How to survive #SXSW – a guide – #sxswace blogpost

16 Mar

1 – Use Jedi Mind powers when you cross the road. Use the force. Failing that wear a T-Shirt with Yoda on. Like this. It will get you cred points like you wouldn’t believe. Trust me, it was the right T-shirt for this event. ‘It done got good traction’…and that, my friends is a verbatim quote. Hmmm lie to you would I?

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2 – Wear Good shoes. Comfortable shoes. Good comfortable shoes. Preferably ones that can give you cred too. Preferably ones that fit into the lone star state. With style. And they ‘will done get you good traction – as this is a help. You end up walking miles. 10 campuses. Texas is large. So is Austin. And public transport is at best hidden. Wear good shoes.

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3 – Wear sunscreen. This is a given. Especially when you have more target to aim at like me. And you are follically challenged. There are many of us here. I know this. As this is the first time the queue – or standing in line for the gent’s restroom – is about three times the length of the womens’ toilet queue. I know this they took photos of us. The laughed at us. At the follically challenged men with red heads. Wear sunscreen. That is all. It is hot here.

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4 – Make sure you eat breakfast. It is going to be a long day and night. And you can’t live off tacos 24/7. They are not part of your five a day. Neither are Margaritas a food group. Get your daily staples. Get supplies. Get curiosities.

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5 – Get your schedule sorted. Make notes. Take notes. Then be prepared to go to different sessions. There are over 7,000 events in 5 days. Check with your group. Who is going to what. Use the hashtag #sxswace to keep track of changes and events. Above all keep Grouped in.

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6 – In terms of what to go for with sessions – sometimes take a risk and if the keynote sessions are covered go to a smaller group discussion. You may get asked back to do a live podcast the following day and be on a panel. Worked for me. So as Humphrey Bogart said – Sometimes a hot-dog at the ballgame is better than a steak at the Ritz…

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7 – Take time to discover new things. That may take you away from the Convention Centre. That is good. Get some space. Take pictures. See More of Austin. Talk to new people. Take your badge off. Go for lunch away from the festival. It refreshes you. It recharges you. See some Art.

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8 – See things in a new light. From a different perspective. Reflect on what you have seen and heard. Look at familiar things from a new place.

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9 – Read the notice boards. Stuck to the clingfilmed pillars are some surprises. The stuff that happens isn’t just in the sessions. It is with the people and the place.

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10 – The Creative Producers team have wide ranging and diverse skills. Make connections and scan QR codes. You never know what you might unlock.

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11 – Austin is an inspring City. It has contrasts and craziness. it has people and more space than you can imagine

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12 – Remember to unwind and download the info. Preferably round a table. Outside. With new friends

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Keep moving #onwards…

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