Tuesday, May 25, 2004

TechEd party!

When you get to bed at 2:30, getting up at 7:30 really isn’t an optimal situation. Plus, I had to get packed to move rooms. For some reason, the Westgate decided that I needed to change rooms. Something about changing rates so they had to give me a nicer suite. It was the same damn room, but with one king bed instead of two twins. Oh, and a pair of hospital-grade slippers under the sink.

Much of the rest of the day was a wonderful blur. I saw my friend Theresa for the first time in 16 years as she sought me out at the CMP booth. (If you need consulting services, make sure to give AVI Consulting a ring.) I met a list of people too long to recount here – including people who are interested in writing for TechNet Magazine, people who want to advertise in TechNet Magazine, and people who want to subscribe to TechNet Magazine. Guess what’s been on my mind this week?

Our annual MSDN Magazine party kicked off at 9:30 PM. Every year it gets more buzz around it, and this year saw people lined up outside to get in. And that includes people who weren’t actually invited – next year we have to figure out some armband system or something. It got to be a bit messy.

Being the center of attention at a party of 150 people in a bar is an odd experience. A lot of people wanted to talk about submitting content, and about how to get involved with TechNet Magazine. The one hard part about these shows is that I really, really like a lot of people on a personal level, but I also have to find the time to talk to dozens of folks in just three hours. It’s something I’ve worked on year after year – being graceful and perhaps moving to the next person even though you still want to hear from the person you’re with. Since I’m not naturally a party guy, I do have to put on my TechEd face before doing this – it’s good to learn how to be more social in any event.

One thing I’ve spoken with Sara Williams about in the past is strategies we can adopt to improve the gender representation in our author pool. I know that there are good female authors out there, but it’s not easy to find them! I really feel that if we can sign more qualified female authors, we can help lead perceptions that we don’t have to be a male-dominated industry. Sara has done her part by introducing all the women authors she knows. I don’t have a written goal for it, but I know that we’re not there yet.

Anyway, things broke up at about 2:30 AM again. Two more days of TechEd fun.

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