Your name: Amy Saunders
Name of your blog: Living with ME
Blog URL: www.livingwithme.blog
Blog social media accounts:
- Bloglovin’: @amysaunders08
- Facebook: @livingwithmeblog
- Twitter: @amysaunders08
- Instagram: @amysaunders08
- Pinterest: @amysaunders08
Let’s get to know YOU:
Tell us a little bit about yourself (mini bio):
I’m 21 years old, from a farm in Northumberland in the UK and I have a huge love for my dogs and cats. I was diagnosed with ME/CFS (Chronic Fatigue Syndrome) in July 2014, after getting Glandular Fever in 2012. I started my health and fitness journey 2 years ago, and despite it being a very long process, due to illness, I am making slow progress!
What do you do outside of blogging (think school or work):
I am currently studying English Language & Linguistics at York St John University and unfortunately, at the moment, I am unable to work due to illness – studying is enough for me thanks!
What do you like to do on your down time?
I love to blog (obviously!) and I’m an avid reader. I am currently in the Singing Society at Uni and I love to go to the gym, health permitting!
Chronic illness blogger but also health/fitness and lifestyle.
What’s the purpose of your blog?
I want to help and support others who may be going through similar things, and also create a little community for the chronically ill. I want my blog to be informative, with lots of advice that I’ve given based off my own personal experiences, but I also want my blog to be light-hearted and positive, so that readers can hopefully feel a bit better about everything.
Who’s your target?
My target are mainly those with a chronic illness, particularly ME/CFS, although because I write about all sorts of different things, I think there will be something for everybody!
What’s the best way for your audience to contact you?
You can contact me through the contact form on the blog, via email or on social media (mainly Facebook/Twitter)!
How would you describe your blogging style?
I’d like to think my blogging style is raw and honest, as well as being fun, light-hearted and informative.
When did you start blogging?
I started my blog in September 2015, at the beginning of my first year at University!
What inspired you to start blogging?
I’m not quite sure what inspired me to start blogging – I’ve always loved writing and loved the idea of a journal, it was just something that I never kept at so after struggling with my illness for just over a year, I decided that I would start a blog to document the ups and downs of living with a chronic illness!
What’s the biggest change in your life since you started blogging?
The biggest change has to be that I’m now part of this brilliant community of bloggers and other people with chronic illnesses, something which I’d never even imagined! There is so much love and support and I absolutely love getting to know everybody who I interact with, some on a daily basis now!
- Short term: At the moment I am really concentrating on my Blogging in Bed community which is specifically for chronic illness bloggers. I want to create a safe, non-judgemental place for people to come to and get help and support, as well as having their blog and social media promoted.
- Long term: Long term, I’d love to start having regular guest blogs on my blog, and continue doing guest blogs for other bloggers. I think that’s a great way to connect with other like-minded bloggers and I think it will create some amazing opportunities for me and my blog!
If you could start blogging all over again, what would you do differently?
I would 100% buy a domain a lot sooner – that has made such a huge difference I think, and I’m not so much happier with my blog than I ever have been before! I would also have got stuck into the blogging community a lot quicker – it took me a few months to really get into it all, but once I had, I never looked back!
How do you motivate yourself to continue blogging?
A lot of the time, I’m already motivated as I just love writing and blogging so much! When I am lacking in motivation though, I often just take a look back through everything I’ve done so far, and it reignites my spark!
What attributes has helped you become successful blogger?
I’d like to think that my honesty and (hopefully!) helpful advice has really helped grow my blog. I always try and see the positive in whatever situation, and always try and give a helpful piece of advice or lesson I’ve learnt in each post and I think that has definitely helped my readers.
How have you tried to increase your blog traffic? Which way has been the most successful?
Pinterest is wonderful for increasing blog traffic, and has definitely made a difference for me. Also, growing my twitter profile has helped as I’ve been able to connect an engage with a lot more bloggers, which in turn, as given me more traffic.
What’s your favourite social media platform and why?
My favourite has to be Twitter – having never really used it before I started my blog, I now use it several times a day to see what posts my favourite blogged have published recently, to interact with other bloggers, to take part in Twitter chats – there are just so many positives!
Most of your traffic comes from which social media platform?
At the moment, Pinterest and Facebook!
What’s your favourite blogging group on Facebook?
I love The Blogger Life and Chronic Illness Bloggers!
Do you have a freebie for your readers? If so, what is it? Do we need to subscribe to receive it?
No, but it is something that I am constantly thinking about doing!
What’s your greatest win so far with blogging?
When I get a beautiful, supportive comment when I’ve written a difficult, personal post. That means the absolute world to me, and reminds me why I started blogging in the first place.
What’s the biggest lesson you’ve so far with blogging?
Blogging has allowed me to see who really cares about me and my illness, and who doesn’t – those who do have followed my blog from the very beginning and constantly tell me how well I’m doing, and are so supportive and me, my illness, and my blog.
Has blogging surprised you in any way? If so, how?
Blogging surprised me in that I didn’t realise just how lovely complete strangers can be! People I’ve never met before comment and send such amazing messages, and it surprises me daily with how much support I get from people who I’ve never met, and probably never will!
How often do you publish a post?
I try and get one out every week, at least!
Have you had writer’s block? If so, how did you overcome it?
Yes! Every writer experiences writer’s block from time to time! For me, accepting it and taking a step back really helps put things in perspective. By taking the pressure off myself, I usually find my inspiration comes flooding back! Also, reading other blogs can really help to inspire you and give you some ideas!
Do you have a blogging schedule? Daily theme? Please share!
I have a monthly schedule that I try to stick to, and each main category I have on the blog has a dedicated day or two where something may be posted; if I post on a Monday/Tuesday it will be lifestyle, Wednesday/Thursday will be health & fitness, Friday will be university related, and the weekend will be posts about chronic illness. Does that make sense?!
Have you guest posted for someone?
Yes! Last year, although I have more to come in the next few weeks!
- For whom? Kristen Marie Coppens
- Blog URL: https://kristinmariecoppens.com/2016/05/18/guest-blogger-amy-saunders-of-living-with-me/
Do you accept guest posts? If yes, tell us about it!
Not at the moment, but it is currently in the planning so if you’re interested, keep an eye out!
Have you made money from blogging? If so, how?
How long had you been blogging before you made any money?
Who’s your favourite blogger before you started blogging and why? (Name and blog URL)
My absolute favourite blogger was Paula over at Thirteen Thoughts (thirteenthoughts.com)! I just thought her and her blog were absolutely incredible and I loved reading all of her posts, I still do!
Who’s your favourite blogger now and why? (Name and blog URL)
Now, my favourite is Lauren at Lauren’s Looks (itslittlelauren.co.uk). She also has ME/CFS, and not only is her instagram just beautiful, her posts are so incredibly inspiring! She talks honestly about chronic illness, but also about anything else she might want to write about, and I just love everything about her and her blog!
What type of blogs are you interested in reading and why?
I love lifestyle blogs, and blogs with a little bit of everything in! Also, it goes without saying, but I love chronic illness blogs, they’re all so incredibly inspiring!
List the top 5 blogs you are reading currently: (Names and blog URLs)
- Blonde Voyage (blondevoyage.org)
- Emily Becca (emilybecca.com)
- Issy Belle Fox (issybellefox.com)
- Charlene McElhinney (charlenemcelhinney.co.uk)
- Its Neecola (itsneecola.com)
Give advice to someone who wants to start blogging:
Don’t pressure yourself! A few truly inspired, well-thought out blog posts are so much better than a lot of forced posts which don’t really flow. Your readers will understand if you need to take a couple of weeks off, and pressuring yourself will only make things worse!
Tell us one thing your readers don’t know about you:
I am OBSESSED with Friends (the TV show) – it is my go-to series when I’m ill/down/bored, whatever I’m feeling basically!
Anything else you’d like to share with us? Go for it!!!
I have my own Facebook group and a second Twitter profile dedicated to chronic illness bloggers called Blogging in Bed! You can follow on Twitter and get your tweets promoted and retweeted, and you can promote your latest blog posts on the Facebook page for support too! I’m really keen to grow this little community so please feel free to get involved!
Leave a message for your readers:
Thank you all so so much for all your love and support! It means the absolutely world to me that you read and love my blog and I’m really looking forward to see where it takes me in the future!