Like last year, we have been asked to answer five questions to introduce ourselves. Rather than simply repeat what I said last year I will answer different questions this time around. You can find links to other blogs taking part here.
Please tell us a little bit about yourself: Who are you? How long have you been blogging? Why did you get into blogging?
Hello, my name is Sue and I am a book addict! :D
That seems a little too short to describe me, so I will try to add a little more information to paint more of a detailed picture of me and how I ended up here in the blogosphere. I was born and raised in Lancaster, England, and gained a BSc in Biology from the university there. After graduating, I moved to Aberdeenshire, Scotland, with my husband-to-be and taught Biology and Chemistry for thirteen years before I retired in order to maintain my sanity. I changed to offering private tuition and spent several happy years helping eager pupils to improve their academic performance whilst I studied Classical Studies courses with the Open University. Luckily I completed my BA before my husband got a job in Maine, in the United States, which is where we live now.
I have been blogging seriously for about a year and a half now, something that I never thought I would do, but I had reached a point where I wanted to share my love of reading with as many people as possible. It all started with my discovery of Not Your Ordinary Book Group at my local library. As well as making some wonderful new friends I discovered that I love reading books along with other people and discussing them. I was introduced to a lot of interesting authors and finally to a book that made me want to go out and push it into peoples’ hands: Garden Spells by Sarah Addison Allen. This book was the real reason for starting this blog, although I struggled at first to get to grips with the blogosphere itself. I had some wonderful help, which I will discuss in tomorrow’s post about Blogger Development.
Where in the world are you blogging from? Tell a random fact or something special about your current location. Feel free to share pictures.
I always blog from my iMac, which sits on the debris-strewn table that we have in the area next to our kitchen, so that is where I am right now. This would be in the house in Maine that we bought in 2008 when we arrived in the US. This area of the house has under-floor heating so I always have toasty warm feet in the winter!
Random facts about Maine:
99% of all US blueberries are produced here and 90% of all US toothpicks
Steven King has a house in Bangor, Maine with exceptionally cool gates
It is illegal to stroll down the street while playing a violin in Augusta.
It is illegal for a tenant to bite his/her landlord in Rumford.
It is to step out of an airplane flying over Maine's airspace.
It is illegal to blow one's nose in public in Waterville.
Have you previously participated in Armchair BEA? What brought you back for another year? If you have not previously participated, what drew you to the event?
I took part in the event last year and enjoyed discovering other blogs and reading about other bloggers. I was drawn to the event because attending BEA is not really an option for me, so this is a very good alternative. In fact, having spoken to some people who attended BEA 2012, I think the Armchair event is probably much more helpful for stimulating the Blogging community and encouraging us to keep writing and sharing our thoughts. Of course, we do not get several suitcases of free books, but I bet that most of them are left unread anyway, so that is not as much of a loss as it seems.
What are you currently reading, or what is your favorite book you have read so far in 2013?
At the moment I am feverishly reading Grail of the Summer Stars by Freda Warrington. I finished the previous book in this series, Midsummer Night on Friday last week and simply had to keep on reading the series. I am also working my way through Robert Jordan’s newly completed Wheel of Time series as part of a Read Along with some other equally crazy individuals. We are just starting Book 4: The Shadow Rising, so we only have eleven more titles to go . . . as I said, we are a little crazy! :D
Other memorable reads so far this year have been:
Cinder by Marissa Meyer
The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood
A Lady Awakened by Cecilia Grant
A Season for the Dead by David Hewson
Stardust by Neil Gaiman
Name your favorite blog(s) and explain why they are your favorite(s).
This is a really difficult question to answer, because I do not want to offend anyone. However, there are some bloggers who have been exceptionally welcoming to me and have encouraged me to become part of the community. They have introduced me to wonderful authors, welcomed my thoughts on a wide variety of questions and have generally made me feel like I am not simply shouting into the dark. Their blogs are well written and interesting and I have come to trust their recommendations and opinions.
nrlymrtl at Dab of Darkness
Carl at Stainless Steel Droppings
Redhead at the Little Red Reviewer
I also have to give a special mention to Kristen at Fantasy Cafe. She has been instrumental in helping me grow as a blogger, as you will see in my post tomorrow, and continues to be very supportive.