The sun has got his hat on hip-hip-hip hooray. The sun has got his hat on, and he’s coming out today. That’s right, everyone. For the first time in a very long time, the big yellow orb in the sky has found its way back to Britain. To celebrate this momentous happening Dads Tech Hub has kindly nominated me for the Sunshine Blogger Award.
An award nomination? Ooh, how exciting! I KNOW! I cleared my diary, dry cleaned my kilt, watched Kate Winslet’s blubtastic Oscars speech, bought lots of furniture I could not afford and then… read the Sunshine Blogger Award small print and discovered that there is no red carpet, free fizz, swanky ceremony or global adulation. It’s actually a virtual gong that has been created by the blogging community to celebrate the stars of the industry.
If you think that this sounds like a contrived way to expand reach, swap followers and get backlinks, then you are 100% right. But it’s our industry and we make the rules, so neh-neh-neh-neh-neh. All of which brings me to the business end of proceedings. In order to keep up my end of the bargain, I need to:
- Answer the 11 questions Dads Tech Hub posed me
- Nominate 11 more bloggers
- Ask them 11 questions
Got all that? Great, then let’s begin with the queries DTH had for me…
Why did you start blogging?
For financial reasons. I’m a freelance writer, and over the last few years the fees newspapers and magazines have been offering have been getting lower and lower. It’s not a horrific situation, but it is only going one way, so it makes sense to try and write for myself rather than other people. Given my background and experience, an advice and entertainment website for parents seemed like a good option. It hasn’t paid off yet, but this time next year, Rodney. This time next year… (Note: to anyone who hasn’t seen Only Fools and Horses – I’m basically saying that I’ll be a millionaire pretty soon).
What is the best blogging tip you would give to someone new to blogging?
Being a great writer doesn’t make you a great blogger. And being a great blogger doesn’t make you a great writer.
If you could which element of blogging would you dedicate more time to?
Twitter – it seems like a platform where occupation/dedication gets rewarded.
What is the most random fact you know?
Boxing legend George Foreman called all five of his sons George.
Which film title best describes your personality?
Gone In 60 Seconds – I tend to flit from idea to idea or conversation to conversation pretty quickly.
What was the first Cassette tape/CD/MP3 that you ever purchased?
Always Take The Weather With You, by Crowded House. Useless extra information, I bought it in WH Smith in St Andrews, while visiting my grandparents.
Which children’s film completely scarred you?
I’m not sure, but I’m petrified of cats, so perhaps something with a moggy in it.
If you were a mad scientist, what experiment would you run, if money wasn’t an issue?
Father-Hood.co.uk. Yes, seriously. Trying to make it successful on a very limited budget is driving me mad, so it’d be nice to chuck £1000s behind it and see how big it could get.
If you could travel in time to your future or past self a message, what would it be?
“Yo, doofus – leave climbing over cars to the experts.” (When I was 20, I attempted this, slipped, and hit a wall, breaking both my wrists and taking out two of my teeth.)
If you could only have 1 piece of technology, what would it be?
Haribo or Jelly Babies?
Not even close. Haribo.
My starting XI
Now, it’s time to reveal the 11 legends, who I am handing the flaming torch on to. They are:
Three Time Daddy – Definitely take a look at his inventive and creative “Dad Wins” series
Polenta Bianca – Brings some scientific order to the madness of parenting
Ask Yer Father – Facebook recently banned Adam from selling his gardening equipment. Also, he’s a stay at home dad to three boys and a key member of #dadsquad.
Nicole Roder – She’s good with shoes and words, but bad with names
Daddy Poppins – A larger-than-life humour blogger, who has really been knocking it out of the park recently
The Dadventurer – Just had a second child, but is still a first-rate parenting blogger
Outdoor Dad – A talented ex-magazine writer, who is on a mission to get more parents and kids outdoors
MCR Mom/Malibu Barbie – A lovely lady, who has been very supportive of my blog. Doesn’t post a lot, but is more active on Twitter.
Dad Blogger – Also more active on Twitter. Very good at condensing the madness of parenting into 140 characters.
The Yorkshire Dad – Likes golf and darts almost as much as I do. Gets the run around from his kids almost as much as I do. Eats some really incredible breakfasts.
The Autism Dada – Provides a fascinating insight into autism
Okay, team. If you want to keep this thing going, then feel free to answer the below questions. If you don’t, then c’est la vie.
- What makes a good blogger?
- How long do you spend on Twitter every day?
- What one app or plugin would you recommend to new bloggers?
- What’s the most frustrating aspect of blogging?
- What was your last blog post about (e.g. a rant about pies, a poem about nappies)?
- An evil dictator has conquered the world. He’s only allowing people to keep one blog post each. Which of yours do you save and why?
- What was the subject line of the last email you received (note: if it contains personal information, go for the second last email)?
- What was the last award you won?
- Mac or PC?
- What’s your party trick (e.g. doing a back flip, eating fire, fitting 125 spicy peanuts in your mouth)?
- How many golf balls can you fit inside a school bus?*
Catch you all on Twitter soon.
*FYI: this is one of the questions you get asked when interviewing for Google.