The blogging journey

I have been fiddling about in the blogosphere since 2014.  The blogging was initially inspired by school pals (I will not say old, but you get the drift – longstanding) who wanted to know how I cooked what was in the photographs that I shared.  I also wanted to find out whether I had a voice other than my professional, formal voice – potentially to get other, different writing work.  The only way to do that was to write.

It didn’t take me long to discover that —

  • just writing recipes was boring
  • I couldn’t just write about the recipes:  I felt compelled to write the stories around them, their ingredients and, in some cases, where they came from – yes, it’s bad grammar – it’s not clear who they are…
  • I started writing about other stuff, and The Cat’s Mother emerged and the favourites became more than just food, but life’s happenings – including some “un” favourites
  • I started taking the odd photograph…

Fiona’s Favourites became

reflections in, on and round about….

And then

In 2017 I was invited to join Steemit where, through blogging, I might earn crypto currency – just before the bull run ended.  I fiddled about a bit, and two years later, I am still there and part of a growing community that produces content and where I earn Steem Based Dollars.  It’s not just the prospect of earning that keeps us there, it’s also, as is the case in the blogosphere, generally, the community of like-minded individuals one meets and the friendships that develop – in cyberspace – and which flow from the virtual into the real.

Fiona’s Favourites has now evolved to the point that it covers a multitude of sins topics, musings and rants, ranging from my original focus – cooking – to life and my participation in that crypto blogging world.

Writing

The urge (I hesitate to say inspiration) to write is one that I’d suppressed for years, but has been allowed to emerge thanks to the friends and strangers who read my blog (and  look at the photographs) – and who want more.

For some, the topics are trivial and fluffy, for others, less so.  Regardless, I have elected, in this space, to stay away (as far as possible) from politics, religion and bad wine…  So, Fiona’s Favourites is mostly a happy place, although, from time to time, sadnesses happen: all part of the fabulous fabric of life.

There is more about my blogging journey here:

The beginning – revisited
A virtual “Cheers!” to you all… 
A Different Lens
When Cape Town burned
2015 – not sorry to see you go!

Blog folk

Out of respect for the privacy of friends and family, they are not mentioned by name.  They are, in no particular order:

  • The Cats’ Father – my very longsuffering husband.  Sometimes known as The Man-in-the-Skirt and, of course, The Husband
  • The Cats’ Mother – me, myself, and I.  Sometimes called Gladys and Serenity (!)
  • Sannie Boervrou – a friend and former farmer’s wife of sunny disposition who is responsible for fostering my courgette creations and increasing passion for pickling
  • The Farmers – Jan Boer and Boer le Roux who share their surplus and/or undersized, slightly damaged  produce
  • Mr Mac – McGregor local, Scot, foodie, theatre, opera and movie buff (and member of the Grammar Police)
  • Menagerie Mum – longtime friend and colleague, currently living in Johannesburg, and who is mum to two very tall teenage boys and an assorted menagerie of cats, dogs and not least, Louise, the chicken, now in chicken heaven
  • Mark Maatjie; Chicken Pie Janet – fellow stall holders at the McGregor market.  The former is a purveyor of vegetables and fruit, not to mention, producer of the best chicken curry in the village and the latter is chef and baker extraordinaire, who’s often mentored me through challenging moments and for whose chicken pies people will happily queue every week
  • Suzie Wine – friend and founder of McGregor’s first wine bar, and soon to be proprietor of another fine establishment.

More, I am sure, will be added…

Read these, too

3D blogpals

Blog pals with whom I share real (not virtual) friendship, i.e. they have been or are a part of my life or a past life….and with whom I still stay in touch.

  • Under the Milkwood Tree, like mine, is an evolving blog. Jeanette is a former journalist and writer.  Many moons ago, at Rhodes University, we lived in the same corridor.  We lost touch, and through the passage of time, the social media and, more importantly, shared interests, we have reconnected.
  • Letters from a Mother is a whimsical view of life, love and the pursuit of happiness, through the words, drawings and artistic musings of a mother – as she writes to her son and his family. That son is good friend, The Baron….
  • American Soustannie:  You can take someone away from Africa, but Africa never leaves her.  Belladonna Took is one such now living in the USA.  Her award winning (Liebster and Versatile Blogger) blog is a (mostly) fun read.  Our one meeting, over tea, will remain with me as a surprising meeting of kindred spirits.
  • Navel-Gazing 101: Briony describes herself as a relentless people-watcher and eavesdropper with itchy feet and a predilection for adventure and stories. And then she chucks in the parenthetical comment that she’s in a wheelchair.  Well, she’s another fellow old Rhodian, a prodigious blogger, brave woman who’s wheels are firmly on the ground.  She has a zest for life that should be a lesson to us all.  I am delighted to have had the opportunity of meeting her, and of serving a Sandbag House supper to her and GM.
  • Crow’s Feet is Michelle Frost’s award-winning blog.  Michelle is school mate of mine, born in Africa, living in Scotland and who is an author and poet

Virtual blogpals

Blogs I’ve discovered through my blogging journey, whose writers have become “blog pals”, and with whom I have the most fascinating virtual conversations.  They are, in no particular order:

  • Traci York is my witchy blog pal from New Hampshire.  I kid you not.  In addition to her weekly and unmissable Tuesday Tarot readings, her blog is eclectic and as cheerful as the witch herself.
  • Plants to Planks – a blog and website about plant-based foods to fuel an active lifestyle.  Katie Jensen is a personal trainer, nutrition coach and accidental vegan from Atlanta.  Topping it all, she’s a downright nice person.  In addition to having self-published her first recipe book, her blog is full of fabulous ideas for plant-based recipes.  She and I have great fun exchanging ideas about plant-based cooking – an area I’ve been exploring since before I met the carnivorous husband and which remains a fascination.
  • Nicky Havey describes himself as a blogger, traveller and a producer of electronic liquid drum and bass music.  His travel blogs are legend, and if you like electronic music (it’s growing on me), this is a fab place to begin.  Oh, and he happens to be one of the punniest people I know on the Steemit blockchain!  Another thing: he’s considering a visit to South Africa which could necessitate his blog moving from this list to the one above.
  • Where to next? Riding in cars with dogs and What’s cooking on page 32? Peggy’s husband is a former Australian diplomat and they love traveling which tells you about the first blog.  The second is about cooking and has its own story – take a look.
  • The Drunken Cyclist is an erstwhile tour guide in France (not French) and has been noted as one of the top 100 wine bloggers in the US.  In addition to writing knowledgeably (very) about wine (and being a cyclist), Jeff’s stories of his time in France are often both self-deprecating and hilarious.  He’s being tempted (nagged) to visit South Africa where we have some of the best cycling … ahem … wine….  If he does, we shall sip good wine together, and this blog will also shift to the first list…
  • Notes from the UK:  Ellen Hawley is an American author living in Cornwall.  Her perspective on Brits and living in the UK can be both acerbic and screamingly funny.  Having grown up with British parents, and in a society that harks back to Britain, I often see in it, them and myself.

This list will grow (or shrink, as the case may be).  My informal criteria for selecting blogs I like reading:

  • topics that interest me
  • people who write what they like
  • what they have to say is compelling – whether or not I agree with them

© Fiona Cameron-Brown 2020

12 thoughts on “The blogging journey”

    1. Oh, wow, and thank you! I am honoured, Trina, that you nominated me. Yes, my blog is award-free – a decision I took because I don’t blog about blogging and I soon learned that the majority of my followers were not interested in my blogging journey. I will visit your post and comment there, too.

  1. I just saw this, i am really glad to see my blog on your list, i really appreciate your writing (learning quite a lot from you) and your support and your friendship on the wired. Thank you so much for being the light you are. I have nominated you for the Blogger recognition awards, have a look; http://www.tribe53.com/?p=1691. If you do not respond it is okay, it is just my way of saying kealeboga.

    1. How lovely to be recognised by a fellow blogger and for the words of appreciation.
      This is the second award for which I have been nominated. Please bear with me while I explain: I hadn’t been blogging for very long and was nominated for the Versatile Blogger award. Too much of a newby (or just dof – probably that), I didn’t realise that the nomination was the award. Consequently, I thanked the blogger and tweeted about it, did nothing else about it and moved along. Anyhow, it time, I saw more and more about blog awards and also realised that the majority of my readers are not interested in my blogging journey or blogging at all. So I reserve comments about that to post scripts and the odd comment.
      So thank you again and please accept, by way of my thanks, my having listed Tribe53 as one of my favourite blogs.
      My turn to say, “Kealeboga!”

      1. Thanks so much Fiona, I never realized blogging would be so fun and enlightening and never thought I would meet such great people on the internet. I usually use the nomination to say thanks to those who are kind enough to walk this blogging journey with me.

        1. Thank you, it really is appreciated. Like you, I am having much, much more fun than I expected. A lot of it thanks to fellow bloggers.

Let me know what you think....