It’s Friday and here on my blog, every Friday is Featured Blogger Friday. Today’s featured blogger is Catriona Hoy. Welcome, Cat.
Firstly, why do you blog?
One of my writing resolutions for this year was to join the 21st century and commit to blogging. I had previously set up a blog but found that confronted by that empty page I couldn’t think of anything to say that anyone would be remotely interested in. So although I had a blog, there wasn’t really anything there. Until one day I had a run in with the school principal at the school where my children went in the UK when they banned sunscreen in the school. Well, as an Australian I then had plenty to say lol! So my first real blog was very naughty but the school did eventually change their policy the next year, after we had returned to Australia. I featured on nationwide tv and BBC radio during my campaign and my children were thoroughly embarassed…
Now I blog because as writers, publicity and having a public profile are so important. I’m still struggling with Twitter and I have two Facebooks, my one for friends and a public page. As I blogged however, I realised that the blogging world was much bigger than I imagined and I’ve met some great new writers and interesting people.
What do you blog about?
Mostly I blog about my writing, or things that are happening to me. I’m not a regular blogger and tend to be sporadic. There are some fantastic blogs for writers out there such as your own Sally and Dee White’s. This week I blogged about the demise of my first book, as the rights have just reverted to me. It’s the first time it has happened to me and made me feel a little sad that it will no longer be available.
Who is your target readership?
Hmm, now that’s a good question and one that I haven’t quite answered for myself yet. I guess my target readership is anyone who is interested in children’s picture books as that is mainly what I write. I don’t think any of my students read it, which is good, as I like to keep my lives kind of separate which is sometimes hard.
How often do you blog?
A bit like exercising….not as often as I’l like, or probably should. In fits and bursts. As I’m a high school teacher, I have to fit my writing around other commitments and at times like this, when there are mid year exams and reports to write, other things have to take a bit of a back seat. Like with exercising, I feel guilty but I also told myself this was my year for not feeling guilty but I’m failing miserably at that lol.
How much time do you devote to blogging?
Hmm, see answer to the last question. There are times when I don’t keep up with emails and some of the groups I belong to. It depends how much spare time I have.
Do you have a favourite blog post?
I’d be lying if I said I did. I check out the blogs of my friends when I have time or when they send me links to other blogs.
What do you see as the benefits of blogging?
Writing is so much about networking these days and making contacts is important. But it’s also nice to meet new people and learn about their writing journey. Writing can be quite isolating and other writers have similar experiences and I have such huge resources to draw on. Sometimes when you meet people finally face to face they feel like old friends.
What blogging platform do you use and why?
I use Blogger…why? I find it simple to use. I think WordPress has more features but like my gas and electricity…I need to be motivated to change.
Do you have a favourite blog to visit (other than your own)?
I visit many of my writing friends in Australia but also this one http://notesfromtheslushpile.blogspot.com/ . Candy Gourlay is a dynamic member of the SCBWI in the UK and we met at the SCBWI conference in Bologna in 2008. She has some fantastic advice on blogging and using the internet as a tool. I just wish I had time to follow it all.
Lastly, when you are not blogging, what else do you do?
I’d like to say writing! But probably I’m marking essays, or tests or preparing class notes. Perhaps I’m hanging up the washing or making dinner. Maybe I’m worrying about whether I’ve been a good mother and the fact that I forgot my sushi duty at my daughter’s primary school. Sometimes I do visits to schools and libraries to promote my books or just to keep in touch with how kids think.
Thanks for dropping in.
Thanks for having me Sally. I am always amazed at the energy you put into everything you do and your writing is wonderful. When I grow up I want to be just like you!
Awww, thanks Cat. You can visit Catriona’s blog here.