Jane knows what you are thinking, dear reader. You are thinking: how can we choose only 5 Phenomenal Folks from the Forum when there were dozens of phenomenal folks there? Jane is not promising that these five are THE ONLY phenomenal folks...just that they are five folks who knocked our socks off! That deserves mention, don't you agree? And, to those who visit Lip-sticking to learn more about marketing to women online, reading the blogs of these folks is a very good start.
1. Jory Des Jardins, whose blog-- Pause -- is outrageous, funny, intellectual, inspiring, and just an all-around good read. We've mentioned Jory before... having 'happened' upon her blog by chance some time ago, noting her unique writing style and her ability to capture the moment using tone, imagery, and personal insight. She surprised Jane by showing up at the NewComm, and what a marvelous suprise it was! Such a bundle of writing energy in such a tiny girl-- a girl who is all woman, but so special, the mother in us wants to hug the little girl in her. We wonder if her own mother-- whom she wrote about recently-- feels that way sometimes. As if holding our daughters (and sons) tightly to our bosom will protect them from the Nightmares on Elm Street that life is so full of, sometimes. Well, regardless. We think Jory has a bright future ahead of her. Mark her name down...it will be one of note in this millennium.
2. Neville Hobson -- who writes NevOn -- gave us the shivers! Neville is already a celebrity, as far as Jane can tell. To be in the same room with him, and have him know us by our blog! We almost melted! Neville is a tall man, with a marvelous smile, and so friendly, one would never know he's as famous as... Tom Cruise, Peter Jennings, or Lance Armstrong (take your pick). Well, okay...we're giving him status he may not agree with-- but to us, he's every bit as important and exciting as those gentlemen. Meanwhile, we would like to offer readers a glimpse into what Neville is like by inviting you to click over to the Hobson and Holtz Report: Feb. 7, 2005, a podcast Neville conducts with Shel Holtz, another fab personality we met at the forum. Watch for more on Neville in future posts. (we told you he was friendly...he has agreed to an interview...a very special interview...sometime soon!)
3. Jennifer McClure -- from Albrycht-McClure -- the absolutely terrific young woman who worked with us on the room arrangements at the Forum, who was there to greet us after we drove for hours and hours in snarled SF traffic, and who was the go-to gal for anything anybody needed, throughout the conference. Jennifer is far more impressive than her friendly, open, welcoming demeanor leads one to believe. From her bio on the Albrycht-McClure website we learned that: "Ms. McClure was PR manager for ZD Events, producer of some of the world's largest tradeshows and conferences (including COMDEX)." The bio goes on and on... paragraph after paragraph outlining this young woman's accomplishments, but all we know is that she made us feel welcome, she did one fabulous job of coordinating the events, and we hope we meet up with her again someday, in order to have a real conversation. Jane is certain Jennifer could teach us a lot about PR!
4. Jennifer Rice -- What's Your Brand Mantra? -- whom we met not at the Forum (she went to Seattle to the Blog Summit), but who met us for lunch on Friday, in Dallas! This most impressive young woman, who writes with a maturity and knowledge far beyond her mere 20-something years (she tried to tell us she was past the 29 year mark, but...we have a hard time believing that-- it's not that she's so attractive, it's that her smile and her enthusiasm seem in tune with our own daughters, who are twenty-somethings; we hope Jennifer considers this a compliment). For insight into branding, you need only read one post of Jennifer's to 'get it.' Click on over to her blog and see what she's up to these days. Exciting stuff. Jane is so lucky to have such a smart, fun, and phenomenal friend!
5. Evelyn Rodriquez-- Crossroads Dispatches -- who we have saved for last because...one saves the best for last, doesn't one? Evelyn isn't the best because she's the smartest, or the most talented, or the most sincere-- she's the best because she was one of the first blogs Jane started reading, and because Evelyn believes-- in people. Evelyn was in the heart of the tsunami when it hit-- you will have to visit her blog to learn more about that, we are not qualified to comment on it-- but, Jane would like all to know that Evelyn's writing, about her experience in Thailand, and about what she thinks of life, business, people, marketing...any number of things...is given so freely, and written so expertly, that anything Jane writes pales in comparison. There is a Jane Austin, a Virgina Woolf, or a Mary Shelley hiding in Evelyn's soul somewhere. A struggling writer who writes in spite of herself-- who paints grand pictures of a world created in her imagination but one that comes alive beneath her pen.
In conclusion, we must say that meeting Evelyn and ALL of the phenomenal folks here, was such a treat, we are still basking in the pleasure of it.
What's not to like about that?