Miss Alexandrina

The thinking-space of a not-quite novelist


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Paper Fury’s Party Blogger Tag

To celebrate Cait G Drews’ new blog – from NotebookSisters to PaperFury, she’s hosting a party. Yay, party! Cait created this ‘BOUT THIS BLOGGER (yes, the caps are very necessary!) tag for everyone to participate in. Yay, again!

  1. Why did you start blogging?

I started blogging because of That Fantasy Blog. Back in 2011, bloggers Alex and Jamie made a call for writers for a charity ebook, Scream For Charity. Since they were looking for dark, horror or thriller stories, I decided to rewrite the nighttime scene from my YA murder mystery novel, Of Jackets and Phones. My 7-thousand-word short about a girl called Athena who may or may not have killed the man she was obsessed with – A Rosary, a Fume Cabinet and a Music Book – was accepted and praised. During the editing process, we got to know each other, and the topic came to blogs. Whilst, I argued, I had no idea what to blog about, the guys eventually convinced me to start one.

And, as they say, the rest is history.

2. What’s the story behind your blog’s name?

Simple, really: it’s my name. I didn’t know what to call the blog, so it made sense to go with something that I knew was me – my name. As you may see, the URL is still missalexandrinabrant, because I didn’t associate myself with the moniker Miss Alexandrina until over half a year after beginning when people started calling me it. Quite in a happy coincidence, when I started getting into traditionalism, formality, and steampunk, having the Miss before my name suited me well. (Just don’t call me Missy!)

3. How many designs have you been through since you started blogging? (Pictures! We demand pictures!)

Three…? I think. Let’s get this out here now: I am not an artist. Nor am I a programmer or anyone with the time/interest in programming. I’ve been using WordPress’ themes and swapping between them when one gets stale. If I can, I go for readability. I started with quite a dark background and a simple theme to get the hang of it, but later, sticking with the greeny colour-schemes I moved to my previous one – the one with an apple on the top. After a while, though, I realised the narrow central column was making posts look a lot longer than they were and making font smaller. We hence got the theme you see now, all wide and white and green (colour choices mine to match the photograph from my meadow portfolio). The one thing I don’t like about this theme is that the automatic font colour is this odd off-grey…

I had no pictures, though I’m pretty sure daffodils were a colour feature at some point…

IMAG7661

Actually, for Miss Alexandrina’s third birthday, I’ve got some exciting redesign ideas in progress.

4. Have you ever switched blog platforms? What made you move? If you haven’t ever changed…why?

Nope. Reason: I like the smoothness and accessibility between blogs of WordPress.

5. How long does it take you to write a post? What’s your postly process like?

It depends what the content is and how alert I am. Right now, I’m speed-writing this because I have Quidditch training in less than an hour and things on the rest of the evening and night. Other posts, though, can take up to two hours to purely write and edit, especially if there’s research or referencing involved. I always write first, then proofread, then insert it into the WP post creator, then add the pictures where my <> marks are, then preview/proofread again, and finally post.

Normally, though, it’s finding the pictures or gifs that takes up the most time. Sometimes, I have to take the photo; other times, I have to find a photo in my files; yet other times, it’s scouring Google for gifs I don’t even know I want.

6. Have you ever been super nervous about a post? Why? What was it?

I’m always nervous about every post I make. Anxiety doesn’t help, but I often feels there is this air of judgement hanging around every word I type, and I am hesitant to give my full view on things for this reason. I don’t want to cause a stink, and if that means I hold a part of myself back, so be it.

7. Do you have a blogging schedule?

Yes! Often!

Mondays is my Photograph of the Week day. This is to keep up my amateur photography practise and to keep an eye on my world. Plus, they tend to get quite good attendance.

Tuesdays is a day off. Sometimes – if I find I have all the other slots of the week or coming weeks booked up – Tuesday is my ‘short post’ day for things like poems or extracts which don’t need much editing. As a hang-over from last year’s timetable, Tuesday was a busy day in which I had no time to post, so, though it has swapped with Wednesday on my timetable, Tuesday is still free day and Wednesday is post day.

Wednesday is (still) ‘big post’ day. It’s for posts like these, as part of tags or blog hops, which take time to write, but less time to think about. This means, I can spend the little time I have typing away, rather than umming and erring about what I want to say.

Thursday is officially reblog day. I have no time on Thursdays, either, but I found myself reblogging so often on Thursdays that I tried to make it a thing, to look at other blogs and post here what I’m glad to see on the ‘net, often about blogging itself or faith or lifestyle. Rarely about writing.

On Fridays, I link up with the other Catholic bloggers over at This Ain’t the Lyceum and we summarise how our weeks have been in 7 Quick Takes.

Saturday is my second ‘big post’ day for more creative things, such as tips on writing, lists, reviews, ideas.

Sunday is the Lord’s day, so is another day off. If I come back from Mass inspired, though, I do like to post a short thought on Sundays.

8. Do you tell people In-Real-Life about your blog? Their reactions?

No. Very few people call me Alexandrina in real life anyway, so this is one compartmentalisation I need to do to separate my scholarly side from the side in real life who knows people. Besides, it would seem an imposition to have them infesting her, and I don’t suppose the things she goes on about would interest them anyway.

9. Top ten blogs you read/comment on the most! Go! Go!

Ah, oh no, don’t put me on the spot! That wouldn’t be fair. Uh, Musings From Neville’s Navel, MiriamJoyWrites, Lit and Scribbles with Jae, Aussie Owned and Read.

And, of course, Paper Fury.

That’s five.

10. If you could change/improve things about your blog, what would they be?

To read and comment on other people’s blogs more often than I do. In my hectic life, I forfeit spending more time on other blogger’s stuff, and that’s not conducive to being nice.

Thanks for sticking through the journey, guys. I can’t believe I’ve been blogging for almost 3 years. How time flies, eh? *grin* And don’t forget to head over to Paper Fury and look around. It’s a nice, shiny place. :D


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Sceam For Charity Success

The ebook ‘Scream For Charity’ has stopped selling and the entire proceeds will go to UNICEF.

I am particularly proud  to have been part of this ebook- with my short story ‘A Rosary, A Fume Cabinet, and A Music Book’- as it is my first adventure into publishing, letting me into the experience of e-publishing, and building my (though I must admit, slightly more selfish!) ambitions of becoming a professional writer.

Though the aforementioned story, also called ‘Genevra’ (after the forename of the obsessive protagonist), took a shorter amount of time to write than I had anticipated, it opened my eyes to two genres of literature that I had never tried before: short story-telling and darker tales. Though I had dealt copiously with murder mystery cosies beforehand, I had never taken the darker side to human nature into my hands. And I have, since ‘Genevra’ in October/November, written two new horror shorts. I’m fascinated by the behavioural/cognitive psychology behind the way humanity can behave in certain situations, a fact I hope I put-forward in ‘Genevra’. Perhaps there is even some Psychodynamic Psychology in Genevra’s unhealthy passions for her music teacher and the way she acts in the event of his death. However, that is a subject for a new post…

I’d like to thank the guys over at ThatFantasyBlog for giving me such an experience and chance (after all, if it weren’t for them, I wouldn’t have a blog :P), and a big thanks to whomever bought the ebook, thus giving something to combat child-suffering. I’d also personally like to thank Tianna Woolf for her eager unoffical-editor eyes!

 

The full information about the money raised is here on ‘ThatFantasyBlog”s, well, blog, the original concept being found under their ‘Book Publishing’ tab:

Thank you all for the support you gave us..

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