Tag Archives: Q&A

You Asked, I Answered – Part 3

This is the continuation of the Q&A with me. If you’d like to check out parts 1 and 2, you can do so here and here.

Melissa asks:

I completely agree that the person behind the blog is what really makes it click (or not click) with each reader. I’m curious, because of your “strange unbringing” do you feel drawn to books that deal with similar situations or do you try to avoid them?

I don’t think I am drawn to them, but I can certainly relate to them and when other bloggers can’t read a book because it’s just too depressing, I tend to not have any problems with it. What I do end up having problems with is if the story is not believable or the characters are not written in a realistic way. I tend to feel very strongly about this when it comes to books about dysfunctional families because I know what it was like to be in a family like that and the unrealistic parts stick out for me, whereas they may not for another reader.

Lisa asks:

So I know you like musicals. What’s your favorite?

I do love musicals!! The Boy did several musicals and each time he did them, I’d buy the soundtrack and sing those songs for months. I loved Wicked when it came to town but my fave would be Annie. I just love that spunky kid and her dog. The Sound of Music is right up there too.

Softdrink asks:

Have you ever travelled outside of CA, and if so, where?

Some cities I’ve visited: Chicago, New York, Salt Lake, Las Vegas, Denver, Boulder parts of Oregon including (Lake Oswego, Portland, Astoria, Beaverton, Forest Grove, Hillsboro, Tillamook, Tualatin), Washington, DC, Seattle, Bellevue, Mercer Island,  and Orlando.

Staci asks:

Do you secretly read books that you are too embarrassed to post about?

Every now and then I read popular fiction and I tend to not want to post reviews of those books. However, sometimes I have and then I always wonder why I even bothered so I created a separate tab at the top of my blog just to list the books I’ve read. That way I can still keep track of them but not feel obligated to review them.

Erica asks:

I love knowing the answer to this question about people–how did you meet your husband?

I already answered the question in this post, but the corny line he used on me was, “It’s raining out, wouldn’t it be nice to start a fire and watch a movie?” The thing was, I was at work so no, I wouldn’t be starting a fire unless it was in the fireproof vault and no, I won’t be watching a movie unless you get your jollies from watching surveillance tapes (worked in a bank). To this day, we still laugh over it.

Bonnie asks:

Do you have family and friends reading your blog and does that affect what you blog about?

I have family members who know about my blog, but I don’t think they read it. They might since the posts are published on Facebook too but they’ve never commented or said anything to me about it. I know that some “in real life” friends do read it, because they’ve posted comments before. Does it change how I post? Not really, but there was one time I said something about work and didn’t know that a colleague was a subscriber. Hello! Awkward!

Lakeshia asks:

I’m an avid reader myself and for awhile I’ve been interested in starting a book blog. How did you go about it and also how do you promote it so that people will come to your site?

I started my blog without doing any research first. I created it through Blogger for free and then fought with it for a year trying to get it to do what I wanted it to do. If you want to make it easier for yourself, I’d suggest looking at other blogs, deciding what you want it to do and how you want it to look and then seek out a publishing platform that offers similar features. In the end, I purchased my own domain and went with WordPress but you don’t have to purchase your own domain to have a good-looking, functional blog.

For months, I talked to myself. No traffic. The traffic came when I started to visit and comment on other blogs. Often, they would pay me a return visit and put me in their blog rolls. I did the same for them. It was slow going. It really picked up when I created a Facebook page and a Twitter account. I post all of my reviews on Library Thing, Goodreads, FB, Twitter and Barnes and Noble and lately I have been playing with StumbleUpon. I also host giveaways every now and then. People love to win things!

Content can drive traffic too. Having a regular posting schedule helps. For me though, I think a lot of the traffic I get comes from repeat visitors. I really like to know who I am interacting with so I will often respond to comments individually. I think readers like to know that their comments are being read, so they come back.

There’s so much more I could say but for me, this pretty much sums it up.

That’s it! I don’t think I forgot anyone, but if I did, let me know.

You Asked, I Answered – Part 2

This is the continuation of the Q&A with me. If you’d like to read part one, you can do so here.

Florinda asks:

Have you ever lived anywhere other than California? And if you haven’t, would you want to, and where?

In part one of this series, I mentioned that I lived in Manhattan for a very short time. I lived there from birth until the age of two and then came to California. I haven’t lived anywhere else, but I would love to live in Oregon. Preferably, Lake Oswego. I visited once and just loved it there.

Patty asks:

I feel as though I know so much about you…well…just the bits you have shared…you seem to be normal, like to cook are reasonably well adjusted…and I love that you work at a university…ok…what was your major in college…your specialty so to speak…and how do you get such amazing books to review.

All through junior college I majored in Business so I continued with that when I got to the university. Once there, after taking hours and hours of accounting and economics, I thought about how nice it would be to study something in the arts. I changed my major to Film Studies with an emphasis in screenwriting and then completely psyched myself out and ending up getting a B.A. in Mass Communication.  It took me so long to get my degree that I never thought I’d ever step foot on college campus again so then what did I do? I got a job here.

As for the books that I review, I get them from all over. Initially, I got some from Library Thing’s Early Reviewer program. Later, when I had a bit more confidence I’d email publishers and ask them for review copies. Once they got to know me, they began to offer books to me. I also do a lot of tours and network with authors on FB. I only take books that I want to read anyway so it all works out.

Diane asks:

I am curious as to whether you have always lived in CA, and whether you have ever visited New England?

Since I already answered the first question (above) I will tackle the second. I’ve never visited New England but would love to.

Kay asks:

OK, I’ll ask a couple of questions that are a little more light – and I totally agree with you about blogs and “hearing” the blogger’s voice – I know my posts are much like my conversations – it’s how I talk.

First, I am also a Disney fan and I want to know what is your favorite ride at Disneyland? When we used to visit Disneyworld in past years, my daughter and I had a tradition of always beginning our vacation stay with a ride on Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride – then they took it away! We were crushed.

Also, what’s your favorite flavor of ice cream – Ben & Jerry’s if that floats your boat – any other kind if you are not a B&J lover.

I love Disney! I have so many favorite rides though but if I had to choose just one, I’d say Peter Pan. My favorite part of that ride is when you soar over the city. I love all of the twinkling lights. Mr. Toad is still here in California so you will have to come visit!

My fave flavor of ice cream is Häägan Dazs, Vanilla Swiss Almond. I’m simple. Creamy vanilla with almonds covered in dark chocolate. Yum. However, if Ben & Jerry’s is the ticket then it would be Cherry Garcia.

Wallace says:

I LOVE hearing about bloggers too (like you — it’s a lot of what draws me to the blog). I want to hear more about your childhood as well… it sounds fascinating. Also, how did you and your husband meet (gotta get a cute romantic story in there somewhere!)?

My childhood in a nutshell: Lived well. Lost everything. Mental illness in one parent. Alcoholism in the other. Baby sister to take care of. Ran around the streets of Hollywood. Saw some horrible things. Had dreams and wished hard. Got out. There is a ton of stuff in-between but that pretty much sums it up. The weird thing is that although that was a very difficult time, I was in HOLLYWOOD and saw that Hollywood sign every day. I fantasized about stuff all the time like becoming famous, etc. That part of my childhood was very much like any other kid. I think.

The story of how The Hub and I met is sort of cheesy. I was working at a bank at the time and he was a customer. He fed me some corny line that I totally fell for, and that was that! He was The One. LOL. He says it was because of all his money, but trust me…there wasn’t any money. Afterall, I knew his entire financial portfolio. He forgets that part.

Well, that’s it for this week. I’ll post part three sometime next week.  If you’d like to ask me something,  just leave me a comment below.