Me and The MADs

MAD Blog Awards

If you’re a blogger, the chances are you’ll be aware of a certain annual event called The MAD Blog Awards. If you’re not a blogger, you may already be scratching your head.

These awards come around every year and are – in the most part – received with a great sense of excitement in the UK parent blogging community.

For some, the idea of an awards ceremony for bloggers isn’t that appealing, as the idea of pitting bloggers “against each other” and creating a sense of competition isn’t what blogging is about for them. For others though, they see the awards as a great way to showcase their blog and find new blogs they’ve never come across before. It’s a celebration of the diverse talent around, even though it’s clear we can’t ALL win.

Personally, I’m in the latter group.

I was lucky enough to attend the 2011 MAD Blog Awards ceremony as a finalist in the Best Baby Blog category. Finding out I was shortlisted came at a really poignant time for me. I’d just decided not to return to my pre-pregnancy job and was beginning a new direction in my career, branching out from solely broadcast journalism, to writing feature articles for magazines, blogging, copywriting and doing the odd bit of radio presenting. I was newly self-emplyed and a bit scared. Making it as a finalist for a national award gave my self-confidence a much-needed boost and helped confirm that I was still good at something other than just changing dirty nappies.

This year things are different. I’m still self-employed and, working in the media industry, the landscape I work in is often changing. Blogging is now a part of what I “do” to bring home the bacon, but it’s also something I would do whether I was paid or not. I love it. It’s more than just a hobby or a job, it’s now part of who I am. When one area of my work is quiet or not going so well, my blog is always here as a quiet sanctuary to come back to and be creative. This will remain the same if I win an award or not.


But. Well, it’s nice to be recognised isn’t it? Whether it’s from my blogging peers or those of you who read this blog and still aren’t really sure what a blog actually is. To find out you’ve been nominated for doing something you love is a little bit special. Or maybe that’s just me.

What I'm doing when I'm not blogging or working - being covered in stickers by my toddler.

What I’m doing when I’m not blogging or working – being covered in stickers by my toddler.

So I’m going to embrace The MAD Blog Awards 2013 and cast my votes now. And I’m not going to be coy about the fact I would LOVE to be nominated by you if you enjoy what you read here. I’ve had a look through the categories and the only ones I could crowbar myself into are the Best Writer, Most Entertaining or Best Family Life categories.

If you’d like to vote, you’ll need to go to the MAD Blog Awards 2013 website and choose who you’d like to nominate in each category. You’ll be asked for the blog URL (in my case, this is and your own name and email address. It’s quite simple really – even I managed it.

I think it’s a great opportunity to discover some new blogs and shout about the ones that you love. And if you’re in the mood for discovering new blogs, here are a few you might like to add to your reading list:

Adventures of a Middle-Aged Matron

Dorky Mum

Capture by Lucy

Lulastic and the Hippyshake

Slugs on the Refrigerator

Not Another Mummy Blog

Northern Mum

Hello It’s Gemma



  1. says

    all this nominating & voting business makes me feel a bit uneasy & although it’s nice to be nominated I’ve never asked which is why it came as an amazing surprise to me when I was nominated & short listed last year! I would love to go to the MAD’s again as it was a great night, but it was a miracle that I made it last year so I’m not holding my breath this year! πŸ˜‰

    • says

      Never say never! To be honest, I think people will vote for who they like if they’re going to vote. For me, writing a post about it is a way of reminding people in the non-blogging community what the MADs are and how they can get involved. x

    • says

      It’s a great night out with some brilliant people. There’s free wine. Plus you get to discover some amazing new blogs along the way. I’m a fan.

  2. says

    You are SO LUSH. Thanks, what an awesome list of bloggers.

    I am not sure what camp I am in, y’know. I loved the awards, and the sense of community felt afterwards (for a few weeks)… and I couldn’t believe I was nominated. But I am not sure it is healthy for me, personally. I don’t want to fret about people voting for me, or getting through or not getting through, or winning, or not winning. It messes with my mind. I wish it didn’t. But I think it does.

    • says

      I absolutely know what you mean. Last year I was surprised at how gutted I was not to be shortlisted. But you know what? If you live your life like that way, worrying you might not get every opportunity that you want or that you might not win etc then you’re going to miss all sorts of lovely experiences and exciting things. That’s the way I look at it anyway. As long as you can keep it in perspective then I think it’s a good thing. But I know that’s not always easy – especially with something so personal as blogging!

  3. says

    I needed to read this as the Mad Blog Awards kind of intimidate me and feel like a rather lame blogger in comparison to others. Sometimes I do feel that the some of the UK parenting blogging world can be a bit cruel in it’s competitiveness and they start stating what they feel are the rules of blogging.

    I definitely understand the feeling of appreciation when you are recognised for something that you do that really matters to you. I have actually followed some bloggers from last years awards. So I will embrace them a bit more.

    Oh…I SO nominated you…really love the way you write x

    • says

      I think any type of awards can be intimidating, but if you never put yourself out there and “throw your hat into the ring” so to speak, you might end up missing opportunities. I try to avoid the idea of comparisons and focus on the fun side and discovering new blogs. Plus there was free wine at the 2011 awards I went to – always a bonus!

  4. says

    This is such a good post πŸ™‚ great balance between acknowledging the negatives but pushing the positives. I guess like absolutely everything else blogging related – charts, FB groups, reviews etc – it comes down to the fact that if you think it’s fun you should get involved and if you hate it then you shouldn’t! Nowt worse than self appointed blogging police though, telling other people how to approach it. I think we forget sometimes that it’s not other people’s responsibility to ensure that we have a great time online and enjoy everything we read. If you’re bothered by the number of posts, tweets, FB statuses etc asking for votes then you can always *whisper it* turn your computer off for a day or two πŸ˜‰

    • says

      Totally agree. I’ve got to admit I did steer clear of Twitter for a few hours as my feed was full of MADs stuff, but I certainly don’t think the awards themselves are a bad thing – quite the opposite. Just keeping the fun, positive stuff in mind is the way to approach it I reckon!

  5. Ghislaine Forbes says

    Don’t forget that if you get nominated you might still not win…….wise people like your mother say it’s all in the taking part, but my lovely daughter might not agree. Love ma x

  6. says

    Thank you so much for the mention. I almost feel as if I should do an acceptance speech for making it this far.

    I always think the Mads looks like such a great party – and that aspect seems to attract many. Recognition is lovely of course!

    Will buy you wine when I see you!


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