{BritMums Live} Notes and Quotes

I attended a few sessions and spoke in a few at BritMums Live this year. There were some incredible inspirational speakers, some charismatic speakers, some well-informed speakers and some hilarious speakers. These are the  Notes and Quotes I remembered to take from the talks I attended.

Finding Your Voice- Judith O’Reilly, Jane Blackmore, Lucy Mangan, Lucy Cavendish

Writing is 5% talent and 95% graft- JO’R

Writing is 95% talent and 5%graft- JB

As a blogger you find that your voice comes first and building your audience should be your second priority. Be true to your voice. JB

Don’t be too critical of yourself: read and write but keep moving forward. JO’R

Learn to protect your writing time to the death. Men have historically always been able to do it, but women need to get on board with the idea. LM

It’s important to listen to yourself. Allow yourself time to think when writing. LM

You can always get better at it. Try new things: a writing group can be an excellent tool and a very supportive way to write. LC

Theory of blogging: your best stuff will always be scribbled in two minutes whilst your kids are on the potty. JB

Recommended reading: How to Write a Damn Good Novel, Stephen King’s On Writing

Techniques: 1) sit on a chair and root yourself to the earth, Start writing at the point you feel connected to the earth. 2) Gather in everything you know about everything, and start writing form that point. JO’R

Have an office with no internet: it’s too big a distraction. LC

Flip your perspective: try writing from the point of view of a man, a piece of furniture, a child. LC

Read what you have written as if you are the reader and not the writer. It’s important to see that the two are exclusive. LM


Katie Piper: @katiepiper_, @KPFoundation

If you believe, you will survive.

Use positivity to help you get through anything.

The human spirit is all we have….that’s what radiates true beauty…. my spirit and my soul are completely untouchable. They are  mine.

A positive reaction helped me to be comfortable with this new me: the new skin I was in

Like any bereavement, you begin to cope, and look back fondly [of her old face]

Working at a charity restores your faith in society

Don’t use the word victim: only ever survivor. Those who don’t scar, die. Survivors wear scars, and I am a survivor.

I love my scars: they saved my life.


Baroness Susan Greenfield: are we addicted to the internet?

Demonised as someone who says that computers rot the brain, but this is not the case. Technology is delivering more leisure time than ever before in history.

1. Environment is key. Human brain has developed exquisitely to adapt to it’s environment. It has plasticity.

An experiment in which some people were taught piano exercises for a week, some were told to think they were and others just sat at a piano demonstrated that the suggestion of playing the piano is more important than the practical application. A thought thus has a physical basis.

“Thinking is movement confined to the brain”

“Every thought has a temporal sequence”

2. 21st Century is unprecedented. The printed press was rooted in 3d but the Cyber world is not. There is an erosion of childhood because the pressures of modern life are unremitting. As such the Cyber experience is the best way of developing the brain.

3. Brains- due to their plasticity- will be changing in corresponding ways to adapt to the Cyber world. The question of Cyber interaction is whether it is meaningless or meaningful.


When you first meet someone, their words have a 10% impact, their body language 55% and their voice 35%, suggesting that physical connections are important for a developing brain. If children are too rooted in the cyber world, they lack empathy. “When in the Cyber World, we are all autistic”

Social networks actually reinforce questions about identity. It’s very hard to build a full picture of a real person if you have only met online.

Reference the thinking is movement quotation: characters in books have a back story, a history that helps you build connections with them so that you actively like or dislike them. This is not true of computer games: the characters are set and you give little thought to their history whilst you act out their future.

Evidence shows that the area of the brain linked with addiction is also enlarged with sustained gaming activity, suggesting that online gaming is addictive. Likewise, the increased in prescriptions for Ritalin-based drugs since 1994 suggest there is a connection between attentional issues and video gaming.

This was an utterly compelling talk and I found Baroness Greenfield to be a fascinating and inspirational person. I would have loved to spend a longer time listening to her thoughts.

Go on! You know you want to tell me what you think!