talk to the sponsors and wanted to get some of them on board for the Smut Marathon, something I have succeeded in! This makes me happy!
We moved the ‘end party’ over to our hotel, where another Dutch blogger whom we have met earlier that day, Veronique, joined us, as well as Ian and Madeleine. Later Luke + Jack joined us too and a bit later Rose, Molly, Michael, Cara, Kayla and John arrived too. Finally, Molly and I could spend some time together, talking about Eroticon and the Smut Marathon and both already looking forward to next year’s Eroticon!
I look back on a good weekend. We have reconnected with old friends, made new ones and I am taking home information that will help me with my goals. I still have some questions to some a a couple of hurdles to overcome, but I have the standing offer from the beautiful Kayla to mail her anytime I want and she will help me overcome those hurdles. I know where I am heading but I seem to have this block in me to set those first steps. It’s like I don’t believe I can pull this off even though I know I can. So with a little help from my friends… I will definitely get there. Eroticon has boost my confidence again.
PS: We have met lovely people this weekend and there were people I really wanted to meet and I did, but I am not going to put their names here as I am afraid I might leave someone out and that will just be rude! You all know who you are and I really hope to see you again next year!
© Rebel’s Notes