Tell me about the person behind the blog?
This isn’t where I should start saying that my hobbies include swimming, cooking, socialising…just like the ‘about you’ on a CV, right?
Phew! Essex girl at heart, but now I live up in the Scottish Borders and have done since I was 16 (11 years). I have (somehow) managed to keep my Essex accent! I am a single mum to a beautiful little girl, Eva. I am a self appointed music buff, so you may find me pretending to be a new member of UB40 whilst I’m washing up, well, either that or attracting all of my neighbours dogs to the garden! On a serious note, I enjoy the simple things in life, and I have always found the little things far more rewarding. I am extremely fiery, black and white and often sharp tongued, yet I have a huge heart, extremely generous and will always go out of my way to help other folk.
When did you start blogging and why?
I started blogging in March 2016, despite being an avid bookworm for well over twenty years. Why? Well, for me personally, books aren’t just ‘books’, they are respite from my daily battles (I have seven chronic illnesses and they’re getting worse), so when authors write such fantastic books which allow me to escape to a different country, or be able to ‘work’ in places I know I’ll never manage — all whilst still wearing my pjs, I felt like I needed to give something back to those authors. I know I’ll never be able to repay them all for giving me that escapism. Yet, by starting my blog, The Writing Garnet, and reviewing their titles/doing interviews with them, or just promoting their books, I feel as though it was (and is) my own way of saying thanks. So yeah, that is honestly why I started blogging.
What are your proudest moments or achievements to date as a blogger?
There are quite a few. Recently I won Most Inspirational Blog in the 2017 Blogger Bash Awards, I genuinely never thought I would win so that award means so much to me for so many reasons. I also find being quoted on a publicity graphic for a book an achievement as its like ‘omg, that’s my quote’. Also, earlier this year I was quoted in a paperback (What Alice Knew by T.A.Cotterell) which was pretty amazing. I have also had a quote printed on a mug thanks to Zara Stoneley! Another huge achievement for me, and definitely a proud moment, was when I found out my quote was being used on the front cover of a book, I think I squealed my house down. See, told you there were quite a few, and they’re not all listed. But, in all fairness, being a respected blogger and being able to ‘rub shoulders’ with some truly incredible authors and bloggers, is definitely a proud moment.
If you had to breakdown the components of your ideal perfect book what would they be?
Oo thats a good question! My ideal book would be able to grab my attention within the first few pages, as I find that pretty important. I want to be intrigued. I want to have a reason to carry on reading. I look for believable storylines, realistic characters who are three dimensional and not there just to make up numbers, and a storyline which has the ability to make me react. By that I mean; laughing, crying, gasping, heart pounding, and so on. I love it when I if I am able to relate to the storyline or a character, as well.
What is your favourite genre to read?
Ahhhh tough one! Erm, I used to be a complete chic-lit girl back in the day, but now I am absolutely adore psychological thrillers AND chic-lit/women’s fiction/contemporary fiction. Oh, and add crime to that too. Sorry, I can’t pick just one!
What are your top 3 books?
My three books that I would recommend are:
The Legacy of Lucy Harte by Emma Heatherington because it was one of the only books that has made me stop and think about the storyline multiple times throughout. Even though it’s extremely heartbreaking, it is such a beautiful, beautiful read. It made me see certain situations in a different light and the book will forever hold a special place in my heart.
The Quiet Man by James Carol because it completely blew my mind. Such a fast paced, gripping read that kept me guessing the entire way through. I loved how the author set the scene throughout the storyline; so many shockers in such a short space of time. Fantastic book.
The Chateau of Happily Ever Afters by Jaimie Admans because if a book can make my sides hurt from laughing so hard after a mere 6%, then it’s a keeper. I thought it was absolutely hilarious! It’s such a happy-go-lucky type of book which managed to lift my spirits, as well as adding a little bit of heat under the collar. Such a well written, hilarious and heart-warming read, it’s definitely in my ‘Top Books – EVER!’ list. Everyone should grab a copy, it’s brilliant. xx
Finally, tell me more about your blog and why we should subscribe?
The Writing Garnet isn’t just about books and book reviews. I blog about lifestyle (mental health/chronic illness/real life) as well, which are equally important. I believe that all of my posts are written from the heart, and all the book reviews I post are constructive and not nasty. The Writing Garnet isn’t a constant stream of serious posts; I like to think that I am able to make my readers laugh as well. My blog is 100% me and a 100% real; that is why I would love anyone to subscribe to my blog and get involved. Without you guys, The Writing Garnet wouldn’t have been possible.
You can follow Kaisha and subscribe to her blog here: https://thewritinggarnet.wordpress.com