With this “Chill Chat With Cool Bloggers” series, I have featured many blogger friends so far. For the first time, I feel extremely happy to feature my best blogging friend and loving soul, Ms. Shalini. R of “Kohl Eyed Me” and “Something’s Cooking“.Shalini is my friend right from her first blog and her army wife’s posts are my favorites. Did I mention that I am a big fan of her Muffy?
Shalini blogs about Lifestyle and Food, respectively that are most appreciated. Today I am very much delighted to feature Ms. Shalini to our readers. We had our chat to know more about her successful blogging mantra and her fun side too. Carry on, to enjoy her words of blogging wisdom.
Chill Chat With Cool Blogger Ms. Shalini
Hello, Shalini Tell us a little bit about yourself.
Ms. Shalini: Hi, I am Shalini – a blogger by passion and a nomad by choice! I have a double Bachelors’s and a post-graduate degree with a decade long experience in the IT field. I’m a proud Army Wife, a trained classical dancer, and an aspiring YouTuber. I’ve been blogging for seven years and my ardent love for books, DIY, travel, and food can be seen on my blogs – Kohl Eyed Me and Something’s Cooking. When I’m not cooking up a storm or writing my heart out, I can be found with my nose buried in a book and my Golden Retriever Mufasa, resting his face on my lap.
Q1. An ever since moment in your blogger life or your turning point in blogging.
Ms. Shalini: This question actually got me thinking. Whether it was going self-hosted or joining writing communities they have all helped me in some way or the other. But I am going to quote something that had happened a few years ago when I had only started my blogging journey. I had attended a well-known Blogging conference but was a little skeptical in meeting bloggers. Ironical, I know! But to my surprise, many people came up to me and talked to me about my blogs and about the writing contests that I had won. They had even quoted my articles! Until then, I didn’t know that people actually read my blogs.
Q2. Your definition of blog success.
Ms. Shalini: I say this with all honesty, it is not when I get featured as one of the Top Ten South Indian Culinary Blogs or being a Finalist in a popular award category that I feel mighty happy. It is when I receive emails from readers saying they relate to my posts whether it is the poems I write, or about recipes they’ve tried from the blog, or book recommendations – these are immensely satisfying. And most of these readers aren’t even bloggers. So, that’s something that I am really happy and even proud of.
Q3. Your top 2 regular practices that have helped you in blogging.
Ms. Shalini: Planning and Making your presence known on Social Media— I am a list-maker and I live by lists. When it comes to blogging, I trust my planner to do the job. I plan my content for a month and it feels good ticking something off it. I enjoy social media, especially Instagram. In this age when there is a debate about whether Instagrammers are also considered to be bloggers, (Of course, I believe that bloggers are those who have a BLOG! ) I’d say, find a balance between the two. I’m more active on the account @muffytales where I share my Golden Retriever Mufasa’s quirkiness and also the many books that (he) reads! I’m glad to be selected as a representative of one of the best Book Subscription Boxes of India – The Big Book Box and also chosen by mighty publication houses like Bloomsbury, Hachette India and PanMacmillan for reviewing their new and upcoming books.
Q4. Your motivational factor for your best blog.
Ms. Shalini: I had recently shared a post on the Ketogenic diet and also a few recipes for the same. I have also started a daily log on my Instagram account @somethingis_cooking and Facebook page @somethincooking where I share what I eat in a day. It was amazing to find a strong community who believes in this diet and the motivation and guidance I receive every day in the form of comments and DMs make me want to keep going and also contribute more. The same applies to the regional food I share- be it the Pahadi Aloo or Kerala Kappa and Fish Curry, there are always so many positive comments that make me believe in traditional regional food.
Q5. One relationship who contributed to making your blog.
Ms. Shalini: That’s a hard one because my parents are the first ones to read any of my blog posts. But I began blogging to record the recipes that I tried in my kitchen as a newly-wed. So, I don’t think I would have started a blog if not because of my husband. That said, I have put my heart and soul into my blogs. Therefore, all its successes and failures are all me.
Q6. One factor, out of your comfort zone in blogging.
Ms. Shalini: I have started doing short recipe videos but I am still not comfortable with doing a full-length video with voice-over. Well, blame it on my squeaky six-year-old voice!
Q7. A book / movie / person / blog that transformed you.
Ms. Shalini: I’d say, Corinne Rodrigues from Everyday Gyaan. She lent me a helping hand and a shoulder to cry on when I was going through a bad time and gave me all the necessary guidance and help I needed with blogging. It feels surreal because I haven’t even met her until now. I understood the true essence of community – sharing and giving, through her Writing community – Write Tribe.
Q8. Your strength and weakness as a blogger.
Ms. Shalini: I am never satisfied when it comes to blogging. I always want to up my game. That keeps me on my toes. Be it learning photography, researching day and night on how to do recipe videos, to how to edit them for youtube, I think I have it in me to go the extra mile to achieve something. That’s both my strength and my weakness. I can easily be consumed in one thing when I set my mind on it.
Q9. One principle you are proud of.
Ms. Shalini: That I won’t work for peanuts! I value the effort that I have put into learning the skills that I have now. And I am not ready to undermine them.
Q10. Blogging tips to share with your readers.
Ms. Shalini: Never compare and know your strengths!
Best Blog – Ah, too many to list!
Best Blogger Friend – It’s difficult to choose one for I have made many genuine friends in the blogging world. But Kala Ravi from Relax n Rave and Ramya Abhinand from Me Otherwise are my 3 am friends. I can go to them with anything.
Best Dream – That which I dream with my eyes wide open!
Best Food – Mom’s Sambar and Dad’s Chicken Curry
Best Book – Too many! But I love Gone with the Wind and Harry Potter! I have re-read the HP series at least seven times!
Best TV Series –Game of Thrones (barring the last season!)
Best Life Motto – “It is never too late to be what you might have been” -George Eliot
Thank you very much, Vasantha for this opportunity.
Thanks again Ms. Shalini for this honest and insightful interview sprinkled with a full dose of motivation and inspiration. You never failed to make me awe and this interview is the perfect highlight. We feel proud to have you as our Featured Cool Blogger.
Dear readers, please leave your queries, if any, in the comment section and we will try to get them answered by her.
Meet you at the next chill chat with another cool blogger !!!
Featured & Pinnable Image Courtesy: Canva