Cheryl Riley: Interview
I was born in, and spent the first 40 years of my life in, Australia. Then I found the courage to pack up and leave. And since then my life has been more exciting than I ever dreamed it could possibly be.
Can you tell our readers about yourself and your blog?
Hello! I’m Cheryl. I’m Australian, and I’m currently living in Moscow, Russia, where I’ve been since 2007. I teach English here. I’m married to Olivier. He’s French, and he’s a French teacher (and chef!). We get a lot of questions about how and where we met, and why we’re here. I’ve answered some of this in my blog, but I think I could write a lot more about our story.
About my blog, Born in a Car. I was trying to think of a name, but I didn’t really know what I wanted to write about. So I wanted a generic name, which didn’t tie me in with any particular niche. And, since I was born in a car, I decided that it was a name that defined me (or at least my birth!). In my blog I write about living in Moscow, travelling, which I get to do a lot now that I live closer to the rest of the world (Australia is so far away from everywhere!), I feature some of my photos, although I’m not a photographer, and I like to share stories about my thoughts, about life, and about experiences I have.
Describe how did you first get into blogging?
I had a 5 week holiday in 2018, to Thailand, Vietnam, and Australia. After the holiday, I was thinking that there must be more to life than just working! I started reading a lot of blogs about traveling and other lifestyle blogs, looking for ideas on what to do with my life. Blogging sounded like fun, so I decided to give it a try.
Can you tell me some of your strengths that really helped you in blogging?
Being an English teacher probably helps with my grammar, spelling, and punctuation! I used to love English at school and was always writing poems and stories. I also don’t like to give up when I’ve started something, so I think that’s really helped. And I think I have an interesting life at the moment, so I never run out of things to write about.
How would you describe your blogging style?
I’m not sure how to answer this one. I could say it’s relaxed, some dry humor maybe, easy-going, not so serious. I’d like to think my style is entertaining and people get pleasure from reading it.
How do you manage time to run your blog efficiently?
Fortunately, I have quite a lot of free time at the moment. I don’t teach full-time, so I can easily find the time I need for all the tasks involved in blogging – and there are a lot of them! I like working at night, so I do a lot of it then. I keep lists and spreadsheets of various things, which keep me organized. I think being organized is the key.
How do you deal with pressure or stressful situations?
Badly. I usually sulk or get sad and moody. It’s something I have to work on. I try to avoid stressful situations.
Do you have any specific goals for the rest of this year?
Yes, my husband and I have decided to start another blog together. It’s going to be focused on getting older, and we’re going to have it bi-lingual, in French and English. It’s going to stretch my skills, so my main goal is to master the technological side of it. We’re hoping to generate an income from the new blog, whereas Born in a Car is probably not going to let us retire on what I make from it.
Did you have any professional help or did you create the blog yourself?
I did everything myself. I read a lot and asked a few questions. I subscribed to blogs about blogging and got check-lists and how-to guides about everything. I still have a lot to learn, though!
How active are you on a weekly basis? How often do you communicate with your followers?
I’m online all the time, except when I’m teaching. I post 1 – 3 times a week. I check and answer blog comments daily, as well as Facebook. I’m really enjoying the social aspect of blogging, although I’m rather asocial in real life.
What annoys you?
I’m easily annoyed, which is why I’m asocial. Thoughtless acts by thoughtless people, selfishness in public places, spitting in public places (a common habit in Russia), people leaving rubbish on the ground, people thinking that everything they see on the news is real. There’s a lot more, but they’re some of the big ones.
What inspires you?
My husband inspires me. He’s such a happy person. He wakes up happy every day. I try to do my best to make him happier, and to make him proud of me. And I try to be happy too.
You will find Cheryl via the following Social Media outlets:
If you wish to also participate in this 2019: Wednesday Interview Series please follow the link, and email me and consider it done. I would love to showcase you and your blog.