Upcoming event: GGTP#71 Pokémon Go Litter Pick

pokemonSunday 16th July, 1-4pm, Northern Quarter
Tickets £3.50 (including refreshments) – click here to book

For our July event, we’re going out and about in Manchester’s Northern Quarter, with two goals in mind: to clean up the streets, and to Catch ‘Em All.

Yes, that’s right, we’re literally that stupid – our event will be a litter picking walk around Manchester city centre, while simultaneously playing Pokémon Go on our phones. We’re nearing the one-year anniversary of the game’s release, so even if you find you haven’t played on it for… just under a year, or if you never got into it in the first place, now’s your chance to give it a spin.

We’ll be meeting at MadLab on Edge Street at 1pm, with a half-hour intro to Pokémon Go for anyone who needs to learn how to play or would like a refresher, and heading off from there at 1.30pm for an hour and a half of picking and Pokéing around town. We’ll split into small groups, or you can choose your own route, as long as you join us at the finish – Travelling Man on Dale Street – at 3pm. We’ll then collect in all your rubbish bags, and head next door to Nexus Art Cafe for a cup of tea and some cake (included in your ticket).

We’ll provide rubbish bags, litter pickers and rubber gloves, but you’ll need to bring a smartphone with the Pokémon Go app installed – and make sure it’s fully charged, or bring a spare battery pack, as it uses up the battery pretty fast!

We’ll also be awarding cool prizes – generously donated by Travelling Man – to the attendee that catches the most Pokémon during the hour-and-a-half (in order to enter, make sure you’re at MadLab before 1.30pm and show us your current Pokémon tally – we’ll check again at the end) and to the attendee that picks up the most litter (to be judged as we collect in the bags).

Event review: Tea Party #62 : Blogging Workshop

Following on from our successful event back in January, Tea Party #58: Meet the Bloggers, our May event picked up the theme of blogging again, with presentations from bloggers, followed by some practical hands-on sessions to try out some blogging platforms and set up a beginner blog on Medium, get some useful hints & tips on using platforms such as Blogger, and on sourcing copyright-cleared images to use, and even have a go at adding a post to the Girl Geeks site (yes, this very post!)

The presentations covered various blogging platforms, and our presenters shared the things they’d learned from doing their blogs, from images to metrics to managing comments. First up was Olivia from Liv’s Recovery Kitchen who told us all about the site, which she set up using Weebly, a good platform if you want a visual site and the option to have different layouts. The site used different sections and index pages, and also included recipes which present more of a challenge to format. Olivia also spoke about the Blog On conference, where bloggers come together to network, which she found very valuable.

Next up was Katie @stecks, showing us how we add content to the Manchester Girl Geeks site, hosted on WordPress. Katie explained how we use it to advertise our events, using “sticky” posts (which always appear first, good to draw attention to upcoming events!). Natalie @natcliberty followed with a look at her Blogger blog, Engineer with Unique Style, including how she could keep track of stats, and also some useful tips on using images and photos.

Our final speaker Karen @kpudner took us through the blogging platform Medium, a straightforward platform that would make a good entry level blog as it is very simple to add content and images, and also has a “feed” feature to help you follow other blogs on there – similar to Twitter (although with much longer posts, of course!).

After a quick break, we began our interactive sessions, with attendees free to choose a group to join in – either getting practical advice on sourcing free-to-use images, setting up and having a go at blogging using Medium, working on a tutorial on Blogger, sharing tips and having some time to work on their own blogs, and also the chance to contribute to this very post on the “help us write an event review” table, where this post began!

Attendees that visited the table had the following observations on what they’d seen on the other tables…

Writing reviews proved fruitful for one of the bloggers, with lots of freebies sent to her to review for her blog.

There were many different platforms to appeal to different bloggers and different topics – in fact, something for everyone!

As is tradition at Girl Geek Tea Parties, there was a selection of tasty home-baked cakes – Gem @gem_hill‘s ginger cake and Katie’s apple cake were particularly popular – both had completely “disappeared” by the end of the event!

Review collated by Emily @emilylovedhim, with lots of input from the attendees who visited this table. Thank you! I didn’t manage to make a note of names, so if you were one of them, please do put your name in the comments so I can credit you properly.

‘Meet The Bloggers’ inspires women writers

We’ve had some great responses to our ‘Meet The Bloggers’ event on Sunday 24th January. Organisers Zoe E Breen and Karen Pudner put together a stellar line up of bloggers from beginners to experienced writers across a range of platforms.

In case you didn’t make it to the event, you can get a snapshot of the great talks and Q&A panel session in our write-up here.

Below is a selection of the feedback we’ve had from speakers and attendees.

Co-organiser Karen was inspired to start her own blog on Medium, writing about unsung electronic music pioneer Else Pade.

Attendee Chrissy wrote on her blog Making it Mindful:

The response from the bloggers warmed my heart. It felt so lovely to hear that I wasn’t the only one to have worried about things such as ‘What will my friends from school say?’ ‘What if people I actually know start saying nasty things about me?’.

So, I have decided to share my blog just in case anyone found it interesting and also because I am trying to do things that scare me a bit more regularly.

You can keep up with the blog on Twitter here: @makingitmindful

After the event, speaker Gill Kiernan wrote on The Curious Quill Blog about her advice:

Basically just go for it, try a free hosting site and if you find you don’t like it then you’ve lost nothing and at least you gave it a go.

I’m so glad that I attended. All the other speakers were brilliant and I learned so much from them.

You can follow Gill on Twitter here: @GillKiernan

Creator of blog Liv’s Locomotion, Olivia Pennelle contacted us after the event to say:

I absolutely loved the event! I was so inspired! I’ve taken on board all of the suggestions and have a limitless pot of ideas to take forward… I’ve grown my Twitter followers to over 450, I’ve contacted magazines and two want to feature my story and I’m attemping to collaborate with other writers.

You can follow Olivia on Twitter here: @Livslocomotion

Attendee Una contacted us to say:

Thanks for a wonderful afternoon – trying to put into practice what I learnt on the day.

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From left to right back row: Gill Kiernan, Claire Gowler, Rosie Campbell, Natalie-Claire Luwisha, Claire Sudbury and Sophie, and Zoe Breen (Manchester Girl Geeks) at the front.

Thanks again to all our speakers and attendees, and hope to see you again soon at one of our future events!

Event review: Meet The Bloggers aka Girl Geeks Tea Party #58

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From left to right back row: Gill Kiernan, Claire Gowler, Rosie Campbell, Natalie-Claire Luwisha, Claire Sudbury and Sophie, and Zoe Breen (Manchester Girl Geeks) at the front.
Blogging is a great way to get your voice out there, connect with other writers, and promote your work or views at a very low cost.

We invited a diverse line-up of bloggers to take part in our Meet The Bloggers tea party at MadLab. The downstairs of the venue was packed with aspiring bloggers and those otherwise curious about what it takes to set up and promote your own blog.
On Twitter: @madlabuk

Natalie-Claire blogs under the guise of Engineer with a Unique Style, she is passionate about the role women can play in the world of STEM (that’s science, technology, engineering, maths). Natalie recently graduated with a masters degree in structural engineering at Salford University and generously shared her blogging tips.
On Twitter: @NatCLiberty

Gill talked with enthusiasm about her blog, The Curious Quill (name inspired by Suede lyrics) which recounts her many adventures to sci-fi events big and small. She explained how the blog, along with social media channels, was a great way to connect with others attending conventions.
On Twitter: @GillKiernan

Sophie shared a great presentation which gave the audience a flavour of her blog, Scientific Beauty, where she delves into the science behind commercial skin treatments and cosmetics. She had some great tips for professional-looking photography and social media promotion, impressing us further with her homemade hashtag biscuits.
On Twitter: @sciencebeaut

Claire Gowler explained how one blog entry on her website Kitation, which explored how requests for gender data are often clumsily handled, kicked off her speaking career. Since first writing about the subject in 2014, Claire has been asked to talk about non-binary gender at more than a dozen conferences and events.
On Twitter: @Kitation

Rosie Campbell from BBC Research & Development gave a great evaluation of the main free blogging tools available. She also shared how blogging had led to invitations to speak at conferences and other opportunities to collaborate such as contributing to a magazine article. She urged the audience to have a go at blogging and not feel like impostors.
On Twitter: @RosieCampbell

Clare Sudbery works is a software developer at Manchester-based LateRooms and also blogs as Woman In Tech on Medium. She has written on the web for many years on and off as well as publishing novels. Claire combines blogging for her employer with writing her own stuff on Medium and is in high demand as a conference speaker.
On Twitter: @ClareSudbery

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Upcoming event: GGTP #58 Meet the bloggers

24th January, MadLab, Edge Street
2-4pm, tickets £2.50

Blogs offer a great platform to get your voice heard – this can be through sharing  your ideas or expertise, debating issues you’re interested in or raising your profile.

Resident Manchester Girl Geek, @ZoeEBreen, will host this afternoon of talks from some top blogging talent. You’ll get tips on getting started and hear some great stories from our guest speakers.

After breaking for tea and cake the speakers will make-up  a panel eager to answer all your blogging queries.

The line-up will be as follows:

Starting out blogging

Gillian Kiernan @GillKiernan started her blog The Curious Quill Blog September 2015 – writes about geeky shows and events she attended.

Natalie-C Liberty ( @natcliberty) started her blog ‘Engineer With Unique Style’ where she reflects on her academic and personal achievements. She set up her blog in December 2014.

Raising awareness

Scientific Beauty (Sophie @sciencebeaut) looks at the science behind cosmetics in The Scientific Beauty.

Claire (@kitation)- has written and spoken on the theme ‘Ask About Gender’, find out more on the kitation blog.

Career blogs

Rosie Campbell (@RosieCampbell) is a Research Technologist at BBC Research & Development and writes on various BBC blogs as well as other platforms.

Clare Sudbery – Software Engineer, Late Rooms – writes on both Medium and LateRooms blog.

Click here for more information and to book