The second interview in my series of six is with the lovely Zarouhi who writes over at Mama and More. I remember, more than a year ago, when Zaz first began the linky #AllAboutYou, I loved the idea and was hooked right from the start.
Zaz loves yoga and her words are inspirational, you can find her on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram.
Why did you start blogging?
I began blogging shortly after going back to work after my first child. I adored my daughter - of course - but I also missed and loved the part of me that was the me-before. The career girl, the girl who put on killer heels and delivered presentations to roomfuls of people. I missed the "and more" bit of me, however when I went back to work it was so very very hard both emotionally and logistically. I began blogging to pour my heart out onto the page, and to find a space that was just for me. I also really felt frustrated when doctors, health visitors, swimming teachers etc all called me "mum" - for a start, I'm not yours, and secondly, I have a name!
What did you like most when you started?
It was and still is a space where I often brain-dump. I think that my earlier posts were far more raw, which is unsurprising given that I was going through lots of heartache at leaving my girl, yet wanting to go back to work, and juggling demands and guilt-trips on all sides. My blog was a space where I could pour my heart out.
How long have you been blogging?
Gosh, altogether now it has been about 4 or 5 years, although initially for the first few years I sometimes wrote a post or two a month, far far less than I do now! I really began to take it more seriously about a year ago.
What do you love about blogging now?
It is still resolutely my space! I love the connections I make with other people, and am constantly and pleasantly surprised that anyone reads it at all! A while ago for whatever reason I stopped posting style posts for a couple of weeks, and someone actually wrote to me to tell me they were missing them! I was amazed and touched! I also love of course that I get to write, which I love. Blogging is also an incredible medium, which from a marketing perspective is really exciting - we are publishing and editorial team in one, and can choose who we work with, and are open to amazing opportunities. It really does feel like you are making the rules!
Do you have more than one blog?
Yes, I also have a blog called Yoga with Zaz.
Yoga with Zaz is the home for information about the yoga classes I run, so it is really more informational at the moment, although there are plans in store for this to change, and I'm quite excited about having been asked to work with a couple of different people on video work, so watch this space!
What is the most important quality of a good blogger?
Being well-organised would be my top pick if forced to choose one, but as I am a Libran and rubbish at choosing just one thing, I have to also add good grammar, an engaging and honest writer (people know immediately if you are a fake!), know where your boundaries are for you and those around you, be sociable, respond to comments, read other blogs, spread good karma, be patient, and be willing to put in the hours - blogging can turn into a Beast that needs to be fed regularly! I also don't believe that you HAVE to have a niche - if you do, then brilliant, but if you want to write about all the things that you are interested in as a fascinating, multi-faceted person, why limit yourself? Many bloggers write in the style of magazines, and I am no different, covering yoga, opinions, fashion, parenting, recipes, reviews; if I'm into it, it's there, it's YOUR space!
As a Pro-Blogger what has been the best opportunity you've been offered so far?
Honestly, the best opportunity in my eyes has been the very real friendships, support and respect from my closest blogging friends, which I know continues to exist when the computer, phone and iPad are switched off! Materially speaking, I've been offered the opportunity to go on yoga retreats, receive and review clothing from great brands, and eat at wonderful restaurants. I can't always do it all, but it's wonderful that the offers do keep coming!
Is there anything you don't like about blogging?
Sigh, the technical aspect is right up there for me. My husband and I are convinced that I have negative ions, and if a computer is going to crash, or a program fail when I'm desperately trying to get a post live, it will definitely happen to me, and regularly keeps me up until 2am when I finally work things out. If I could have a little IT Elf in my pocket, I really would.
If you could recommend one blog to read, which would it be?
This is absolutely impossible to choose! There are so many well-written, fun, informative and stimulating blogs, it really depends entirely on the person reading and what they are looking for. If absolutely forced at gunpoint to choose... well, I'd have to say mine (and then you could look at the Blogs Mama Loves section or my All About You weekly linkup to find lots of truly wonderful blogs!)
Brilliant, thank you Zaz!
All About You goes live every Tuesday and I think you should all link up, it's a wonderful linky and a fabulous community to be a part of, I link up regularly.