Today we have the lovely Carly from the blog Tea and Cakes! ❤
1. Give us the history of you.
My name is Carly, I’m 25 and would love to have curly hair. I’m one of six children, four of which are boys. I live in a small town in Suffolk and work as a Teaching Assistant, which I adore. I was recently accepted onto a PGCE course, and so from September will be training to be a Teacher, eek! I blog at Tea and Cakes 🙂
2. When did you start blogging? Was this your first blog?
I started Tea and Cakes at the beginning of 2015. It is essentially a Lifestyle blog, but I made it for myself. Because of this, I only blogged as and when I wanted, or had time, and so posts were sparse. However, recently, I’ve been really enjoying my blogging journey and trying to blog more consistently. It’s still for myself, but I’m really enjoying the frequency of it and I’m much more committed. A few years ago I ran a book blog, it was doing well and I was consistent etc. But I found reading for the sole purpose of reviewing made reading feel like a chore, and I love books too much to feel like that. Also, I started Uni so time was definitely an issue! So I gave up on that, but missed the blogging world, so Tea and Cakes was made 🙂
3. What made you start blogging?
I enjoyed it the first time around, I started my book blog to attempt to spread the word about the books I love. I knew this time, though, that I wanted to blog about more. I wanted to write about places and events and recipes. At the time, I wasn’t aware that lifestyle blogs were a thing, so I browsed around lots of blogs with various content and decided that was what I wanted Tea and Cakes to be like.
4. How did you come up with your blog name?
With great difficulty! Seriously. how hard is it to choose a blog name you won’t get bored with?! Initially, I wanted something witty, like a play on my name, but couldn’t think of anything! So decided to just go with things I like 🙂
5. How long were you running your blog before you started getting many followers?
I’m actually still in the early stages of not many followers. But of the few I have, I am very grateful! 🙂
6. Walk me through the process that you went through to get your blog to where it is today…
First, I read lots and lots of other people’s blogs of a similar style. I looked through their content and the kinds of things they posted about. I’m a keen baker, so I looked at how people presented their recipes and cooking, I looked at personal posts etc. Then I began the foundations, I bought an affordable blog design, set up emails, links and all that other stuff and the started posting. Though at the time I didn’t realise how busy I was about to become, so I didn’t post regularly. But a few weeks ago, I figured I have the time now, so I tried again. I just redesigned Tea and Cakes and wrote some posts, scheduled, joined in blogger chats on Twitter and started regularly reading blogs I enjoy. Tea and Cakes is now at a place that I’m genuinely happy with.
7. How many books do you read in a month?
At the moment, I’m trying to read 4 fiction books a month, minimum. That’s purely because I’m in my final term of University and I have a dissertation to write, on top of a seminar and another essay. So, a lot of my reading at the moment is University based. When it’s all finished and my final piece of work is handed in, it will likely increase to about 8. And that final hand in date is so close!
8. What book did you read most recently that you loved, and would recommend to everyone?
At the weekend, I finished Salt to the Sea by Ruta Sepetys and it was the best book I’ve read in ages! It’s now one of my favourite books. It is a YA historical fiction book that follows a group of young people as they travel through Germany, torn apart by WWII. It’s written from 4 different points-of-view, but that doesn’t stop you quickly connecting with the characters and their journey. The author did not hold back on the gruesome descriptions, or reality of the situation. It was both soul-shattering and heart-lifting at the same time. It’s been almost a week and I still cannot stop thinking about it!
9. What are the top questions you get asked by your readers (and the answers)?
How do you promote your blog?
I’m not very good at this. I post links to Twitter, but that’s about it! It’s definitely something I need to improve on and I always ask if they have any advice for that.
How did you come up with the name for your blog?
Again, it’s very tricky! I chose to incorporate things I like into my title. Be sure it’s something you love, as it will sticking around for a while!
How do you get comments on you blog?
As of yet, I don’t get many! Just the odd one here and there, but it’s still early days! I recommend reading lots of other people’s blog posts and commenting on those. Not only do they sometimes comment back, but you get to read lots of other content and see pretty blogs and learn a few things along the way.
10. If a new blogger came up to you today, and you only had a few minutes to talk, what would be your best blogging tip?
Get yourself out there. Don’t be afraid to post what you want, blog for you. Follow other blogs, talk to other bloggers, join in blogger chats on Twitter. Not only do you get to make lots of lovely blogger friends, but it’s also fun!
11. Have you ever liked the movie more than the book? Be honest! (And tell us which one!)
I honestly can’t think of a time I did. Though The Hunger Games came very close. I really enjoyed the books, but I was Team Gale and got left heartbroken at the end! I really enjoyed the movie, especially the behind the scenes of the Games, and how they manipulate it. Seneca Crane was one of my favourites in the movie. Wes Bentley did such a great job with the role and that beard was amazing!
12. Are there any popular books you know you would never read (i.e. 50 Shades of Grey, tell us which one)?
Actually, 50 Shades is my one. I tried once, but just couldn’t do it. It’s not for me. And not because of the sex, that doesn’t bother me. I just couldn’t get into the story.
13. Any new blog features you are working on?
I’ve just had a redesign, so I am quite happy with it at the moment. Though I am open to suggestions!
14. What are 5 items you never leave home without?
My phone, my purse, a lipstick, my fitbit and hand gel.
15. Anything else you would like to add?
Thank you very much for having me! It’s been super fun and I hope you enjoy reading this. Please do visit me at Tea and Cakes, or you can find me on Twitter and Instagram 🙂
Thank you so much for stopping by our blog Carly!!!