Author Interview- Caitlyn Siehl !

Hello everyone ! I am here with another interview today, this time w/ Caitlyn Siehl. She is a poet who I admire so, so much. I had the pleasure of meeting her a few months back, and she is so sweet.

More about Caitlyn: Caitlyn Siehl is a writer and editor from New Jersey who originally gained traction in the literary scene via her poetry blog, which was created in 2011. She is now the author of two bestselling poetry collections; What We Buried and Crybaby. Her fiction has been featured in Hooligan Magazine and is forthcoming in the anthology [Dis]Connected: Volume II. She has also worked as a Managing Editor of Persephone’s Daughters literary magazine, been co-editor of two poetry anthologies (Literary Sexts and Literary Sexts 2), and been a guest poetry judge at L’Éphémère Review.

Caitlyn is currently working on new fiction, several secret poetry projects, and expanding her book Crybaby for it’s re-release as a second edition. ​In her limited free time, she enjoys driving across the country to look at bigger, better trees and listening to D&D podcasts.

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Can you start by introducing yourself and what you do?

Well hi there! My name is Caitlyn Siehl and I’m a writer. I started out posting angsty poetry on Tumblr, and it grew into a huge passion for me. I’m branching out into prose as well, which is exciting for me.

At what age did you start writing poetry, and why did you start?

I started writing poetry when I was 17. I had just started my first year of college and I was feeling very lonely and isolated, so I decided to cry about it on the internet and, guess what? It worked! I met so many people who I’m still friends with today.

What has the publishing process been like for you? What was the hardest part?

I kind of got lucky my first time around. My blog really took off, and after my work had circulated around the internet, I was contacted by a small press and asked to publish a book with them. It was an amazing experience, and one I wouldn’t change for anything. The hardest part was putting the poems in an order that actually told a story. Part of me wanted to just throw a bunch of poems on the paper, but I decided that I wanted them to fit into a larger narrative.

What was the best part?

All of it. Every second. Signing preorders, talking to people who loved it, seeing people get tattoos of my words. I loved all of it.

Are you working on any projects right now, and can you share anything about them with us?

I’m working on a second edition of my second book, “Crybaby,” as well as a secret joint poetry collection with a writer friend of mine. Keep it on the down low! :)

Where do you see yourself in 5 years?

I see myself with several poetry books under my belt, and at least one novel out in the world. I have so many projects that I hope come to fruition in the next 5 years.

Where does the inspiration come from? Are most of your poems based on real life or fiction?

The inspiration comes at random times. Sometimes I’ll hear a song or a line from a song and an entire experience that I forgot about will flood back into my head. And it’s definitely a mixture of both real life and fiction. Most of the time it’s easier to tell the truth by talking around it; fictionalizing certain parts so that it’s easier to talk about. Not always, but sometimes.

Who are some of your favorite poets?

Oof, too many to count! A few off the top of my head: Sandra Cisneros, Richard Siken, Margaret Atwood, Bob Hicok, Anne Carson, and Aracelis Girmay.

What are your goals (writing or life wise) for this year?

I’m keeping my goals rather small and attainable this year. I’m trying to put out two collections of poetry and I’m also trying to get my novel started.

Finally, what advice/tips do you have for people who are just starting out with poetry?

It’s hard but it’s worth it. Social media is its own beast and it can be really discouraging when you’re just starting out and trying to make a name for yourself. Be patient. Tell your truth. Take care of yourself. Remember why you started and don’t ever forget it. Keep going.

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Thank you so much Caitlyn! I’m honored that you agreed to do this interview, and I loved all of your answers :)

I have another interview lined up soon, and I’m so excited to share it with you guys, so be sure to come back in two weeks to check that one out!

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Interview w/ Poet Rachel Clift- Poet Series #1 // The Interviews Are Back !

If you’ve been following my blog for long enough, you know that I used to do interviews very frequently- with Youtubers, Bloggers, Authors, Poets, etc.

I miss sharing those because I think that they can be very inspirational, and in my opinion, they’re super interesting! I like to get to know the people I look up to better, and this is one way to do that. If you want to check out more interviews I’ve done, you can find them under the “lifestyle” tab at the top of my site.

I decided that I wanted to do a “poet series” of interviews since I am currently working on my own poetry collection. This is a great way to highlight some poets that I personally love, and hopefully some of you can connect to them as well!

Today I have a poet who I’ve followed on Instagram for a really long time. She is so sweet and such an amazing writer. Let’s go meet her!

First, can you start off by introducing yourself and what you do?

I go by R. Clift, but you can just call me Rachel. I’m a poet, writer, traveller, and storyteller. I’ve been using social media for about a year now as a tool to reach people and hopefully offer some inspiration and a sense of togetherness.

How long have you been writing and why did you start?

I’ve been writing poetry since January of 2017, but I’ve been enchanted by stories since before I could speak. I began writing poetry kind of on a whim, I signed up for a class at my university last minute and ended up with a professor who changed my life. His name was Arthur Smith, he was incredible. He passed away last November. I wish you could’ve met him.

Where do you get the inspiration for your poetry?

It depends on the day, it can be anything from a falling leaf to the loss of a family member. Every poem I write has a backstory and probably about 90% relate directly to a person or event in my life. A part of me wants to start sharing some of the backstories, but I haven’t quite decided how yet.

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What are your plans for your writing this year?

I just announced that my first book will be released this summer! So that’s exciting. More news will be coming soon on that. I have a couple more projects in the works too, but they’re not ready for the light so for now just keep close. One day they will be.

What tips do you have for someone just getting into writing poetry?

Be honest with yourself and your words. Write every day, even if it’s just a to-do list in your journal. If you make it a part of your routine, it will come even more naturally to you. If you get blocked, go experience something new— draw inspiration from that. Find the beauty, the poetry, in the ordinary and mundane. I promise it’s there if you pay attention. As long as you have the courage to put a pen on paper, you’re headed in the right direction.

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Thank you so much to Rachel for taking part in this interview! Make sure you check out her Instagram and give her a follow :) See you next Tuesday!

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Booktuber Interview- Julia Sapphire

Hey everyone! As promised, I am here with another interview :) This time with Julia Sapphire, who has an amazing Booktube channel. I highly recommend checking her channel out! 

Let’s get into the questions!

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First, can you introduce yourself and what you do on the internet?

Hello, my name is Julia Sapphire! I make bookish videos on YouTube and am apart of the BookTube community. I upload videos such as, reading wrap ups, hauls, tbr’s (to be read), Stephen King videos, book recommendations videos, etc. I have been making videos for over three years now and started at the age of thirteen, so you definitely see me grow up online a little bit haha.

Obviously, anyone who has checked out your channel knows you love Stephen King. Which book would you recommend for someone who has never read any of his works?

Haha, yes! This is a question I get asked quite a bit and always have trouble answering. I would say that Carrie is a great start for some, it is where I started myself! It is his debut novel and one of his shorter novels for sure. You can totally see him progress as a writer and a person as you continue reading his books. I also suggest Mr. Mercedes, more for people who don’t want to jump into straight-up horror. It is more of a mystery-suspense book and follows a detective! It is blunt and intense but its not considered “horror” so take that as you will :)

Have you been to any bookish events in the past and do you plan on going to any this year?

I have been to book signings, four in the past! I have been to one with Kendare Blake and Lauren Oliver, another with Angie Thomas, Julie Murphy and Becky Albertilli, as well as a Sarah J. Maas signing! Not long ago I also attended the book signing for Zenith by Sasha Alsberg and Lindsay Cummings. I do plan on attending Bookcon this June and am super excited but kind of nervous haha.

What are your plans and goals for your channel for 2018?

Ouu I love planning so I did make some channel goals for 2018. *whispers* I kinda sorta have a video on it if you’re interested… ;) My main goals though are to reach 10k subscribers (which I have surpassed!) and really take my viewers feedback and requests to improve my channel more in 2018!

What are your top 3 favorite King books?

Oh gosh!! I get asked this probably daily and typically refuse to answer lol. I will say some of my favourites but I cannot choose an order!! The Shining, Mr Mercedes, Misery, IT and Rose Madder are all great reads! Salems’ Lot is excellent as well!

If you could live in any book world, which would you pick and why?

I am going to go with a classic YA series and say the Shadowhunter world from Cassandra Clare’s books! It is more urban fantasy so it is set in our world but I would love to be apart of the life Jace and everyone is from. It would be super cool to be a Shadowhunter or a vampire or even a warlock! It is probably a typically answer but those books have made quite the impact on my reading and my life in general!

How did you get into reading?

I got into reading when I read Carrie actually! I was researching popular horror films when I was around ten years old and saw Carrie, so I decided to check out the book! I read it in like a day which at the time has never happened! See I did not grow up with Harry Potter or Percy Jackson, I read Goosebumps, the Spiderwick Chronicles and Judy Blum when I was younger. Carrie did really spark my love for his books and for books in general! What got me into YA fiction was the Visions trilogy by  Lisa Mcmann. It was one of the first book series that I adored, I could relate to the main character and loved the boy in the book haha.

I know you live in Canada, so have you ever been to the US and if so, where?

Yes, I am from Canada! I have not been to the US much at all… I have been to Buffalo which is right outside the Niagara Falls border in Canada just to shop for a day, that’s about it though!

What do you see yourself pursuing as a future career? Do you think it would be related to books?

I see myself doing psychology or criminology in the future. I have wanted to pursue this as a career for many years now and books have helped give me new perspectives and increased my interest in these areas. I have thought about working in publishing, it would obviously be something I am passionate about. As for writing, people think that because I read my goal is to become a writer which has not really been the case… mind you I am sixteen so this could change haha! I could see myself writing poetry though.

Finally, what advice would you give someone who wants to start a booktube channel?

I love this question! I think you just have to do it, put your fit in the door kind of thing. It can be scary putting yourself online but it is so much fun and you can really learn things about yourself and grow as a person. Try not to think about subscribers or making money right off the bat. Its just not how it works and people can tell if you are not genuine. I would say have fun, interact in the community and to always share your honest thoughts on a book during a review!!
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Thank you so much to Julia for doing this interview! It was a lot of fun :) Once again, make sure to go check out her channel! If you would like me to do more interviews like this one, please leave a comment down below.
Xo, Jessica

Interview With a Booktuber- Kat

You might not remember this, but I used to do a series of interviews on my blog with different poets, youtubers, authors, etc. It has been MONTHS since my last one. BUT, I have decided to restart the series, and I have an amazing interview for you guys today that I am so excited for :)

Meet Kat, or paperbackdreams. She is super sweet and I absolutely love her videos! Please check her channel out. Now, let’s get into the interview!

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First, can you introduce yourself to everyone?

My name’s Kat. I’m 18, and I’m a Booktuber/Bookstagrammer/General Bookish Internet User.

Why did you decide to start a Youtube channel (and specifically Booktube)?

Youtube came to me sometime in middle school when I discovered Danisnotonfire and AmazingPhil. They were the start of my internet obsession along with the desire to start a channel of my own, but I didn’t know what kind of videos were right for me to make. I spent my time watching really popular YouTubers for years until the last half of 2013 when I randomly decided to type “bookshelf tour” into the search bar (completely sure that such a thing didn’t exist) and found one of the super popular booktubers. This spurred me on to discover the entirety of the community, and I just spent all the years between my discovery and my first video working up the courage to sit in front of my camera and film.

What are your favorite genres to read?

I am currently trying to branch out my genre reading and have recently discovered my love for thriller and suspense novels. I also love YA fantasy, paranormal, and darker contemporaries.

How has Booktube impacted your life?

This is a pretty average answer, but Booktube has helped me realize that my avid reading is not as strange as I once thought was. It’s allowed me to meet some really cool people who have just as much to say about books and fandoms as I do. Also, I’ve learned a ton about reviewing books and writing!

Where do you see yourself in the next 3 years?

I’m not exactly sure. Probably a tired college student who will have hopefully decided what I want to major in and where I want to go in life. Maybe. And I better still be reading as much as I do now or else my future self better watch her back.

Have you always been an avid reader or did this interest just begin recently?

I’ve been reading for pretty much as long as I can remember. My parents read to me when I was young, and my sister also loves to read, so I grew up around books, and from the point that I learned to comprehend words on my own I would just read and reread books constantly.

What is your favorite book of 2018 thus far?

It’s currently a tie between Beneath the Sugar Sky by Seanan McGuire and The Apocalypse of Elena Mendoza by Shaun David Hutchinson.

What are some items on your bucket list for both 2018 and your life?

I have too many things on my bucket list that will probably never happen because I’m not super great at following through, but some of my book-related goals are to one day interview an author somehow and maybe write a thing one day. I don’t know what kind of thing, but a thing.

I know you have mentioned that We Are the Ants is your favorite book at the moment. I have just begun reading it myself recently and can understand the hype. What specifically made it a favorite of yours?

To put it very briefly, We Are the Ants surprised me. It’s got so many different storylines going on and all connecting back to this one boy. It’s a lot to take in in the story, but to me it was just about this kid who was kind of lost and hurt, and who didn’t know what to do, but needed to make a decision. All of his thoughts and emotions lined right up with a lot of what I felt/feel and his bitter sarcasm and pessimism was incredible to read because I felt like I was the one talking. It came to me at the perfect time and I know it’s a favorite because I’m not scared of it. There are other books that I’ve read, loved, and never touched again because I have a feeling that if I do I’ll probably find some way to criticize them, and while We Are the Ants is certainly not a perfect book, I am almost certain that if I were to read it again (which I plan to do) I would love it just as much as the first time.

Finally, what advice would you give to someone who is just starting a Booktube channel?

If you want to start a channel, just do it. Terrible advice, but it’s the truest thing I can say. You don’t have to make a big introduction video, or have a fancy camera and lights, or even know exactly what you want to say. I’ve found that if you just sit down in front of some kind of recording device and start talking about books you love (or maybe some books you don’t love) all the rest will follow.

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HUGE thank you to Kat for agreeing to do this interview. It was so fun reading all of her answers. Please be sure to check out her channel, and maybe even leave her a comment saying you came from my blog!

If there is anyone you would want me to interview next, let me know in the comments :) I already have the next one planned!

xo, Jess

 

Interview- Ashley’s Lens!

Yay! I finally have another interview :) This one is with a Youtuber I recently found, whose videos are so incredible and inspiring. Let’s just get into it.
I know you have a Youtube channel (which you can check out here), could you tell everyone what type of videos you post?
Yes I do :) I post stuff about art, photography, film, music, and life. I like to talk about stuff that I know will help people, concerning depression and anxiety, just to be an online friend for some people. But also about more uplifting things like books and my general thoughts on life. From time to time I also sing and post covers or original songs. I try not to be tied down by one specific thing though.
Why did you decide to start a Youtube channel? Where did the idea to make one come from?
I started Youtube because of music, actually. When i was around 12, I never used to watch “Youtubers” back then, but as i started posting (really crappy) singing videos, i soon began to lose interest because the music community on Youtube is extremely cut throat and very demotivating. So I took a 1 year hiatus and fell in love with the youtube community as an audience member and learnt the responsibility, passion and dedication a creator must have – I came back with film, my first “short film” called Letter to September around a year ago (I think, maybe 2). Then, I was into Youtube for the right reasons, and it took me till January 2017 to starting posting every Monday (people that don’t do Youtube will never understand how much commitment that takes)  and now here I am.
You posted a brilliant short film titled “Things We Didn’t Say.” How long did that take you to plan out and write?
Before that film i had been planning another film, more classical than Things We Didn’t Say, with a cast and characters and dialogue. However, I started getting stuck at every crossroad and couldn’t write it as one cohesive thought. Thats when the “incident” that inspired the film happened, right when I had given up on my previous idea. It took me about 2 weeks to write, taking some lines from previous unshared work. It also took about 6 re-writes in those 2 weeks and I tried 4 different sets. It was a short but complex and flowing process, i loved every second of it and can’t wait for the next one.
Where do you get the inspiration for your videos from?
Inspiration can’t be pinned for me, it comes just when I don’t want it to. If I try force it, it never comes. I was feeling rather depressed today for the first time in a while actually, and I went down to the beach because I really needed air and thought I might puke, and sitting there in self misery and disgust I came up with a stellar idea for my next writing project. Inspiration comes from dark places, light places, all over really.
What are some of the challenges of having a Youtube? Has there ever been a time when you wanted to quit?
Ha. Yes and No. Youtube is kind of like all hobbies/jobs. There are parts that you hate and parts that make it all worth it. I used to hate coming up with ideas and that’s what stopped me from uploading often but now I just turn the camera on and talk. Whether it’s cohesive or not – doesn’t matter. If you go into youtube completely committed and completely careless as to what the people want, letting what happens happen but on a regular basis, making sure you do it for you and no one else – there really is no downside. I do it to create things and to keep me healthy.
What is your favorite part about Youtube?
Just with my small subscriber base i have a new family. For example;  I have Mark that always comments an essay about his life, and I love learning about him every week. I have Dylan that always snapchats me. I have Sophie who always comments “YAAS”. I have Lola that always writes three honest lines. and so many more. I’ve made so many cool friends. Unlike school, where you’re forced to make friends with strangers, youtube allows you to connect to people who are just like you.
Are you working on any big projects at the moment that you plan on putting out into the world soon?
numero uno – more classic short films
numero dos – (merchandise… how exciting!)
numero tres – more poetry and monologue films
How do you unwind/relax after a hard day? What are some of your tips for relieving stress?
Going to be honest, I’m not good at relieving stress because I don’t really let anything harsh my mellow. School doesn’t stress me because I don’t think it’s that important in the grand scheme of things, but I still try my best. I just try my best at everything I do. If I try my best, I have nothing to stress about. Even if my best isn’t “up to standard”, I do what I can and I’m happy with that.
Where do you see yourself in the next few years? What do you hope to do in the future?
I hope to be happy, most of all. Living somewhere busy in my own swanky apartment with lots of cats and plants and stuff from Pinterest, you know. But firstly happy, that’s what’s most important to me. I also hope I’ll be creating stuff all the time, and I hope one day I can support my family with my art (as a HAPPY artist).
Finally, if you’re not filming a video, what are you doing?
Napping with my cats: Lilly and Cuddles. Shoutout to the real inspiration for my happiness.
Thank you so much Ashley! It was a pleasure to have you featured on here. You’re responses are amazing, and I hope someone gets some inspiration from them.
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Interview with Poet Rachel Aquino

It’s been a long time since I’ve done an interview on here, but I’m back with another one. This time, with poet and self-published author Rachel Aquino!
First, can you introduce yourself and what you do?
I’m Rachel Lazatin Aquino, I’m an indie author, and I wrote the book ‘Pieces of me’.
When did you first begin writing poetry?
I began writing at the beginning of 2013, but wrote consistently at the beginning of 2015.
Was self-publishing difficult? What was the process like?
Self publishing definitely requires a lot of trial and error. It was hard work, but very much worth it! I had to figure out the process as i went, and  I asked a lot of talented writers for help as well.
What tips do you have for people who want to self-publish?
I advise that you take your time. I know how exciting everything can be, but don’t rush. Make sure every detail is as pristine as possible, and at 100% best quality you can produce!
Where do you get inspiration for your poetry?
I was heavily inspired by the writings of Rupi Kaur, and inspired/introduced to go about self publishing by Jennae Cecelia.
Can you share some poetry from your book with us?
Yes! My Instagram page @rach.lazatin has a lot of excerpts from my book and poetry I’ve written. I would love for you guys to see it.
What do you plan on doing after high school?
I plan on going to college and pursuing a degree in psychology. I don’t know where life will take me in the end but I will continue to pursue my passions and curiosities through writing, painting, drawing and photography.
What are some of your goals for the future with your writing?
I want to get my book and poetry more well known, and inspire young adults! It’s always been my main goal to positively  impact someone’s life through my writing. I’m currently working on my second book and hopefully both my books impact and connect greatly with my readers.
How long did it take to write your book?
The writings in my book are from a journal I had written in for over a year, starting at the beginning of 2015.
Who are some of your favorite poets?
My absolute favorite poet is Rupi Kaur, I definitely connect with her book on a very deep level, and I look up to her style and art as inspiration.
Thank you so much to Rachel! Don’t forget to check out her book; I can assure you that it is amazing.

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Interview With Poet Jennae Cecelia

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I recently had the chance to ask Jennae Cecelia some questions, so I want to give a huge thank you to her! You can check out her website here, and make sure to purchase her first book as well!

First, can you introduce yourself and what you do?
My name is Jennae Cecelia and I am a writer! I currently am most passionate about poetry but I also dabble into short story writing occasionally. In April of 2016, I self-published my first poetry book titled, Bright Minds Empty Souls.  It consists of over 200 poems about love, heartbreak, and coming of age. I also have a second poetry book that will be coming out October of 2016.

How long have you been writing poetry?
I have journaled since late middle school into early high school. Often times, I was finding myself writing more in a poetic form than journal format.  However, I didn’t start taking poetry seriously until about two years ago when I started reading poetry online, and thought, “hey, that is exactly what I want to do.”  From then on, I  pieced together and created all the poems in my first book.  Now writing poetry isn’t just a hobby for me, it’s my passion and career.

Where do you get inspiration for your poetry?
Most of my inspiration comes from real life experiences of my own.  Whether it is something heavy on my heart, or humorous, I write it down.  I also would get a lot of ideas for poems from stories I would hear friends tell me, or simply from my imagination.  There seems to be this stigma around poetry that if it is from the author’s own experience, it may not be understood by the audience.

However, I find we all have so many stories to tell and I like that I can piece words together or people who might not be able to themselves.

For instance, I wrote a poem a few months back about my grandma dying. Instantly, I got a message on Instagram from a girl telling me that poem truly helped with her move from one state of her life to another.  Although she herself wasn’t dying, this girl who wrote me felt an instant connection with my words.  I loved that! I loved, the fact that she was able to relate to something so personal to me but in her own way.

How often do you write?
There was a line in a book I read recently called, A Writer’s Book of Days that says, “Nulla dies sine linea” which means, “never a day without a line.”  I strongly live by this quote.  Even before reading it, that is exactly how I feel.  If you are a writer, or want to be better at writing, don’t ever go a day without writing at least a line.  One line is often my best beginning.  Most of my poems start from one line I typed in my phone and then went back on later to expand that thought.

What tips do you have for young writers trying to get their work out?
My best advice for young writers is to work extremely hard.  Getting your work out there is not a simple process.  I wish I could say that it is but, it takes effort.  I would advise going the self-publishing route to start out because it allows you full control over what you are producing but, you also are able to reach a very large audience if you put it on websites like, Amazon. Mostly, just believe in yourself and know if you truly want to pursue writing than do it, but do it with 100% of all your effort.

If you like the interviews I do, and want me to do more, be sure to let me know in the comments. Also, if you have any drawings, writing pieces, poems, etc; please email them to kissesfromjess@gmail.com to possibly be featured!

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Interview- Cathleen Slagle

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Hi everyone, today I got the chance to interview Cathleen Slagle, a fellow blogger. I did a few more interviews in the past (you can check them out under the category “entertainment”). I hope you enjoy!

First, can you introduce yourself and your blog?

Howdy there! I’m Cathleen Slagle and I’m the blogger behind Classy Cathleen. I’m 16 and a rising junior in high school from Columbia, South Carolina. I am a student, photographer, and active volunteer in various community service projects and organizations.

You’re a young, successful blogger, but is it ever difficult to manage a blog while being a high school student? If so, how do you handle it?
Balancing and time management have always been difficult for me, and I knew in 8th grade when I started this blog that I would struggle finding time for everything. High school hasn’t been any easier as far as balancing goes. AP classes, Yearbook, daily homework assignments and deadlines all add up insanely quickly and it can be hard to find time to work on the things that I enjoy doing. I’m not a good person to share time management and balancing tips because I’m currently answering these questions while watching an episode of the office and my elbow is resting on the APUSH Summer work that should be a priority right now…. However, I’ve learned that turning off my phone and giving it to my parents or leaving it on the kitchen table really helps me get stuff done quickly and efficiently. I’ve found that for me, I am not capable of getting homework done while laying down or sitting in bed. I have to, MUST, be sitting upright at my desk before anything can get crossed off the to do list. I have a habit of falling asleep much too quickly when I’m comfortably working. Often times one blog post has taken me an hour daily all week before its ready to publish, during the school year. It’s frustrating because of the time required in both school and blogging is more hours than I have in a day, but somehow everything gets done.
What’s your favorite part of blogging?
I love being able to share my words and photographs with the world.
Where do you get your inspiration to blog from?
My inspiration comes from long hikes in the woods or quiet moments spent on a screened in porch. It comes from s’mores and spending time with my family. Inspiration hits while I’m volunteering or working to make my community a better place. But the majority of my inspiration comes when I am in the shower washing my hair. Because I consider myself a lifestyle blogger, I have so much freedom in what I choose to write about because I write about myself and my adventures!
What are some of your favorite blogs to read?
I know you’re probably looking for me to include a list of 5-10 blogs that I check on the daily, but I don’t want to share my favorites and hurt anyone’s feelings. I read COUNTLESS blogs for all different purposes and I feel reading all of them have enriched me in some way. I typically find myself reading lifestyle blogs because I love people. I love individuality and different voices that people have when they write. I also love seeing the places that these bloggers live and learning about where they came from, how they were raised, the things that they love, etc. etc.
What career do you hope to pursue in the future?
I have so many ideas for future careers but they’re all kind of similar… Journalism, marketing, public relations, mass communications, photography, Spanish, and Business are all majors that I’m looking for in colleges currently so that gives you an idea of what I’m looking to do professionally. I’m 16 so I have no definite answer right now.
How did you get into blogging?
When I was 13 I needed a creative outlet. DESPERATELY. I’m not your average anything, so growing up and going to an average school full of average people doing average things, and I’m not good at pretending to be anyone other than myself. Blogging allowed me to begin the process of making a name for myself at age 13.
What tips do you have for beginner bloggers?
My biggest advice to all beginning bloggers is that they need to be themselves. It’s crucial. Because there are already so many bloggers on the internet, you have to be your own unique self or you’ll get lost in the mix. Success comes from Authenticity.
What are your plans for your blog in the future?
Eventually, I wish to start my own t-shirt company, grow as a photographer, as well as continue to promote the importance of community service.  I’m currently the social director at a non profit organization that my family founded, and I photograph rescue animals from a local rescue. Honestly, I try not to plan or have an “end goal” set for myself because I figure everything out as I go along. All I can promise is… It’ll be on the blog!
Thank you so much Cathleen for being a part of my blog! To check out her blog, you can click here! If you guys like these interviews, let me know by giving this post a like :)
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Youtube Interview- Quincie and Candice

I am so so excited to share this interview for you guys with one of my favorite youtube channels- Quincie and Candice. With nearly 50,000 subscribers, these two besties share a passion for beauty, and want to spread their positivity to others! I want to thank them both for allowing me to interview them, too because this was such an awesome opportunity! Let’s get started.


1. Hi, I’m Jessica, and I am so excited to be interviewing you both! First, can you guys introduce yourselves and your channel?
– Hi Jessica – omg you’re so cute. We feel so honored to be apart of your blog, thank you so much for thinking of us :) We’re Quincie and Candice & we’re best friends who share a channel together. To sum up our channel, it’s pretty much just a combination of lifestyle, beauty, & DIY videos :)

2. What made you want to start a youtube channel?
– It’s actually so funny because ever since we became friends, we had a mutual interest in filming videos. At first, we always did music videos to songs we loved at the time, but once we learned about the Youtube community we immediately knew we wanted to become apart of that.

3. What are the struggles of having a shared youtube channel?
– Since we’re so much alike and have a lot in common, we don’t have many struggles. That’s actually the best part about doing this together because it’s such a mutual passion.

4. What is your favorite video to film?
– Any type of video that allows us to get out of the house and film. It’s so much fun to look back at videos that we make while we’re out in town rather than just sitting in our bedroom.

5. Do you guys think you will eventually have separate channels?
– Honestly, we don’t ever see that happening. We are best friends that like to stick together and for us, that’s the fun part about doing Youtube :)

6. How did you both meet?
– We actually went to school together our whole lives & lived only a block away from one another as kids. It wasn’t until 9th grade when we met in the school bathroom that we actually hit it off and since then we’ve been inseparable.

7. What are your goals for your channel in the future?
– Our biggest goal is to inspire our viewers to always believe in themselves & accept who they are :) What more could we want?

8. How would you describe your styles?
– Candice stays more on the Chic side of style, while I’m more of an urban street style.

9. Do you have any tips for people who want to start youtube channels?
– Starting a Youtube channel can be incredibly difficult and at times frustrating. You have to make sure that you’re doing it for you and not expecting to become “Youtube Famous.” Regardless if you work hard at something you love you can never fail :) I know everyone says this, but lighting takes a HUGE role in filming videos. Natural lighting is the best, so take advantage of that. Don’t let the fear of not having a nice camera or lens stop you from creating a channel. We would totally suggest making a few videos with what you have (Phone, Computer, Powershots, Etc) before investing in a high-end camera. Try & get a feel for Youtube and see if you like it before spending a lot on equipment :)

10. Who are your favorite Youtubers?
– Both of us agree that it would be absolutely impossible to only pick a few as there are so many inspiring Youtubers :)

Once again, thank you both for doing this interview, I am a HUGE fan of your channel! And thank you to everyone for reading, leave requests in the comments below.

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Interview W/ Fashion Blogger Emma Werner!

Hi guys! I am back with another blog and this time I’m doing something a little different! I interviewed Emma Werner, the writer of Fashion Hot Box, about her job and her experience in the fashion world! If you would like for me to do more interviews like this one, be sure to like this post or comment below who I should interview next!

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First, can you introduce yourself and what you do?

My name is Emma Werner and I am a New York City fashion blogger (www.fashionhotbox.com), store owner (www.shopfashionhotbox.com), and internet entrepreneur!

What are your goals for the next 5-10 years?

I would love to concentrate on developing my store into a large online retail spot—including both men’s and women’s clothing. I would also love to incorporate some of my own designs and my own line eventually. I also am really interested in internet and social media marketing, so I would like to write some E-Books and “How-To” guides for new bloggers or entrepreneurs who want to learn how to grow their online businesses efficiently and effectively.

What got you started in fashion blogging?

I’ve always loved fashion, and I felt like I needed a creative outlet. I decided to start my website my senior year of college—I was a psychology major and didn’t have many opportunities to express my creative side through schoolwork, so I decided to create a blog and post pictures of my favorite outfits and trends. I’m SO glad I did it!

What is your favorite part about what you do?

Having created something that is my own and that I have full control and creative license over. Everyone wants to be their own boss, and if you can’t do it in your full-time job, you might as well do it through a different outlet—such as blogging. It’s a great way for me to connect with new people, discover new trends and ideas that I wouldn’t otherwise have known about if I wasn’t immersed in the blogging world, and generally has been a great way to learn about building a business from scratch.

Do you have any fashion inspirations and what inspires your blog posts?

I absolutely love stalking outfits on Pinterest and Instagram. Saboskirt and Nastygal are some of my favorite designer influences, and I also enjoy a lot of street style blogs. I would say that my blog posts are mostly inspired by things that I find to be helpful. For example, this past summer I was stalking a bunch of new swimwear designers on Instagram and I was thinking about how I wished I just had one easy list of all of them together. That’s when I got the idea to write this post: http://fashionhotbox.com/17-top-swimwear-brands-you-need-to-know-about/, in which I compiled a list of all my favorite swimwear designers. I just love making helpful posts that a lot of people (like me) will find useful.

How would you describe your personal style?

I would describe my style as edgy feminine. I love traditionally feminine colors and cuts, but also enjoy layering edgier pieces over them. For example, I recently wore a gorgeous NBD chiffon maxi dress with a black leather biker jacket and leather booties. I just like incorporating a little element of surprise or a pushing of the envelope in my style.

What is the hardest part of blogging?

Posting regularly and consistently. Blogging does require a lot of creative energy and time, and it’s hard to continue to publish high-quality posts when you’ve had a bad week and “aren’t in the mood,” or when your full-time job has been super busy and you literally don’t have the time to write new content. It’s really hard to push yourself through that and keep the momentum up, but I’ve learned ways to deal with this, including writing and scheduling posts ahead of time during the weekend so that if I’m crushed with a busy or bad week, my blog isn’t affected.

What is one piece of advice you would give to someone wanting to pursue a fashion career?

I think it really depends on what kind of career you want to pursue in fashion. I was never particularly interested in entering the fashion corporate world because I have not heard great things, but I absolutely love being my own “independent contractor” in the fashion world. It’s wonderful to work with brands on my own terms and with my own creative license. So, I would recommend starting your own blog in order to have that creative freedom and to control your image and experience the fashion world from a more liberating perspective. If you do choose to create a blog or do something online related to fashion, I want to emphasize the importance of social media and connecting with others in the industry! I would not be where I am today without connecting with and supporting fellow bloggers—it is really a great community and everyone does want to help each other out. Make sure you take advantage of every social media platform (Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Tumblr, Pinterest)—these are essential keys to the growth and development of your following. And, lastly, have a real and authentic voice. Give something unique to the community that can’t be found elsewhere, and inject a little personality into everything you blog about!

Thank you so much, Emma, for doing this little interview with me! It was a ton of fun working with you, and reading all of your responses! I hope the rest of you found this helpful, and definitely go check out Emma’s blog by pressing here!

Xo, Jessica :)