Can you tell us a bit about yourself and your blog? How did you first get into blogging?
I certainly can! Hello I’m Ali and I tend to describe myself as an aspiring crazy cat lady who loves to read books, drink countless mugs of tea and spends too much time on social media.
I have been blogging for nearly 3 years now and it all started after I dropped out of university after finishing my first year. I had been reading blogs for quite a while then and if I’m honest I was feeling lost after that big lifestyle change; I decided that I wanted to take the leap into writing which then lead to Ali Caitrin being born!
You’ve had some fab opportunities through blogging – what’s been the best opportunity you’ve had so far?
I have gained so many great experiences through my blog that I know I wouldn’t have done anywhere else and I will always be grateful for that. One of my most recent opportunities was when Dee and I went to the Fantastic Beasts Fan event in Leicester Square where we got to see J K Rowling and the actors/actresses from the film! We didn’t actually know who was going to be there till we arrived and it was really exciting to be in the same room as them and loads of other Potterheads.
What do you think is the best “service” a blogger can provide their audience?
As someone who is a writer and a reader I like to believe that I can see both sides. I have a huge respect for a blogger who is genuine and honest with their readers; it can be anything from a product or event review to posts where they open up about what’s going on in their lives. If the audience feel like they’re getting to know the blogger and enjoy what they write they’ll support them through it all!
Do you have a full-time job as well? How do you find the time to run your blog so professionally?
Yes I currently work for a telecoms company as a first line support engineer. It can be quite difficult juggling a full-time job and a blog as I’m sure most bloggers can relate to so things like scheduling tweets and posts in advance is really helpful. As well as that I don’t push myself to write if I don’t have the energy or time to but this was something I learned the hard way.
How has your blog changed since you first started it, to now? What was your first post about?
Definitely! I would be surprised if any blog stayed the same from when it first started. My first blog post is about the day I spent at Google HQ! I was invited to their Women in Tech Training Day back in summer 2014 and it was one of the most unique experiences I’ve ever had! Weirdly enough I like looking back at my old posts and seeing how much I’ve improved as a writer so as embarrassing as I might find them they are here to stay. For now anyway.
Do you have a favourite post that you’ve written? Does it differ from your most popular post?
It’s hard to pick one post as I’m pretty proud of a lot of them. If I had to narrow it down it would probably be my Misconceptions about Autism post because it was one of the first times I mentioned that I was autistic on my blog. This is my 2nd most popular one behind my Why I Need Feminism post. My readers seem to like it when I open up about things that are important to me!
What’s been the best thing about your blogging journey?
The best thing is that it’s become something so much bigger than I ever thought it would be. I have met people through blogging that are now friends for life and I class myself as lucky to have been able to join them at some amazing brands events throughout the country.
We all know you’re a fantastic blogger, but if you could do it all again, would you choose a different niche? Why/why not?
Well thank you for the compliment, you’re too kind! I don’t think I would change my niche no because as corny as it may sound my niche is myself. My niche will change as I grow as a person so there would be no need for me to choose a different path if that makes sense?
A lot of people think that blogging is an easy way to make money, but we all know it’s not that easy. What advice would you give new bloggers?
I’m probably not the best person to give advice on this as I’ve only done a few sponsored posts in the past. The best advice I can give from what I’ve done so far is don’t sell yourself short. I know a lot of bloggers will want to earn some money which is great but it’s a shame when I see some brands taken advance of them. There are plenty of bloggers out there who share their advice on what to do so definitely do some research before you start looking for opportunities.
And finally, we want to share the love, so who would you like to see us interview in the next newsletter?
One of my best friends Emmie from Carpe Diem Emmie was one of the first people I met from the blogger community so I would love to see you interview her! Plus she’s got some exciting things coming up that I’m sure you’ll all want to hear about.
Have more you want to ask Ali? Head over to Twitter now and get chatting. Thanks for stopping by Ali!