Brian Bailey Preface to the Revised Edition

Offline Introductions

There were a number of great moments at SXSW this year, but two stand out above all others. During the conference, I had the privilege of meeting two of my favorite bloggers, Julie Leung and Kathy Sierra. I have such enormous respect for both of these ladies.

Julie is an incredible writer and thinker who brings a level of thoughtfullness and insight that is rare in the blogosphere. By all objective criteria, she also happens to be a beautiful, dedicated, homeschooling wife and mother. She spoke at a session on blogging and relationships and her joyful spirit was inspiring throughout. Plus, she wore a flower skirt to SXSW - how can you not love that?

Kathy had a session all to herself on Creating Passionate Users. She speaks as well as she writes, which can be said of very few bloggers. Her session was fast-paced, entertaining, provocative and packed with information - it was the only one in the four days where I took pages of notes and still felt like I missed a lot.

It wasn't until the last day that I ran into Kathy and had the chance to meet her. I told her that she consistently produces more high-quality, worthwhile contently than anyone else I know. If there was ever a blog I would consider paying for, it's Creating Passionate Users. Her posts get read, re-read, printed out, and talked about again and again. As if to prove my point, she left SXSW and quickly wrote two incredible posts. The good news is we'll be able to buy her book in the near future. By coincidence, Kathy is also kind, beautiful, and a great mom (of a teenager, no less), but I promise not to use these criteria to evaluate every female I happen to mention.

We also talked about the most recent Head First book, a series from O'Reilly she's involved with. I set Head First HTML & CSS in front of Ben two months ago and he has absolutely loved it. The books are incredible, no matter what your age.

Both Julie and Kathy could not have been more gracious. I can't wait to see how they use their immense talent next.