Five Minutes With… @AprilMunday from A Writer’s Perspective #Blogging #FiveMinutesWith

Welcome to Five Minutes With… a new feature where I invite bloggers of all genres to tell us a little about themselves and their blogging journey.

April Munday (2)Today’s blogger is April Munday who blogs at A Writer’s Perspective.

Q1: When and why did you start blogging? Which platform do you use?

I started at the end of January 2015 and I use WordPress. I started blogging because I write romance novels set in the fourteenth century and do a lot of reading about what was going on then and how people lived. I thought other people might be interested in what I was finding out.

Q2: What topics/themes do you blog about? Do you ever deviate from that theme?

I write about any aspect of the fourteenth century which interests me or comes up as part of the research I do for my novels set in that period. This can be how people lived; the kind of buildings they lived in; what they ate; what was important to them; and what they did for entertainment.

Originally the blog covered the Regency period, as well, as I was intending to alternate Regency romances with ones set in the fourteenth century, but that meant that I was writing posts about the nineteenth century to coincide with the publication of a novel at the same time as I was writing and reading about the fourteenth century. This became so confusing that I had to stop.

Apart from publicising the releases of novels, I don’t write about anything else.

Q3: Which of your blog posts is your favourite and why do you like this one so much?

The Medieval Floor. It’s not a particularly good post, but it came out of visits to various medieval buildings over the years as well as television programmes I’ve watched about how people lived in the Middle Ages. I’ve visited many cathedrals and seen their medieval tiles and assumed that tiles and stones formed the flooring in all medieval buildings. Then, about ten years ago, I visited the Medieval Merchant’s House in Southampton and the floor in that building was just beaten earth, as it would have been in the fourteenth century. This raised all kinds of questions in my mind about how people really lived then. Wouldn’t the floor just disintegrate when people walked in out of the rain? Wouldn’t it make the house damp or dusty? Why wasn’t the floor covered with tiles or stone? The post is what I’ve found out about floors since then.

I’m still fascinated by medieval floors. When I went to Stokesay Castle in the summer I gasped out loud when I saw that there was a whole room whose floor was covered with medieval tiles. Sadly, the visitor can only see it through glass. As you might expect, floors and their coverings get a mention in most of my novels.

Q4: Do you have a top tip to share for any new bloggers that might be reading?

It’s the best advice that I was given when I started – be patient. It will take people a while to find you and to start commenting.

Q5: What’s your favourite social media platform?

Facebook. It’s the first one I joined and where I feel most comfortable. I’m in a few groups there for bloggers and authors which I enjoy.

Find out more about April by connecting with her via the links below:

Blog Link: A Writer’s Perspective

Facebook: April’s Facebook page

Twitter: April’s Twitter

Instagram: April’s Instagram

Pinterest: April’s Boards

Goodreads: April’s Author Page

Other: April’s Books

About April:

theheirstale-webApril Munday is the author of romances set in the fourteenth century. She lives in Hampshire, where many of her stories are set.  In her head she lives in the fourteenth century, but only in her head; she has learned far too much about life in the Middle Ages to want to live there in reality.  She is inspired by the remnants of the past which are part of her local landscape. Her latest series, The Soldiers of Fortune, is set after the Battle of Poitiers, which changes the lives of four brothers.

*** TICKETS on sale for the Annual Bloggers Bash Awards 2018 HERE ***

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Five Minutes With… @Rachael_Stray #Blogging #FiveMinutesWith

Welcome to Five Minutes With… a new feature where I invite bloggers of all genres to tell us a little about themselves and their blogging journey.

Today’s blogger is Rachael Stray.

Rachael Stray

Q1: When and why did you start blogging? Which platform do you use? 

I had been thinking of starting a blog for about 18 months but hadn’t had the time to really get something set up as I’d been a tad busy. I started two new jobs, got married, we sold our house, relocated back to the North East and we’re now buying our new home!

What finally gave me the kick up the bum was something I spotted on Twitter which got me really riled up. I pointed it out to a few people I know professionally on Twitter and was invited to write a guest blog post for a Public Relations website on the topic. I also wrote a couple of blog posts for my day job too.

After that I decided to stop putting it off and took the plunge to set up my own blog. I often get asked for advice in respect of my day job within the Public Relations world so some of my blog posts are aimed at helping others with knowledge I have gained.

I use WordPress to host my blog.

Q2: What topics/themes do you blog about? Do you ever deviate from that theme?

I don’t have a niche theme or particular topic that I focus on. I try to share my knowledge in the Public Relations field so some of my posts are more to do with my day job.

I try to write about what I hope other people similar to me would find interesting and helpful and sometimes also humorous! For me it’s a bit of a mixed bag so hopefully something for everyone!

Q3: Which of your blog posts is your favourite and why do you like this one so much?

I think the blog post I wrote in honour of my mam’s recent big birthday is my favourite. https://rachaelstray.blog/2017/10/01/some-heroes-wear-capes-others-are-step-parents/

It’s a thank you for how amazing she is but it’s also a message (I hope) for hope and encouragement to all the step-parents out there. I’ve received some lovely comments both on and outside of the blog post itself from other step-parents to say thank you which is lovely.

Q4: Do you have a top tip to share for any new bloggers that might be reading?

I think my top tip would be to take the plunge and just get started. My other tip would be to join Facebook groups and take part in the various blogger chats as the blogging community can be so supportive and there’s so much you can learn from others.

Q5: What’s your favourite social media platform?

This is a tough one. I use social media for my day job so I’m on various platforms for most of the day. I think it very much depends what you’re using it for as to which platform I prefer.

I don’t like the Facebook newsfeed of previous years as I don’t feel like I see the content I’d actually like to see thanks to the Facebook algorithms. So I find myself scrolling less and less through my newsfeed as it’s clogged up with promoted posts and posts from people I’m not actually that close to. However, I really enjoy the Facebook groups I’m a part of both for blogging and for work purposes which I find quite invaluable.

I really like Twitter. I’ve got two accounts and I manage one for work too so I’m on the platform every single day. I just think there’s so much you can do with Twitter and the feed is better than Facebook’s. At first I was sceptical that the increased character limit would have a negative impact on the Twitter feed but I think it’s great especially for tagging others in tweets and for Twitter chats so you can get more of your point across in a single tweet.

I’m getting back into Instagram and Pinterest as of late and I’m trying to get to grips with Tumblr, StumbleUpon and Flipboard too.

Blog Link: https://rachaelstray.blog/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/rachaelstrayblog/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/Rachael_Stray

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/rachys2011/

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.co.uk/rachaelstray/

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/rachael-stray-82945675/

I hope you enjoyed this feature. Be sure to check out Rachael’s blog. If you write a blog and would like to be considered for Five Minutes With… then please send me a message via the contact page.

*** TICKETS on sale for the Annual Bloggers Bash Awards 2018 HERE ***

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Five Minutes With… Global Housesitter @GlobalHousesit2 #Blogging #FiveMinutesWith

Welcome to Five Minutes With… a new feature where I invite bloggers of all genres to tell us a little about themselves and their blogging journey.

Today’s blogger is Suzanne, who blogs at Global Housesitter.

Suzanne

Q1: When and why did you start blogging? Which platform do you use? 

Initially, I started off with a private diary.  Which like many falls by the wayside when life gets in the way, and there are no motivating factors to write.  Then someone mentioned blogging.  With many attempts deleted along the way, with a lack of confidence in my ability to string a few sentences together let along 1000 words.  I did not publish anything for quite a while.  Then one day I did, and the rest is history!

Q2: What topics/themes do you blog about? Do you ever deviate from that theme?

As we are full-time housesitters and travel quite a few distance to do this lifestyle, most of my blog is about travel and of course the various communities, people and animals we encounter along the way.  Do I deviate, yes I do?  Though I feel this is a good thing, both for myself and my readers.  How?  An old saying comes to mind, “Variety is the spice of life”.  A bit of background on New Zealand and a small amount of my background.  I have a love of art and I am now incorporating more of this subject; artists and art we encounter in our travels plus artists that I know.

Q3: Which of your blog posts is your favourite and why do you like this one so much? 

My favourite blog post that is a hard one.  One of my more emotional ones was the one I wrote about my Nana.  https://globehousesitterx2.wordpress.com/2017/03/07/i-called-her-nana/  Why?  I think it is because it was such a personal one, which was in some ways hard to publish and on the other hand easy to write.  Plus it was a celebration of Women’s Day which always brings out me remembering the strong women that have or are in my life.

Q4: Do you have a top tip to share for any new bloggers that might be reading?

Be yourself, write what you are passionate about and the words will flow much more natural.  It is not about your blog; you need to participate in the blogging arena to receive feedback, and learn.  I emphasise the learning which is the one thing I enjoy with blogging, which is ongoing.  Plus the obvious of connecting with like-minded people.  Don’t feel pressured to like every person that connects with you.  Be sincere in your contribution, it will become evident if you are not.  Just enjoy the process of reading and acknowledging other blogs plus writing your own and pushing that publish button.  The rest will follow.

Q5: What’s your favourite social media platform?

I don’t have a favourite; I do use FB, Instagram and Twitter more than others.  This is one area I need to develop to the next level in the blogging arena.

Find out more about Global Housesitter by connecting with them via the links below:

Blog Link:https://globehousesitterx2.wordpress.com/

Facebook:https://www.facebook.com/globalhousesitterx2/

Twitter:https://twitter.com/Globalhousesit2

Instagram:https://www.instagram.com/globalhousesitterx2/

Pinterest:https://www.pinterest.nz/housesittersx2/pins/

I hope you enjoyed this feature. Be sure to check out Suzanne’s blog. If you write a blog and would like to be considered for Five Minutes With… then please send me a message via the contact page.

*** TICKETS on sale for the Annual Bloggers Bash Awards 2018 HERE ***

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Five Minutes With… My Daily Journal Online @ani81401 #Blogging #FiveMinutesWith

Welcome to Five Minutes With… a new feature where I invite bloggers of all genres to tell us a little about themselves and their blogging journey.

Today’s blogger is Anindya, who blogs at My Daily Journal Online.

AnindyaQ1: When and why did you start blogging? Which platform do you use?

I had a blog previously with WordPress.com last year. But for long I wanted to have a self-hosted blog which will give me greater control and choices to create the content I wanted to. And that’s why this blog came up earlier this year. I have always wanted to write and share whatever has been in my mind and about the things which interest me, music being one major thing in the list.

Q2: What topics/themes do you blog about? Do you ever deviate from that theme

I generally blog about music I love to listen and share, books I read, movies that keep me glued, inspirational and motivational aspects of life, and some travel diaries from my life…..generally I don’t deviate, but when I am inviting Guest posts, I give the creative freedom to the Guests, and never mind the deviations 😊

Q3: Which of your blog posts is your favourite and why do you like this one so much

Well, its difficult to pick out just one favourite post, but I will still say this one is about something which I think is very true not only from the blogging point of view, but also about life as a whole. This post brings out the universal phenomenon which I believe in very much, is, What you give is what you get. It’s awfully simple and true, you get back whatever you give…and if it’s love and goodness and happiness, you get back the same in manifold 😊

Q4: Do you have a top tip to share for any new bloggers that might be reading

Well, I am still working toward that position where I can possibly qualify to give any tips or advice, but still I will share with all of you is that, 1] write what your heart feels to express, not offending anyone, 2] write more and regularly, 3] show respect and love to the entire blogging world, as much as you can…..there’s no shortcut.

Q5: What’s your favourite social media platform?

Twitter…..love to connect, and more so from the blogging point of view.

Find out more about Anindya by connecting with him via the links below:

Blog Link: https://mydailyjournalonline.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/rakshitanindya

Twitter: https://twitter.com/ani81401

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/rakshitanindya/

Pinterest: https://in.pinterest.com/anindyar05/pins/

I hope you enjoyed this feature. Be sure to check out Anindya’s blog. If you write a blog and would like to be considered for Five Minutes With… then please send me a message via the contact page.

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Five Minutes With… Must Hike, Must Eat @snuffymusthike #Blogging #FiveMinutesWith

Welcome to Five Minutes With… a new feature where I invite bloggers of all genres to tell us a little about themselves and their blogging journey.

Today’s blogger is Shannon Cunningham who blogs at Must Hike Must Eat.

Shannon Must Hike Must EatQ1: When and why did you start blogging? Which platform do you use?

I write on WordPress and I started in January of 2016 when I found out I was going to be laid off from my job of 16 years.  It was a way for me to process that change and begin to look at other directions in my life.

Q2: What topics/themes do you blog about? Do you ever deviate from that theme?

Well, you can guess that I write about hiking (spending time outdoors) and eating (a Paleo diet) but my posts are not limited to that.  I write about traveling, restaurants that serve healthy food, mid-life parenting, my faith in God, social issues, book reviews, volunteering and just about anything that happens in my life!

Q3: Which of your blog posts is your favourite and why do you like this one so much?

Oh, I have several favorite posts but I think Definition of Courage will always be dear to my heart. I think it really sums up who I am and what I hope to accomplish with my blog.

Q4: Do you have a top tip to share for any new bloggers that might be reading?

Often we start blogging because we want write to express ourselves but it is important to remember that blogging is about community and connection, too.  Try and find yourself a writing community to join whether is be online or in your own circle; it can make all the difference!

Q5: What’s your favourite social media platform?

My favorite social media platform is Instagram, although I have more followers on Facebook.  It just has less clutter and feels more intimate.

Find out more about Shannon by connecting with her via the links below:

Blog Link: http://www.musthikemusteat.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/musthikemusteat/

Twitter:  https://twitter.com/snuffymusthike

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/musthikemusteat/

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/snuffymust/

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/pursuecourage/

I hope you enjoyed this feature. Be sure to check out Shannon’s blog. If you write a blog and would like to be considered for Five Minutes With… then please send me a message via the contact page.

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Daily Tasks to Improve Your Life #PersonalDevelopment

January Challenge: Daily Tasks to Improve Your Life

Daily TasksWhen I started blogging five years ago, it was to record a series of challenges I’d set myself as part of my New Year Resolutions. Over the years my blog has evolved to include posts on holistic health, wellbeing, mental health, family, blogging, and personal development. These are all topics I love to learn and talk about. My background as a holistic health practitioner and tutor sets me up perfectly to share my thoughts and lessons on these topics.

I was doing a bit of goal setting recently and thought about where I wanted my blog to go. With the success of my recent series How to Create a More Fulfilling Future (you can read the final post HERE). I thought it would be fun to return to my roots and share more challenge related posts.

I’ve worked out an entire year’s worth of challenges for you. Some are thought-provoking, and others are for a bit of fun. Daily Tasks to Improve Your Life is January’s challenge series. For the next four weeks I’ll be setting you, my blog readers, a challenge to do one thing every day to improve your life.

I’d love to know how you get on with this so feel free to record your challenge in the comments or share your thoughts on my Facebook page.

Here are the tasks to try for the next seven days:

Day 1 – Don’t Put Your Life on Hold.

If you’ve been putting things off, then today’s the day to take control. Think about which area of your life you want to make changes or move forward and work out a plan of action. Start working on it today.

Day 2 – Stop Moaning.

It’s the start of a brand new year, so I want you to forget about last year’s problems and concentrate on being positive. Leave all that negativity behind and embrace a new start. If there’s one issue that you’re struggling to leave behind, then I suggest you write it down and burn the piece of paper (safely!)

Day 3 – Be Flexible.

If you’ve done everything the same way but never achieved the results you hoped for then perhaps it’s time to make some changes. Think about how you can do something different to achieve your goals. Avoid trying to be perfect or set in your ways and be open to new ideas.

Day 4 – Be Grateful.

Think about everything you are grateful for today and write it down in a journal. Keeping a gratitude journal is a good habit to increase positivity and peace.

Day 5 – Set Goals.

It’s the perfect time of year to write a New Year Resolution list, but is that wise? Instead of a long list of maybes design a plan for this year, the next three years, or the next five years. What do you want to do, be, or have? Work on a plan of action to achieve your dreams.

Day 6 – Have Fun.

Dance, sing, and laugh. Today is all about enjoying yourself and letting go of the self-imposed restrictions of day to day life.

Day 7 – Love Yourself.

Write yourself a love letter saying all the things you like about who you are. It’s important to remember how important you are and learn to love and honour yourself with positive self-talk and self-care.

There you go. Seven-day challenge. I’ll post another seven challenges next Monday so be sure to check back and join in. Leave a comment in the section below and share how you got on, or if there was anything you struggled with.

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Five Minutes With… Diary of a Doting Mom @shyvish #Bloggers #FiveMinutesWith

Welcome to Five Minutes With… a new feature where I invite bloggers of all genres to tell us a little about themselves and their blogging journey.

Today’s blogger is Shailaja Vishwanath who blogs at Diary of a Doting Mom & The Moving Quill.Shailaja Vishwanath

Q1: When and why did you start blogging? Which platform do you use?

I started blogging in 2007, ten years ago on Blogger. I started my writing blog in 2014 on WordPress. Last year, 2016, I moved both my blogs to self-hosted WordPress.

Q2: What topics/themes do you blog about? Do you ever deviate from that theme?

I blog on parenting and blogging tips on one blog and creative writing and non-fiction essays on the other. I used to write about detailed blogging tips on my writing blog, but recently switched that to the parenting blog. I’ve rarely deviated from my theme on either blog. I knew my niche and was/am comfortable in it.

Q3: Which of your blog posts is your favourite and why do you like this one so much?

There are so many! But this one from my parenting blog is my favourite: A letter to my daughter

Q4: Do you have a top tip to share for any new bloggers that might be reading?

Find a topic you absolutely love to read about and write about. Don’t worry about numbers and stats. That will come with time. Write because you want to. Everything else will fall into place.

Q5: What’s your favourite social media platform?

I love Facebook and lately, I’ve fallen in love with Pinterest. Facebook lets me connect to bloggers on a personal level while Pinterest drives organic and quality traffic to my blog. It’s also a great space to learn more about blogging.

Find out more about Shailaja by connecting with her via the links below:

Blog Link: www.shailajav.com & www.shailajav.in

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/diaryofmom

Twitter: https://twitter.com/shyvish

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/shailajav/

Pinterest: https://in.pinterest.com/shyvish/

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/shailajav/

I hope you enjoyed this feature. If you write a blog and would like to be considered as a guest on the Five Minutes With… feature then please drop me a note via the Contact page.

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