Planet Blog is fascinating. Curious, interesting, compassionate, and generous human beings populate Planet Blog. Winifred M. Reilly knows something about human beings since she is the author of the blog Speaking of Marriage. She was kind enough to nominate my blog for the Liebster Award. For the funny record I was not seeking advice from her expertise – I am happily married! Yet anything related to relationships interests me. Go ahead and check out Winifred’s professional, practical and inspirational posts to improve rocky relationships or maintain healthy bonds.
When I moved from France to the States, I immediately regretted one of my college decisions. Why did I give up on English in favor of German?
Today, though, my German comes in handy.
Liebster comes from the German verb Lieben, which means to love. Liebster is the superlative form of the adjective lieb, which means kind, likeable, lovely. As a noun liebster also means sweetheart and boyfriend. Ah the complexities of the German language!
As I understand it, the Liebster Award is like a little gift from one blogger to another:
“Thanks for your blog. I like it and I’d like other bloggers to check out what you are doing.”
As part of accepting this nice little gift, I am asked to nominate five bloggers. Tough choice!
Too many blogs, too little time!
Yet these five bloggers inform me, inspire me, speak to me, touch me, and make me smile. So in no specific order, here are my nominees:
Stella Tarakson Author Children and Young Adults
Mona Alvarado Frazier Exploring all Things Chingona from Authors to Zen
Claire Duffy The Grass is Dancing
Jennifer Chow Asian-American Fiction with a Geriatric Twist
Uncle Spike Uncle Spike’s Adventures
I am also asked to answer Winifred’s questions about myself as a blogger so that my readers can discover a bit more about me.
1. When did you start blogging?
I clicked ‘Publish” for the first time on February 8, 2010. Yeah, it has been a while. I started on Blogspot and then as a true immigrant moved to WordPress much more recenlty.
2. What one thing have you learned or experienced as a blogger that surprised you?
How kind most people are. Too often the world is depicted as violent, egoist and greedy. But through people’s blogs I feel a lot of human compassion. At least through the blogs I enjoy.
3. What advice do you have to bloggers who are just starting out?
Regardless of the topic of your blog, find what is special about you. Since every human being is unique, there is room for everyone. However, finding this uniqueness is not always immediate. Thankfully a blog is like people. It evolves, post after post, so there is always the possibility for adjustment. Just Do It!
4. How often do you post and why?
I don’t have a rigid posting schedule but the average is three to four times a week. Since I post in English and French, I alternate. My posts are never a translation. I make them unique. I started a blog for the discipline. Initially my blog was a little bit like a modern diary. When I noticed that I had readers, I felt necessary to post regularly. When we have friends we spend time with them to keep the relationship rich and flowing. I respect the people who sign up to follow my blog or like one of my posts and my regular writing posts are little thank you’s from me to them.
5. Many writers began writing when they were very young. Others came to it later, because they had a story to tell. When did you start writing?
Very young. But in French. I wrote a short novel for my sister who didn’t like to read. I figured she would love my story. She did! In middle school one of my pieces was published in a local newspaper. I was hooked.
6. When is your favorite writing time?
If I had a pick it would be early morning. But most days I can’t, so I write whenever possible.
7. What sorts of blogs do you read?
I like blogs about writing, reading, travels, and relationships. I like bloggers who live away from their native country or bloggers who embrace their heritage as a vehicle for their blog. I also admire artists, photographers, and crafty people. I’m a visual person, but I’m not talented in this field so when I visit their blogs I am in awe with what these people create.
8. What one key message do you want your readers to take away from your blog?
Living far from one’s homeland is never 100% easy, and assimilation to the new country is necessary to get a sense of place. To me this assimilation is impossible without the acquisition of the language, but no need to sever ties with the motherland. Mixing languages and cultures is sometimes embarrassing but more than often funny and always enriching.
9. What was the last book you read?
I almost always read by twos. One book written for grown-ups and one for children or YA.
Ian McEwan is one of my favorite writers for adult literature and I have read each of his books except Enduring Love, which I just finished. As always, I admire his exceptional writing and story telling skills.
In the YA category, I just read Please Ignore Vera Dietz by A.S. King. I absolutely loved it and highly recommend this unusual novel.
10. Do you think you’ve learned more from your successes or from your failures?
Definitely more from my failures, although it would be really hard to never have a little bit of success once in a while. But I think that more than from success or failure I’ve learned from discipline. I think that sticking to something we want to accomplish, even small things, is good for us, human beings. It gives us a purpose and a focus.
11. Share one thing that’s at the top of your bucket list.
Only one? My bucket list is bottomless. But since I only have one choice I will pick a week (can I get two?) with my husband. I would love to go with him to a place where none of us has ever been.
P.S. A couple of other nice things about the Liebster Award:
You don’t need to dress up for a fancy reception – although a French woman rarely says no to a new dress and a party.
You are given a chance to reach a larger audience and to aknowledge a blogger you like.