#275: How do you pick what blogs or books to read? What’s the one thing that will get you to pick up a book or click on a link every single time?
There isn’t just one thing. And quite frankly, I don’t think there ever will be one thing. When it comes to deciding which book to buy/read, there are a few factors that come into play – if it’s by an author I’ve read and enjoyed in the past, if it was recommended by a friend or even another Author I admire, if it carries an interesting blurb and of course, the design of the cover. For me, the cover of the book needs to be visually appealing for me to show the first bit of interest.
When it comes to which blogs to read, I guess I follow a similar principle – if it is by a blogger whose posts I regularly enjoy reading, if it has a catchy/intriguing post title and if they have used images/videos within them.
#216: Anachronism (noun): an error in chronology; a person or thing that’s chronologically out of place. Write a story in which a per- son or thing is out of place, or recount a time when you felt out of place.
Apologies for the delay in today’s post – it was press deadline day at the mag, so had been swamped with proofreading from cover to cover. Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely love doing it – I’d actually go as far as saying it’s one of the best parts of my job! I just didn’t have a minute to myself during the day, and I’m now super tired to think of something remotely interesting that is chronologically out of place… both fictionally or reality wise.
The only time that springs to mind (which is surprising, considering how much my brain has had to do today), is when I was asked to interview famous author, Anthony Horowitz, for his last book in his Power of Five series, Oblivion. I’d never read the four previous books but managed to pick up the storyline relatively easy – I remember that Anthony himself was impressed with how much I’d managed to read in the five days I’d had the book. I was literally reading it at every opportunity I had – whilst drying my hair, eating meals, commuting; I was determined! (FYI – it was approx 700 pages long and I’d roughly managed 500). After interviewing him, completing the book and attending the epic book launch at The Ivy Club Loft (oh yeah… very swish with its glass elevator!), I wanted to read the other four. So far, I have only managed to read the first one but it was still epic and luckily, I’d forgotten the ending of the last book because I’d read others in between in order to partially cloud my memory. Win win!
#209: Your life without a computer: what does it look like?
Incredibly boring! I’m assuming that this prompt is referring to the majority of electronic devices that can access the internet though. At work I’m always on my Mac and then at home, I’m pretty much stuck to my iPad 24/7… especially now since I’ve just signed up to Netflix! Gah! I had a crummy old laptop (literally bought back in ’08/09!) before I won the iPad a couple of years ago, so I use it for emails, blogging, video chatting with family, catching up with TV and researching in order to successfully plan and organise social events. I don’t think there has been a day where I haven’t used it… aside from when on holiday abroad of course!
On the flip side, it would allow me to spend more time reading the insane amount of books I have crammed on my bookshelf, spend time in the garden watching the wildlife as opposed to a screen, spend more time with friends and family actually face-to-face, and finally redecorate my room, which has been on my to do list for years!
#190: Who is the one person you hope isn’t reading your blog? Why?
I can’t think of a single person that I would want to hide my blog from. I don’t particularly write it for anyone other than myself and at the same time, I don’t exactly ram it down peoples throats, pestering them to read it.
#170: Often, our blogs have tag lines. But what if humans did, too? What would your tagline be?
Well considering most of my social media tag lines read… “Works at National Geographic Kids Mag. Loves reading, travelling, writing, music, mexican food & all things fascinating!”… I guess I’d write something similar. The less interesting things I’d consider adding include: hardworking, highly passionate when it comes to succeeding, overly organised, consistent, efficient, time conscious (as I always arrive half an hour early for everything!) etc etc and the more typical things would include: friendly, up for a laugh, loyal, confidential etc etc.
The more interesting thing would be to find out the tag lines other people would give you…
#167: Tell us about the last book you read (Why did you choose it? Would you recommend it?).
I can’t remember specifically which book I read last, since I’m always reading, but the book I am currently reading is Jenny Colgan’s Little Beach Street Bakery. It was given to me for my birthday as I’m a huge fan of Sophie Kinsella‘s work and this one was recommended by her. So technically, I didn’t choose it… *cliche alert* it chose me!
Jenny has a different writing style to Sophie, so it did take me a little while to get into it. Although, as with all of my books, if I’ve started reading it… I have to finish it! That’s the rule with me. I’m now half way through and absolutely love it! The story follows a young woman, Polly, who faces complete upheaval in her life, so decides that the best thing to do is up sticks and move to quite a remote island. I always wonder – why do people think that moving locations would make them feel less lonely?! That said, this story reveals just how strong people can be when they really put their mind to it. Maybe location moves are a good thing after all?
I would recommend this book as it is a really sweet story and, to the right reader, could be quite empowering!
#166: Safe inside, toasty warm, while water pitter-patters on the roof…describe your perfect, rainy afternoon.
Well, firstly, I’d be in my cosiest pair of pyjamas, with a fluffy dressing gown and my monkey slippers. If it’s during the day, I’d be in my room, sat on my Olympic bean bag (it was part of the London 2012 Olympic furniture and was sold off after the games had finished!) reading my most recent book. I’d probably also have a delicious hot mug of chocolate Ovaltine (for those outside the UK, it’s a malted milk drink with a hint of chocolate… malted milk biscuits are my favourite and who doesn’t love chocolate?!). However, if it was late afternoon/evening, I would probably still be in my room but would be under my cosy covers, watching Disney films… or some home video DVDs, to see the relatives we’ve sadly lost, again. I do love rainy days!
#49: Many of us think of our lives as boringly normal, while others live the high life. Take a step back, and take a look at your life as an outsider might. Now, tell us at least six unique, exciting, or just plain odd things about yourself.
1. I have an unhealthy relationship with being organised. I can’t stand bad planning so I will always make sure that if I have any say or control in something, I will ensure that everything has been thought of and meticulously planned.
2. My love for reading and writing. If I’m not found writing my blog posts, you’ll find me reading. Whether it be a book, an email or various news stories – I’m forever learning through reading!
3. The world really is my oyster. Working for a kids magazine, I’ve been able to gain experience in being the Editorial Assistant, Marketing Assistant, Events Manager and the Manager of NG Kids Alive all at once! I hadn’t quite realised just how good I am at multi-tasking, so it’s certainly given me a confidence boost and shown me that if I put my mind to it, I can do anything.
4. My thirst for knowledge. I always want to learn more about everything. As an example, on the weekend that’s just gone, I was managing the company’s stand at The Telegraph’s Outdoor Travel and Adventure Show at the ExCeL in London and Nick Spellman the AnimalMan joined us. I was forever asking him about his animals as I just wanted to know as much as I possibly could.
5. My slight obsession with watching The Big Bang Theory. I couldn’t write six things without including this one! I’ll happily watch seasons 1-6 back to back as they’re always so funny no matter how many times I’ve seen them. Plus they’re only 25 or so minutes long, so can be playing in the background so to speak whilst completing other tasks.
6. Finally, I guess an outsider would comment on my close knit family. I know it’s not exactly unique, exciting or odd but I’ve always known how lucky I was to have a close and supportive family.
#34: A genie has granted your wish to build your perfect space for reading and writing. What’s it like?
The first thing that came to mind, was a room full of cosy beanbags and cushions! Thinking about it a little more, it’s maybe not the most practical of writing environments. Although, since it’s going to be my perfect space, one side of the room could be for my reading time, covered in cosy (yet posture appropriate) bean bags, soft blankets and of course some sort of book holder device so that I could read for hours without my arms aching! On the other side of the room would be a spacious, white vintage desk, with enough storage space to house everything I could possibly need as well as a secret compartment that hid my mac (I don’t have one, but hopefully the genie would be kind enough to provide one!) out of sight. It would also have a vase full of my favourite flowers, multi-coloured gerberas and forget me nots, sitting on the right side of the desk and I would be looking out of a large window, either at a countryside scene or a hustle & bustle city (I haven’t quite decided which I’d prefer). I’d be seated in a sturdy, soft leather armchair, which I could sink into (something similar to the ones seen in Disney’s Beauty and the Beast – tall, enclosing, generally cosy), allowing my mind to work in comfort. The walls would be painted in duck egg blue and to compliment this, I would have white lace accents added to various pieces of furniture, i.e. lamp shades, curtains/blinds etc. I would also soundproof the walls, so that any drummer/guitar/heavy metal addicted neighbours can play until their hearts content, whilst I can concentrate on my true passions – reading and writing!
I hope I actually meet a genie someday … I now want this room!