Before I get to the “extRA questions” of the title, I need to share another great ode by Kathy with the world. As always, too good to get lost in comments:
So, our need for
hot eye candy intellectual stimulation fulfilled, I can carry on with my post…
While I was still finishing up my RA Challenge ♡, fellow fan SueBC had moved on to her reply to the ever-circling Liebster Award on her blog I’m Feeling This. Some of her own questions for the continuation of the blog award, caught my attention. They would have been interesting as part of the RA Challenge ♡, too, as well as the old Blog Introspection Challenge from early 2015. Sue gave me the go ahead to answer a shorter catalogue of questions, and if you feel in the swing of another little blog challenge, why don’t you answer this, too? (All credit and references back to her, please 😉 .) As usual, I am particularly interested in the views of the commenters. The comment thread is yours!
Here is Sue’s list of questions
picked by me, followed by my answers:
1. What is your favourite photo ever of your favourite actor or actress?
2. What time of day do you usually write and/or blog and why?
3. Does your avatar have special significance and if so, what is that significance?
4. In your real life, how open are you about the fact that you have a blog?
5. What are the boundaries for you in terms of how much of your real life you share on your blog?
1. Favourite Photo Ever
I love everything about this photo – the colours, the clever placement of the subject against the wall, the relaxed pose, the Lucas North styling, the perspective from slightly above, the off-centre composition, the lighting that creates a bit of shadow on the subject’s face, the intriguing look on the subject’s face, the evidence of strong thighs and biceps, the extended thumb… It’s not too polished, yet shot with the evidence of a professional photographer who knows his stuff. I’ll spare you the denotations and connotations of the image
(they were not a huge hit when I posted them on tumblr 😂) , even though they are part of the reason why I like this image so much. My love for this picture probably also comes down to my discovery of it at a time when I was hypersensitive to good photography – and to the appeals of Richard Armitage.
2. Blogging Schedule
Two favourite times: Either in the morning, on days when I don’t have much work; or in the evening, when work has been done. I prefer the mornings, though, because I tend to be alone at home at that time, so there is no “danger” of someone walking in on me and disturbing my train of thought.
3. Significance of my Avatar
I better show you my avatar in full glory before I explain.
It may not be self-explanatory anymore because it has been a long, long time since I last wrote an *ooof*. So here we go – when the original picture appeared on the entertainment site click, it caused a bit of hoohaa in the fandom because it was an answer to the question whether he was a cat or a dog person. While the cat lovers in the fandom were slightly put out by Richard’s cheeky two-part answer, the dog people were very pleased:
Guylty (self-confessed dog-lover despite being a cat-owner), however, only focussed on the chosen dog sound – because it fits very nicely with her moniker for her photo analyses… Besides – *ooof*, the man did look pretty hot in his slightly dishevelled early-morning-hair… (If you want to know why he looks that way, read this fan fic entitled “Bed Head” – It’s one of my favourites and I think it argues the case pretty convincingly… Note: It’s NSFW RPF, so if you don’t like RPF, don’t read!)
Anyway, I adjusted the picture sliiiiightly to fit my own agenda *coughs*, and it’s been my avatar on WP ever since. I’m usually not a fan of pictures of the OOA as an avatar (all my other Social Media accounts have a photo of “Armitage House” as the avatar), because there is always a chance that two people may use the same avatar – which can cause confusion. But this one was just too good to pass up…
4. In your real life, how open are you about the fact that you have a blog?
In my RL, a lot of people know that I am a fan, and a lot of my RL friends and family also know that I have a blog. I find it difficult to hide anything – mainly because a) I am not fond of secrets and lies, and b) my blogging activities have tangible, RL effects that I have had to explain to my friends and family. For instance, when my dad died (almost to the day) three years ago, my dear fandom friends and readers organised a fundraising drive in honour of my father which resulted in a massive donation to a cause that had been named by my mother and myself, in lieu of flowers, as well as donations to RA’s JustGiving pages. I felt that that had to be acknowledged by my RL family, and so I disclosed that I was part of a community of fans, by virtue of being a blogger. Similarly, I eventually had to explain to my children and husband why there was a continuous stream of parcels arriving at our house for a while – all thanks to my blogging (and crafting) activities.
So the upshot is that many people in my RL know that I blog. However, I have not told anyone the name of my blog and where to find it. I insist that I am not embarrassed about what I am doing on my blog. The reason I am not throwing that info around is connected to my unwillingness to justify my enthusiasm for an actor to people who may not understand why that gives me any kind of pleasure. Plus, since my work happens on the internet as well, I do not want my professional life as a rather serious, specialised writer to be associated with my entertainment-focussed hobby. That said – I don’t think I’ll be fired if my fandom activities were to be known. I think my bosses would actually find it quite funny. And who knows – it would even open up a completely new niche of specialisation for me?
5.What are the boundaries for you in terms of how much of your real life you share on your blog?
Well, a lot of that harks back to what I have written in the previous question: It starts with keeping my real name out of my blog, as well as my face, for the reasons cited above. I also draw the line at showing my children’s photos (an old habit from when they were young; I think that parents should *never* post images of their children publicly online, and that even includes quasi-private social media platforms such as Facebook.) Respecting the privacy of others is important to me, which is why I don’t name friends or family who are not part of the fandom. Plus, this is a fandom blog dedicated to RA – I write under the assumption that my audience
predominantly want to read about Armitage, not about me. The occasional breaches of my own rules tend to happen in the context of photography (when I am posting a slide-show of my holiday snaps or when I have seen an interesting exhibition), when RL has had an impact on my blogging behaviour (such as my dad’s death), or when things happen in RL that may be of universal interest (like elections, or other news). But unless my RL has some kind of relevance to the topic of the individual RA-related blog post, I always keep references out.
Having said all that, I do realise that my RL sneaks into my blog, mostly in asides, or in individual sentences, when I am explaining something. The temptation to write more about myself, is always there – who *doesn’t* like to talk about themselves? – but I try to keep it in check. This is a fan blog about RA, and I want to keep it that way.
Now, what about yourselves?
Link me your favourite pics (I could put them into a picture gallery in a separate post), tell me about your blog reading/writing habits, reveal the secret of your avatar, and tell us how much your RL knows about your fan girling activities. I am very curious!
And thanks to SueBC for the interesting questions!