So, last night I went to the Blog North Awards as part of Manchester Literature Festival. Hosted at the Deaf Institute (one of my very favourite gig venues!), the atmosphere was sizzling with excitement for the entertainment, and of course the awards themselves.
There were some great performances from the likes of The Flashtag Writers, Claire Dean and some of the shortlistees from the Best Writing award category. I particularly loved General Lucifer's Repro-man stories, Kevin Boniface's Huddersfield-postman-tales and Mollie Simpson's teenage diary readings!
The awards category rolled around, and I'd managed to calm my nerves by convincing myself that they must've told the winners beforehand. Best Arts and Culture Blog flicked up on screen, and I prepped myself to buffer any confidence knocks if I didn't win (hey, even being shortlisted was a bloomin' honour) - but somehow, my name was called!
This year there were some glitzy crowns and tiaras up for grabs, and I stumbled nervously up the stage towards them. The judges crowned two winners in our category, so I was lucky enough to share the stage with fellow winner Marc Provins. I made a warbly little speech about the sheer talent of the shortlisted blogs, how unprepared I was, and apparently got a few "aww's" as my voice tremmored saying thankyou.
I'm absolutely over the moon to have won Best Arts & Culture Blog. I've put so much work into this blog over the last few months, and having that recognised in some way is fantastic; a real encouragement. As General Lucifer so rightly said in his winning speech "Blogging sometimes feels like just shouting into a black hole, to hear something back is brilliant".
Thank you to everyone who voted for me, the judges and all the lovely people I met last night!
You can see the full list of winners, runners up and shortlistees at www.blognorthawards.com. Definitely check them out, there's some really fantastic blogs there!