So today I am officially introducing you to the lovely Michelle (Clover) from Fluttering Butterflies.
I hope that it lets you get to know her a bit better and you can see why she is such a lovely person who deserves to be followed by you. :-)
Tell us a little something about yourself!
Hello! Thank you so much for having me today :) My name is Michelle, and I’m the blogger behind Fluttering Butterflies. Besides running my book blog, I’m also a mother of two boys and I’m studying for a degree in Psychology (just this year and one more to go, hurrah!). I’m an American who has lived in the UK for the past 12 years and hopefully by the time this interview is up, I will be a British citizen! *fingers crossed*
I really love jelly beans and Scrabble. I collect Eeyores and I am always losing my bookmarks when I read.
How long have you had your blog?
Can you believe I have just celebrated my *7* year blog anniversary?! I’m shocked and delighted that I’ve stuck with the blog for so long. I’m amazed every single day that there are people out there who visit and actually read the words that I write for it!
Do you enjoy running your blog?
…for the most part, yes! Very much. I love the community that comes with blogging very much. I enjoy talking about books with other passionate and friendly people and I certainly would never have lasted as long as I have without the great people that I’ve met through blogging, including my readers, other bloggers, authors and publicists. You are all incredible!
But I would definitely say that I also don’t enjoy blogging a lot of the time as well. Mostly because I seem to struggle with finding the right balance for my personal life and blogging. I find I put a lot of pressure on myself that is very unnecessary and I need to constantly remind myself that blogging is meant to be a fun hobby, something that I’m meant to enjoy. I need to let a lot of the guilt and pressure go, and I’m slowly trying to do so. Baby steps.
When you started, did you ever think that it would end up the way it has?
Oh, absolutely not! I started Fluttering Butterflies a few short months after my eldest son was born as a way of occupying myself during those newborn days when he slept 3/4 of the day. I had just given up my bookseller job and wanted to find a satisfying creative outlet. My blog when I first started is massively different than it is now, but hopefully that change has been for the better! I honestly thought that I’d give up on the blog fairly quickly and here I am 7 years later…
Is there an interesting background story to the name of your blog, if there is, tell us!
There’s definitely no interesting story, I’m afraid. My blog was originally called ‘Random Bits and Pieces’ or something equally lame. It was never intended to be a book blog, as 7 years ago, I hadn’t heard of book blogs! When I decided it was time for a more interesting blog name, I was stumped. I had zero inspiration. It was while blog-hopping that I stumbled across a blog post about gardening. The blogger had written that she had been watching butterflies fluttering around some flowers one day and that pretty image stuck with me.
As we’ve got this far without mentioning it, why not tell us a little something about your blog, what you post, how it runs, who you cater to, etc.
I read mostly young adult fiction, so my blog is definitely geared towards other YA readers. I try very hard to make my blog varied in the blog posts that I write. Because it was a personal blog before it became a book blog, I make every attempt at writing personal posts as often as I can. This often includes my childhood memories in the US, my two beautiful boys, sometimes about movies and television. These posts usually concern things that I can’t get out of my head and that I need to work through. Lately, this seems to revolve around fears.
As I go through review-writing slumps quite often, I do also try to write non-review posts about books. These can be really fun and are actually my favourite type of posts to write. I also do my best to read and promote British authors of YA, which you will notice has been made a priority this year on my blog! I’m also keen on writing about mental health issues, awesome women, and I really love to do themed months/weeks.
Do you participate or host and blog memes? If you do, which is your favourite?
I do participate in one blog meme – Top Ten Tuesday hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. I quite like the topics that they pick every week as well as knowing at least one post during the week is taken care of. It can be a bit exhausting thinking of different things to write about every week on my own!
I also run interviews every Saturday – this feature is called ‘Celebrating British Bloggers’ and has been a fun way to meet other British bloggers, some of whom have just started or are actual teenagers. I really love the bloggers that I have met face-to-face, but it’s also awesome getting to know those bloggers who aren’t as well known.
What about blog tours and blog hops? Have you ever or do you ever want to participate in them?
I definitely do participate in blog tours, I think they can be quite fun. One of the major perks about book blogging is the interaction that I am able to have with some of my favourite authors. I love how it is so much easier to contact authors of the books you love through email, twitter or facebook. I love being able to tell an author how much their book meant to me or how much it impacted me emotionally. And with blog tours, it can be quite interesting to read more about a character or the inspiration behind the stories or whatever. I’m a very nosy person in general, so I like reading things like this.
What is the best book you read in 2012?
My favourite book of 2012 was Heart-Shaped Bruise by Tanya Byrne. I thought it was incredibly done. I really felt for Emily despite the bad decisions she made and the terrible things she had done. She’s a very broken and yet still sympathetic character and I was gripped by her story from the very first page.
What about so far in 2013?
Ooh, tough one! There are some excellent sounding books that I’m eagerly awaiting this year. But of the books that I’ve read so far this year, I’ve loved three more than most: Hysteria by Megan Miranda, Pantomime by Laura Lam and Infinite Sky by CJ Flood.
Has there ever been a book that you haven’t been able to finish? If so, what was it? And why couldn’t you finish?
Absolutely loads. I’m not the sort of person who will struggle on with a book just for the sake of finishing a book. I figure life is too short to spend on a book that I’m not enjoying. Especially when I have hundreds of unread books, and I’m bound to really love many of those. So I’ll give a book its fair shot, but if there is something about the book – the characters are uninteresting or the story bores me, I’ll just stop. The last book that I gave up on? The Scorch Trials by James Dashner. I really enjoyed The Maze Runner, but I didn’t find that The Scorch Trials held my interest at all. I loved the mystery and the build-up of the first book, but it didn’t translate as well in the sequel.
What is your favourite book genre?
I really like them all! I used to say that I didn’t enjoy historical fiction as much, but then I’ve read some brilliant historical YA lately, so those books have completely changed my mind about the genre. I love fantasy and science fiction, I love paranormals every now and again and I can definitely fall easily into some good dystopian/post-apocalyptic stories. But my favourite ever? Has to be contemporary. It’s the relatability of realistic fiction that I love the most.
Quick Fire Round
ebook or hardcopy?
Has to be hardcopy! I have dozens of unread ebooks on my Kindle and I’m assuming that they’ll stay unread for quite some time as there just isn’t any sort of urgency to read ebooks for me!
ya or adult?
YA. I do read adult fiction now and again, but YA has my heart.
vampires or werewolves?
Werewolves. I love reading about the bond and loyalty amongst werewolves packs as it speaks to something inside me which I crave: belonging.
chocolate or vanilla?
Chocolate. I find vanilla to be utterly boring.
harry potter or twilight?
Harry Potter! I love Twilight as well, but it doesn’t have the same timeless magic that the Harry Potter series has. My 7 year old son is reading the third book in the HP series and watching him get excited over this story and these characters is brilliant.
four or peeta?
Four! Peeta is great, don’t get me wrong, but there’s just something about Four that attracts me more.
series or single?
Ugh, standalones, please! I’m getting old and my memory and concentration levels are not what they used to be. I don’t want every book I read to be in a series, it drives me crazy.
blogger or wordpress?
I use blogger, so I’ll go with that! I have no experience of WordPress though, so *shrugs*
And finally, Is there anything else you would like to say about you or your blog?
Only thank you so much, Faye, for this! I had fun answering these questions and I really appreciate being your Blogger spotlight!
Thank you so much for answering the questions Michelle! It’s been a pleasure having you on the blog today. Did you like getting to know a little bit more about Michelle? Why not find out even MORE about her by going and checking out her glorious blog here