RealDelia Has A New Home!

February 14, 2011

And a new look!

I’ve moved…I’m still Real Delia , but I have a whole new look and feel.

Please come over and join the party at realdelia.com.

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On Vacation

October 25, 2010

Hi All.

I’ll be away on vacation in Berlin this week but look forward to catching up with you next week.

Auf Wiedersehen…Ich bin ein Berliner…and all that good stuff.

Have a great week!

 

Image: German Flag by Craig Is Shooting via Flickr under a Creative Commons license


RealDelia Reader Survey

October 18, 2010

Hi folks.

I’m taking a break from my normal posting today to ask a big favor.

I’m in the process of re-designing this blog (stay tuned!) and as I go about doing that, I thought that it might be helpful to know a bit more about my readers.

Should I ever try to syndicate all or parts of this blog (for profit), I need to know a bit more about the demographics of my readers. And should I ever wish to run ads, I will also need to know a bit more about you.

So I’ve designed a survey to learn a few details about who’s reading this blog. A few points worth making up front:

*I’m running this survey through an on line company called Survey Monkey.

*This is completely anonymous survey and all data will be handled confidentially. No one will know who you are (even me!)

*This won’t take more than a few minutes of your time. (Promise!)

But it will be enormously helpful to me as I move forward with RealDelia.

I wish that I could give you a prize for doing this, but I will instead just thank you from the bottom of my heart. As a token of my appreciation, I will also bequeath you the virtual flower bouquet featured above for being such loyal and devoted readers of this blog.

Apparently the survey link was not working when I first posted but it should be working now. If you tried to do the survey and could not, kindly try again.

Please take a moment and Click here to take survey

Thanks!!!!

Image: Thank You For 44,000 Views This Year by Poppy Wright via Flickr under a Creative Commons license.

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Cherry On Top Award

September 20, 2010

Erin over at Cross’ The Pond sent me the Cherry on Top Award – for which I am truly grateful and deeply flattered.

There are rules, of course. I must pass it along to six other bloggers and they too must follow the rules. Here they are:

Answer this question:
If you had the chance to go back and change one thing in your life, would you, and what would it be?
Thank the person who gave you this award.

PICK 6 people/blogs and give them this award. You then have to inform the person that they have received this award.

There are many things I’d change, of course. But the one major thing I’d do differently would be to counsel my younger self not to think that I needed to have it all figured out by the time I was 25. When I was young, I put so much pressure on myself to know what I “wanted” out of life – especially professionally. I didn’t feel like there was time to wander or to test things out. I thought that I needed to know and so I made decisions – important ones – because I felt like the most important thing was to decide. That proved to be so wrong and while we all learn from our mistakes, I now see that if I’d just loosened up and let myself breathe a bit more, I could have gotten to a happy place professionally much sooner. Of course, then perhaps I wouldn’t have this blog – which is all about that journey – or maybe I’d have it but it would be called something like “Finding yourself in adulthood…at 25!” Ha!
So thank you for nominating me, Erin.
And here are my six folks:

LPC at Privilege: A High Wasp Stops To Consider

Katy at The Book Snob

Ms. Bougie at Another Bourgeois Dilemma

Jen at Jenography

Susanna at A Modern Mother

Patricia at Patricia’s Wisdom

Please stop by and visit these folks’ blogs. They are all fab!

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Let’s Be Friends: Join Me On Facebook

August 17, 2010

OK, so at long last I’m going to go ahead and open up my Facebook account to…(drumroll please)…you!

I’ve held off doing this for a long time. When I first joined Facebook a little over a year ago (yes, I know, I was a late adopter…), I wasn’t quite sure how it would fit into my life and wanted to keep it just for close “real life” friends and family.

Well, as any of you fellow Facebook-o-philes realize, that model quickly went right out the window. Although I wouldn’t “accept” anyone as a friend that I’d never met personally, the range of people who made it under the radar because we’d once met was still quite high. One year later and with 325 friends (and growing), it now seems silly to call all of those people close friends.

In addition, I blog regularly at places like Politics Daily and The Huffington Post and Yahoo! Shine where it’s pretty much du rigueur to invite readers to not only follow you on twitter (which I’ve always done), but to friend you on Facebook. It’s all part of the new journalism, dontcha know, and I need to get with that program.

Until recently, another barrier to going global with my Facebook account was that I decided – erroneously, I now believe – to use my given name, Delia Boylan, for Facebook and my professional name, Delia Lloyd, for everything else. But that just proved confusing. I’ve recently solved that problem by changing my Facebook name to Delia Boylan Lloyd so that there’s something for everyone (including my own multiple personalities…).

But probably the most important reason that I’ve changed my Facebook policy is that there’s absolutely nothing I post there that I wouldn’t be 100% comfortable with other people seeing. Which doesn’t mean that my status updates anodyne or dull. It’s simply that I gradually realized that there’s no rational reason that people who don’t know me – but might want to Know me (in a non-biblical sense, heh-heh) – shouldn’t.

Plus, I’m an inherently extroverted person and I enjoy reading status updates from people I don’t know as much as from those I do. They’re witty, informative and (among other things) often give me writing ideas. And since we now know that social networking isn’t destroying the whole fabric of friendship, just evolving what the concept means, I say, bring it on.

Since I’m opening up my virtual floodgates, let me briefly explain how I use these two wonders of social media. Facebook I use mostly in a very personal sense, by which I mean that I post short, often humorous snippets about my day to day life – e.g. something funny my kids said, a great book I’m reading, a film I’ve seen. It’s a sort of “behind the scenes” RealDelia.

Twitter, in contrast, I tend use in a more professional sense. I share neat articles, interviews and videos I come across, or other cool stuff on the web. It’s very much a sort of daily version of my Friday Pix series, except that I update it throughout the day.

So join me,  friends, on Facebook. Here’s a link to my profile, which is also on the “About page” of this blog. (Note: I will ask you how you got to me, just to weed out the crazies.)  And if you’d like to follow me, I’ve included a handy-dandy blue bird in my side bar that will take you directly to my twitter feed.

Finally, if you’re one of those people who doesn’t know what any of this is and couldn’t be bothered to find out, I say: do so in good health.

Image: Facebook by Laughing Squid via Flickr under a Creative Commons License.

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Parenting: Discovering How Your Kids See You

April 20, 2010

As someone who writes personal essays and blogs, I frequently use my family for material. I’ve written about my husband’s obsession with gadgetry, my son’s first exposure to sex ed and my daughter’s penchant for cross-dressing.

So I guess it was inevitable that sooner or later, the tables would be turned and I’d be the subject of something they wrote. Needless to say, this experience caught me off guard.

At the school my children attend in London, the head teacher solicits “half-term” projects from kids who want to do extra work. The kids write a report, she reads it and they get a certificate at assembly. It’s all good.

Each of my kids has jumped onboard enthusiastically with these assignments. My 8-year-old son has covered topics ranging from Tamerlane (his favorite Khan, as in Ghengis) … Team U.S.A. at the 2008 Olympics … and some of the more obscure “Star Wars” characters. (Plo Koon, anyone?)

My 5-year-old daughter’s reports have been a bit simpler: a reworking of the Cinderella narrative or a series of drawings with self-explanatory captions like “Pirate Louis Is a Pirate.”

Until now. A few days ago, my daughter declared that she’d like to do her half-term project on — wait for it — me. She asked me to download a few photographs from Picasa and then began to work in earnest.

Read the rest of this story at the New York Times Motherlode blog

Image: Writing Lesson by radioflyer007 via flickr under a Creative Commons License.


Tips For Adulthood: Five Reasons I Love To Blog

February 3, 2010

Every Wednesday I offer tips for adulthood.

As some of you know, last Friday was the first anniversary of RealDelia. And while I fully intended to break out the champagne…the confetti…the whole nine yards, somehow I didn’t quite pull it off. (I had hoped that my wife would throw me a party, but she was too busy that day).

So I thought that I would mark the occasion today instead, by telling you five reasons why I love to blog, and why you might like it too:

1. It helps you to find your voice. I have been writing for a long time now in my adult life. I started as a research assistant when I first got out of college. Then there was that long, hazy academic morass when I was a graduate student and then a professor. Over the past three years, it’s been a blend of personal essays, reported features and occasional fiction writing. But it was only once I started this blog that I felt that I finally found my voice as a writer, and realized that – with all my career shifts – that was what I’d been looking for all along.

2. It makes you more mindful as a person. Mindfulness is one of those new-agey terms that I deliberately avoided for awhile. But in fact, one of the great virtues of blogging – at least if you are blogging about your own life and trying to extract lessons from it – is that it makes you more aware of how you lead your life, in ways both large and small. In my own case, one of the major innovations in my personal life was my decision to stop working on Saturdays. And while I can’t attribute that decision entirely to blogging, I think that being in the habit of examining my life on a daily basis (on the blog) gave me the tools to step back and change my life.

3. You make new friends. There’s my e-BFF Sharon, of course – of Neverbloomers fame – whom I first got to know through this blog because of our shared interest in adulthood. Now we’re on Facebook, we Skype one another and I think a professional collaboration may come down the pike. But there are a whole host of people I can think of right off the top of my hat – Colleen, Mike, Kristen, Katy, LPC – to name a few, whom I never would have “met” except through blogging (OK, I did in fact meet Katy once but blogging is our bond.) And I’m so enriched because of those connections.

4. You become more disciplined. Yeah, yeah. It’s trite, I know. But it’s true what they say. When you start writing on a regular basis, it makes you a better writer. Partly because practice makes perfect. But also because you’re able to just sit down and pound it out when you really need to. Which – in my case – has come in really handy over the past nine months that I’ve also been writing for PoliticsDaily.com.

5. You learn a ton. When I started doing this, I thought it would be fun to share my small musings about the world with other like-minded folk. And it has been loads of fun. But it turns out that the best part about blogging is what you learn from other people, either because of a comment they leave on your post, or because you subscribe to their blog, or because you encounter them haphazardly while doing some research on – say – adulthood – and then you end up staying to see what else they’ve got up their sleeve.

In that vein – and to steal a page from Nicola (another great blogger I’ve gotten to e-know), I’d love it if, in the comments section, you’d leave a link to a blog that you really like and which you think I (and readers of RealDelia) should check out. Feel free to leave your own blog’s name. I’d love to come visit.

And most of all, thank you!

Image: Blogging Research Wordle by KristinaB via Flickr under a Creative Commons License.