Category Archives: Awards

Ich liebe this award!

Firstly, my apologies to Melissa from Confessions of a fancy nerd, who nominated me for this award back in May so this response is well overdue!

So, I would like to accept this award now, and fulfill some of the rules (if you’ve been here before you’ll know my thoughts on ‘the rules’) so here goes:

11 random facts about me:

Well, I posted seven here and three here so you just need one more, right…

I once won a children’s poetry competition run by a Russian newspaper. I was 17 and the competition was aimed at children under 10. It was about a pea. I can barely speak any Russian now (I was studying for an A-level at the time).

My answer’s to Melissa’s 11 questions:

What is the last classic novel you’ve read?
Rebecca (yes, only recently!)

What is your best accomplishment so far?
Professional: Achieving my NLP Master Practitioner certification and receiving positive feedback from coaching clients. I was going to say ‘my son,’ but that’s not really my ‘accomplishment’!

Sweet or savoury?
Both (think Pretzel Flipz or honey roasted chilli peanuts… Yum)

Who is your favourite artist/singer?
My sister. Obviously.

Which country have you always wanted to go to?
So many…! I’d love to visit them all in my lifetime, if possible.

What is your favourite book?
All my Friends are Superheroes.

What inspires your blog posts?
Writing. People. Poetry (see what I did there?). Life.

How do you gather data to use on your blog?
I don’t, really. I have used surveymonkey once for this post but other than that I ‘research’ online or ask around.

What’s your favourite social media tool?
Twitter.

Cat or dog person?
Cat.

I am supposed to ask 11 questions of those I nominate but instead I’m just asking five. I really want to know the answers to these questions if I have nominated you but a comment below is just fine if you don’t want to formally accept on your blog!

  1. What motivates you to write?
  2. What’s the scariest thing you’ve ever done?
  3. What’s the best advice (about writing, or life in general) you’ve ever received?
  4. How would you like to be remembered?
  5. What’s your favourite line (this can be from a poem, a book, or it could be a quote you like)?

This award is supposed to be passed on to new blogs (or those with less than 200 followers, as I don’t think I can’t count mine as ‘new’ now!) that are worth reading. The ‘rules’ state 11 bloggers but as with previous awards, I don’t want to simply nominate 11 random blogs but just three of those I actually read (quality, not quantity) and would like to recommend (again, in some cases). They are:

Miriam Drori – Miriam writes over at An’ de walls came tumbling down* about social anxiety, writing and life in Israel. I met Miriam for the first time last month and she is just as lovely as I had imagined from her writing. I look forward to one day reading her memoirs!

Alice Fenner – Alice rarely blogs but when she does her words are well worth waiting for. Go and read some of her poems now, you’ll see what I mean.

Natalie Cherry – Natalie is a talented young writer who recently shared her writing journey as a guest post here at Honest Speaks. Natalie is just 17 so I look forward to seeing more of her work as she continues on this journey.

liebster

*I suspect Miriam has more than 200 followers but the number isn’t listed on her blog (or I couldn’t find it if it is) and I wanted to nominate her for this award as I really enjoy her blog posts and expect you will too!

A peaceful award (with a lovely rule)!

I recently received this beautiful award from the lovely Summer over at Inner Peace. I was going to write an acceptance blog but I think Summer describes the award best in her own words…

Peace is a free choice, this Award for you to...

I would like to pass this award onto all of you, dear readers, whether you’re a follower who often comments (hello Alice, Christy, Miriam and Subhan), an occasional reader who rarely/never comments (Hi El!), a ‘lurker,’ who reads fairly regularly but doesn’t follow, or someone who never reads blogs but just stumbled upon my page while searching for a picture of a ‘woman running’ (my most popular search term!)…  And anything in between. Thank you all for reading. If you have a blog yourself, feel free to share this award on your page. As Summer says, the only ‘rule’ is that if you pass it on, do so with kind words. So, here are yours, courtesy of Matt Haig (quote taken from The Humans):

“You are more than the sum of your particles. And that is quite a sum.”

and some from me (taken from an old blog post that I think was quite good. Sort of):

“You’re amazing and other people being amazing doesn’t make you any less so. Celebrate their successes and don’t forget to celebrate your own. There is space for all of us to shine.”

Peace

What a lovely award!

One Lovely Blog award

First of all, a long overdue thank-you to Subhan Zein, who nominated me for this award last month. Subhan is an exceptionally gifted writer, which is all the more amazing given the fact that English is not his first language. If you have time, do pop over to Subhan’s blog and read some of his inspiring words.

Right, as always with these things, there are some ‘rules.’ I am supposed to:

  1. Visit and thank the blogger who nominated me (check)
  2. Acknowledge that blogger on my blog and link back (check)
  3. Share seven random things about myself (see below)
  4. Nominate seven or more blogs and notify them on their blogs (um..)
  5. Copy and paste the award on your blog somewhere (It’s in this post)

Ok. I posted seven random things about myself not so long ago when I accepted the Very Inspiring Blogger award, so I will just add three more to that (if you read the last seven, the numbers will make sense!), making up to a nice round ten. I will try to be more revealing this time:

  1. I still feel like I’m ‘playing’ at being grown-up. I take comfort from the fact that several people tell me they feel the same way (please don’t burst this bubble for me!)
  2.  I have a birthmark right under my right eye – where I used to put eyeliner back in the 80s (on the inside). It looks like the liner slipped. You’d have to look real close to see it though, I didn’t notice it myself until I started wearing make-up
  3.  I have three business ideas that I have so far been too cautious to do anything about. I don’t know what I’m afraid of – failure..? Or freedom?

Now, as for nominating seven blogs…. I’m not going to follow that rule this time. I go for quality over quantity in my blog reading so don’t have hundreds to choose from, and I want to make sure that a) I don’t nominate the same people all the time, which leads to b) I want these awards to mean something when I give them! Also, as the name of the award is ‘One lovely blog,’ I think I should nominate just that… So…

The One Lovely Blog I would like to nominate for this award is…

Alice Fenner

Alice doesn’t blog very often but I think that illustrates my earlier comment about preferring quality over quantity. She may not write much, but when she does it’s well worth the wait! If you would like to find out more about Alice, you could pop back to 2010, when I interviewed Alice for my Ordinary People series.* Do take a look at Alice’s stories and poems and if you like what you read, I urge you to subscribe by email to make sure you don’t miss a rare treat in your reader!

Alice – There’s no obligation to accept and if you do, feel free to interpret the ‘rules’ as loosely as I did – or even ignore them altogether! Congratulations!

*I will be running a series of ‘Ordinary People’ interviews again this year. If you would like to feature (or nominate someone to feature), please get in touch!

A Very Inspiring award

I owe a long overdue ‘Thank You!’ To Summer, of Grow your innerself, who nominated me for this award back in December. I didn’t respond at the time as one of the rules of acceptance is to nominate 15 other bloggers for this award. That’s a quite a lot, and I didn’t want to just list my favourite blogs but to include people who really do inspire me, for various reasons. Because of this, I only managed 10 – I hope that isn’t seen as cheating! The list is below and if I have nominated you I will  also send you a direct email/tweet/message (if i haven’t already) to let you know.

very-inspiring-blogger

The other rule of this award is to tell you seven things about myself… I talk about myself quite a lot already on this blog so I’m not sure anything will surprise you if you are a regular reader but here goes:

  1. I live in London, UK. Typically, I complain about the weather a lot but I am grateful for the seasons.
  2. I wish I could stop time so that I could get more writing done
  3. My last holiday was my honeymoon in 2010 (Malaysia). I miss travelling
  4. I have two middle names but I only ever use one as I don’t like the other
  5. When my sister sings I often cry (in a good way). Look out for her: https://www.facebook.com/elizabethajaomusic
  6. Someone once asked me if I could choose between music and silence. I couldn’t. I still can’t. I think I need both in order to create
  7. My favourite numbers are three and seven. Predictable, right?

And here are the winners (in my eyes!) – in no particular order – are:

http://petrakidd.com/

http://kellieelmore.com/

http://andewallscametumblindown.wordpress.com/

http://poeticparfait.com/

http://subhanzein.wordpress.com/

http://patcegan.wordpress.com/

http://charity-spring.org/

http://icingandcake.wordpress.com/

http://jfb57.wordpress.com/

http://mattmadeiro.com/

To all of you – thank you for the inspiration!

An award (for refusing to live in the real world)!

I am extremely flattered to have been nominated for this award, which is for literary and book-centred blogs and bloggers who read widely. I’m told that this award is usually given to writers who have published books but I’m assuming I’ve been nominated for other reasons! I was nominated by Jenny over at ‘Jenny the Wren.‘ Thanks Jenny!

After accepting this award, I have to list my five favourite books – explaining why they are my favourites – and nominate five other bloggers to receive this award.

I’m not very good at choosing favourites. You know that Quality Street advert that asks which one is your ‘favourite favourite?’ Well I still list five of those. And they’re just chocolates. These are books… So here are five top picks from a long list if ‘favourite favourites.’ All of these books link to amazon.com in case you want to find out more and add them to your wishlist!

Of Bees and Mist
Best described as a gothic fairytale for grown-ups, this book drew me into in its magical world from the first page and I could not put it down. Lent to me by a friend who ‘thought I might like it,’ it got me writing again after a dry spell. It had a huge influence on my writing at the time and I loved it so much my friend let me keep it (this does not happen often).

All my friends are superheroes
This book has been top of my ‘favourites’ list since I read it a couple of years ago. This novella is a beautiful little love story, which stays with you long after reading. Actually, I’ve called it a love story but it’s so much more than that. I re-read it often and get something new from it each time. Buy it, and see which ‘superhero’ you identify with. Then buy it for someone you love.

The Slap
I read this book while I was heavily pregnant with my son and it got me through several hospital visits, the early stages of labour and a further ten days in hospital after the birth. I’ve heard it’s since been made into a television  series but I’ve not seen it and I’m not sure I want to as I have such a strong visual representation of all the characters in my head. It’s the story of the reactions of a group of friends after one man slaps his friend’s child. As a new parent, it really made me think. If you’ve read this, tell me – whose side were you on?

The Book Thief
When I first heard that this book was narrated by ‘Death,’ I wasn’t so sure but I read the prologue and was immediately hooked. Who knew the Grim Reaper was so poetic? As with ‘Of Bees and Mist,’ I found the style of this book reflected in the poetry I wrote at the time.

The Five People You Meet in Heaven
Another simple little book that stays with you long after reading. A beautiful way of approaching the age of question of the meaning of life. Death, it turns out, is not the end. In fact, the book begins with the death of Eddie, whose story unfolds as you read and learn more about his life through the eyes of those he meets in heaven.

What’s your favourite favourite?

I would like to nominate the below bloggers (listed in no particular order) for this award. Please note that it’s not compulsory to accept! If you do accept, please post the award on your blog, list your five favourite books – including why they’re your favourites – and pass the award on.

Alice Fenner – I interviewed Alice back in 2010 as part of my ‘Ordinary People,’ series. Far from ordinary, Alice’s blog posts are beautifully written prose that make you rethink the way you look at the world.

Petra Kidd – Author of ‘The Eight of Swords‘ and its sequel, ‘The Putsi,’ Petra’s writing is so engaging I nearly missed my stop while reading on the tube! I urge you to download her books or at least pop by her blog.

Kellie Elmore – Author of ‘Magic in the Backyard,’ Kellie’s poetry paints a vivid picture of her past and is often somehow quietly reassuring. Kellie also hosts a great writing prompt, ‘Free Write Friday,’ on her blog.

Miriam Driori – Writer and Social Anxiety sufferer Miriam was also kind enough to take part in an Ordinary People interview. She writes with disarming honesty about living with Social Anxiety. She also writes about a wide range of other subjects, including everyday life in Israel. Miriam writes brilliant short stories, one of which you can read here.

Julia Skinner – founder of the 100WC project, I know Julia has been nominated for this award before but I couldn’t not nominate her! For services to child literacy and also for weekly inspiration via the 100WCGU challenge, providing the same opportunity to adults who still like to play with words.

There are many many more bloggers deserving of this award but as with the books, these are just five from my current list if favourite favourites!