Thursday, 31 July 2014

Blogger interview - Kathryn Grimes from Tsk Tsk What to Read

I'm starting a new tradition on this blog - every once in a while I'll interview a book blogger. Some of my closest friends are bloggers and I know how much hard work they put into their blogs, promoting authors and their work. So it's only fair that we, the authors, return the favour. And besides, they're all such cool, awesome people that it'll be my pleasure to talk to them!
I'll kick things off with my dear friend Kathryn Grimes from Tsk Tsk What to Read. Kat and I go way back - I was a fan of her blog way before I published my first book. When In a Heartbeat came out, I didn't know the first thing about promotion. I contacted Kat to ask if she'd read and review my book, and she wholeheartedly agreed even though she'd never heard of me before. She not only gave me a chance, but she did everything she could to make the book successful without ever wanting anything in return - simply because she loved it. I won't be exaggerating if I say that I'm where I am today because of Kat and her continuous support. Oh, and the fact that she's a huge 30 Seconds to Mars fan made us even closer LOL

  • Teodora Kostova: So, Kat, tell me about your blog Tsk Tsk What to Read and why readers should visit it?

  • Kathryn Grimes: TSK TSK was started over 2 1/2 years ago I began it with a friend, Shelley Bunnell, To share my love of books with others in the community. It opened many doors for me to be able to meet some phenomenal authors and ultimately read some amazing books!! Readers who would like to find recommendations of a variety of books from several genres is a good reason to visit the blog. There are also giveaways and special posts from time to time...
  • TK: I know all that is true, I've been reading your blog for the better part of 2 years and it always manages to add to my (huuuuge) tbr lol

  • KG: HA!!! Yeah... I definitely have a TBR that I will never complete in this lifetime..

  • TK: Do you think anything has changed in the bloggerverse ever since you started blogging, and if so, what?

  • KG: Oh yes!! The community has grown exponentially And with that it has also brought in some good and bad... I feel blog tours aren't as relevant as they used to be... Sure, they get the word out, but when I speak to a lot of readers, many say they don't check out the tour posts unless it's something different. The generic tours of guest posts, spotlights, etc just aren't luring people in. Even reviews aren't being looked at as much b/c people are worried about being spoiled or something else But as a positive, there are still new intriguing things happening and I'm eager to see where things head next.

  • TK: Hm, I haven't thought about it that way - about the blog tours. Do you have any advice for authors how to change things up and get out of the same ol' same ol' rut when promoting their new book?

  • KG: Well I think having a few trusted bloggers as friends is a good thing. They are out there in the community and seeing what is working and what's not. They can then talk strategy with the author. Allowing creative juices to work and build to attain that ultimate goal of success

  • TK: Yes, that's very good advice. I'm lucky to count a few bloggers among my close friends *wink wink* and I can vouch for them always doing everything they can to help me with anything I ask.
  • KG: And having that relationship is vital in this community. I'm embarrassed at some bloggers and how they treat authors sometimes as well as other bloggers.

  • Aren't we all here because we love reading???

  • TK: Exactly!! Absolutely agree!

    What are your biggest challenges as a blogger?

  • KG: Mine would be time... I have a full time job teaching plus a family so devoting time to reading, reviewing, then developing the posts is time consuming...

  • TK: Which brings us to my next question - If you stopped blogging all of a sudden, what would you do with all that free time?
  • KG: Well I would surely continue to read. But I would probably get back in to photography. I really enjoy taking photos and developing that artistically...

  • TK: Did you ever think about giving up?
  • KG: Oh yes... And there are still days now that I want to walk away...

  • TK: If you had to think of a single moment that makes all the hard work worth it what would it be?
  • KG: That's hard... But when I see someone pick up a book that I reviewed and recommended and then turn around and love it... Yeah... That puts a huge smile on my face.... I also have to say the friendships I have gained too... If it wasn't for blogging I wouldn't have probably met some of the most awesome people!!! *wink, wink*

  • TK: You were one of the blog organisers at this year's UTOPYA Con. Tell us a bit more about it - how did it feel to take such an active part in such a big event?
  • KG: I was completely honored!!! Being able to bring UTOPYA information to people via the blog, speak on a panel at the conference, being nominated for best blog... It is all humbling and overwhelming...

  • TK: You've met so many authors in person, haven't you? Who has left the biggest impression and why?
  • KG: Wow!!! This is definitely a hard question... Can I name more than one?

  • TK: Of course you can

  • KG: I have been in the reading world for a while... I have a mile long list of favorite books and stuff... I have four that I can narrow it down to... In no order... 1)Samantha Young--she is such an amazing author..and an absolute pleasure to talk to. Meeting her last year has truly been one of the highlights of my life. 2) Michelle Leighton -- Michelle is such brilliant author and this lady has such a heart of gold. She has a light inside her that shines so bright that when you are in the same room as her, you can't help but feel the beautiful soul that she is... 3) Jeaniene Frost -- When I got to meet her last year, absolute fangirl moment. she wrote my favorite series, the Night Huntress series,and being in her presence I was just giddy... Seeing someone that writes your all time favorite books and seeing how genuinely awesome they are really just makes your day. 4) Rachel Caine -- I just got to see her this year at RT and if I left after seeing her without seeing anyone else, I would have been just fine. Author of the Morganville Vampire series, she is truly one of my favorite authors... I know I can mention more. There are some phenomenal authors that I get to talk to and meet ***I am still waiting to meet you...then I know I can add you to this list***

  • TK: I'm so jealous of that list! And us meeting will be EPIC! I know it'll happen soon ;)

    Do you have any advice to bloggers just starting out?
  • KG: Just take your what you love, blog what you love... Find other bloggers to connect with and build strong true friendships... When you have all that, blogging will be fun and less of a job.
  • TK: Do your friends, family and co-workers know about your blog? What do they think about it?
  • KG: They do....I have a couple that actually follow and stuff.. Family too....they'll ask me about it when they see me.. The hubs gets annoyed at times since it is time consuming....but he knows I love my books!!! LOL

  • TK: OK, let's have a flash round! I love those!

    Backstreet Boys or Nsync

  • KG: Nsync

  • TK: *glares at you* Batman or Superman

  • KG: SUPERMAN!!!!!!
  • TK: Morning or night
  • KG: sooooo not a morning person
  • TK: True Blood or Vampire Diaries
  • KG: Vampire Diaries

  • TK: *continues to glare*
  • KG: I don't watch either really. But I read Vampire Diaries
  • TK: Books or audio books
  • KG: Books

  • TK: Disney or Dreamworks
  • KG: Oh man... that is a hard one... Can I say both?

  • TK: No
  • KG: Damn. Ok...Disney
  • TK: Sushi or pizza
  • KG: Pizza
  • TK: Rock or pop
  • KG: ROCK!!!

  • TK: Yeah, baby!!! TV series or movies
  • KG: Movies

  • TK: That's about all have lol Thank you so much for being such an awesome interviewee! It was great talking to you!!
  • KG: That was tough...I was sweating through some of those.

  • TK: Hahaha, come on, it was fun
  • KG: Absolutely my pleasure!!! And was fun!!!

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