Who am I? Why am I here?

Thank you Scotland

Important things in my life: family, blogging, tea, Tunnocks

This year I have been privileged enough to have been asked to speak at Mumsnet’s Blogfest 2015. If you are going too then please let me know and come and say hi. If you can’t make it then do check in to the Mumsnet website over the next few weeks – they are going to be sharing some guest posts from lots of the great speakers that are going….and from me!

Mumsnet asked me to write the guest post the same week as WordPress told me I had been blogging for 2 years – a pretty nice way to celebrate I thought. You can find my guest post here. Pop over and let me know what you think!

I’ll be speaking on a panel entitled “Giving it away: The public stories of our private lives.” Here is the blurb from the Blogfest programme:

As writers, we inevitably draw on our own lives for material, and honesty and vulnerability are attractive qualities to a reader – but how do we balance this with our own privacy and that of family and friends? Is it okay to ‘out’ our partner or children’s domestic foibles, and when does this cross the line into invasion of privacy? This session will incorporate practical tips from writers who regularly expose their private lives to scrutiny, and ask whether we can ever be reliable narrators of our own story – are we destined to self-aggrandise, self-efface, or self-censor? And if we’ve constantly got one eye on crafting a good story, does that mean we’re living less authentic lives?

Speakers include: Fi Glover (Chair), Shappi Khorsandi, Abby Boid, Lucy Cavendish, Robert Crampton.

Exciting!

Now, back to this blog – you can head over to the ‘About Cogito Ergo Mum’ page to discover what this little corner of the internet is all about. If you want to know a little more about me personally, read on.

  1. My name is Abby. If I had been born a  boy I would have been called Sam. I was named after a character in a TV drama about survivors of a nuclear holocaust. Make of that what you will.
  2. I’m a white woman who is in her late 30s and of no particular religion. This blog is not about my ethnicity, woman-ness, aged-ness, or agnosticism. I kind of hope that if you are not all (or any) of these things, that you can still engage with what I write.  I have no idea how these parts of me influence my writing, but of course they must do.
  3. I  am married and have three young children. Thinking about our three small boys and how I can help them prepare for their adult life is pretty central to some of my blog posts. This is not a blog plotting their progress through childhood, and as such I have chosen not to include photos of them in my posts. This makes adding images to the blog tricky given most of my photos are of my children.
  4. I was born into a happily working class family in South Yorkshire. I am now a happily middle class person living in the South of England. I owe a lot to a family who put  financial pressure on themselves to ensure I got an education, and who did not complain when I swapped from the psychology degree to the philosophy one. The philosophy degree influences this blog a lot.
  5.  I have good friends whose politics range from the pretty far left to the true blue Conservatives. My political pendulum tends to rest at left of centre.

People seem to want to categorise blogs. I’ve seen them labelled as  ‘humorous’, ‘controversial’, ‘or ‘informative’ for example. I hope mine is thought-provoking, reflective, and that it tackles some serious issues without taking itself too seriously.

I am trying to get a Facebook page thing going on, but it’s lonely there at the moment. If you like Facebook too then please do like my page. Otherwise, pop over here now and again and say hi.

Abby

x

54 thoughts on “Who am I? Why am I here?

    • Abby says:

      Thank you! The name thing – aaargghh – so frustrating! I started off writing under another name when I didn’t know what I was going to be writing about. Once i realised it is not the sort of blog that requires secret names, I tried to change it on all of my accounts. It hasn’t filtered through to all sections of some accounts and I am still trying to work out why! Any hints, let me know. Hope you are well and had a great Christmas.

      Like

      • Le Coin de Mel says:

        That made you sound mysterious actually! When you click on it and land on Google +, it does say Abby. Must be something you can change on your WordPress account (not that I have a clue, I am a complete newbie – too scared my blog is not good enough to actually show it to anyone, haha!)

        Like

      • Abby says:

        Why don’t you looks at the WordPress challenge I am doing? It’s called zero to hero. For total newbies as well as others. Let me know what you think? PS I am definitely not mysterious!

        Like

      • Le Coin de Mel says:

        It sounds great, I have been contemplating signing up for it since reading your post about an hour ago… it would have been a fab holiday project, but with work starting back on Monday, I doubt I will manage. You know what? I will sign up for the newsletters anyway! Thanks.

        Like

    • Abby says:

      Thank you. I am always changing that tag line at the top. Maybe we will get there, maybe it will always be a moving target. So long as we are having fun, eh?!

      Like

  1. globalmouse says:

    I think that’s a great way to think of your blog, as a person, and why not someone like yourself? Sometimes it can be hard to see the people behind the blogs so it’s a great post!

    Like

    • Abby says:

      Thank you. I didn’t realise when I started out how important it is to get a feel of the person who is writing. But it does feel a bit odd disclosing lots of information about yourself to strangers! I don’t feel uncomfortable with what I posted though, and your comment gives assurance that it wasn’t too self obsessed!

      Like

  2. Jenni Clutten says:

    I hadn’t seen the Zero to Hero challenge but it looks great. I think I’m a bit late now but I’m certainly going to keep it bookmarked. I’m looking forward to seeing how you get on and it’s great to read a bit more about you.

    Like

    • Abby says:

      Hi jenni. It only started yesterday. I did today’s and yesterday’s challenge in a few hours over the last day. The challenge is not time critical – they say you can dip into the tasks as and when you choose. So give it a go!

      Like

  3. Mammasaurus says:

    Happy New Year! I like to think of my blog as an extension of me which is ether wise or completely deluded!
    The challenge sounds interesting and a good way to step back and assess things x

    Like

    • Abby says:

      Oooh. You are definitely far nearer the wiser end than the deluded one. The challenge is great – initiatives like this one and the sort of support that you and your blogs give are so helpful, so thank you

      Like

  4. Russ says:

    I would have said the part about “three things (you) want to learn” the same way you did (the bit about being “a little dry”), but in reality bloggers like me are interested in learning, and we very, very often learn from one another. So have no fear: I, at least, lost no interest at that point. 🙂

    Great “getting to know you” post – thanks! I’m looking forward to your future posts, of course!

    Like

    • Russ says:

      Bah… just realized the first part of my comment could be taken the wrong way. I meant it to mean that I would be self-effacing too. My confidence in my ability to write something interesting is suspect at best, and so I was relating to your own supposition about how readers would receive that part of your post. I hope you understood it the way I intended – if not, I apologize! 🙂

      Like

    • Abby says:

      Thank you Emily. And a happy new year to your too. Ps I think I saw you speaking at blogfest? If that was you – thanks – I found that session really useful.

      Like

  5. Dennis Cardiff says:

    Hi Abby, I appreciate your philosophy. I can also identify with your statement “Now when I go out, I don’t care where I am, so long as the friends are genuine, and I have a seat (preferably not one in a bus shelter).” That seems to cover it for me as well. I like your writing. If we lived a few thousand miles closer, I’d enjoy drinking an ale with you. ~ Dennis

    Like

  6. Karuna says:

    I enjoyed reading several of your posts and look forward to reading more in the future. I learned this morning that there will be a Writing 201 course starting soon so maybe we will meet again there.

    Because of the interests you expressed, I thought I’d let you know my son writes a blog http://theseekersdungeon.com/ that combines philosophy, spirituality, poems and other things. Like you, he found it a way to put his philosophy degree to use!

    Like

  7. shilyot says:

    The persona you present to the world is one card in a pack of 52 and 2 jokers..you are the pack of cards! The persona you choose to present depends on which is today’s winning (or losing ) card. That’s why I write in poetry.. it’s a cipher. Not sure I’m ready to show the whole deck to the world! Good luck and enjoy. Public speaking is amazing!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. maddy@writingbubble says:

    What a panel you were part of! That and the think bombs were my favourite sessions of the day. I wish I’d read this before blogfest as I would have come and said hi – I also have three sons, was born in Yorkshire (albeit, North) and changed from a psychology degree to a philosophy one. Hope we get to meet sometime! (P’s have just liked you fb page) xx

    Like

    • Abby Boid says:

      North Yorkshire – very beautiful. How can one county have so many different aspects? Weird weird weird about the degree thing. Where did you study? Utter privilege Been on that panel. They were all just so lovely. Might try britmums live next year and will def def def be at blogfest16 – will meet up! Thanks for the Facebook like. I’ll find you over there too x

      Like

  9. Le Coin de Mel says:

    Oh wow, I didn’t realise you were one of the speakers this year. That’s amazing news, and what an achievement, only 2 years after you started blogging. I still remember our first chat at BlogFest a couple of years ago. You’d been blogging for 6 weeks or so, and I hadn’t even published my first post. Time flies, doesn’t it?

    Like

    • Abby Boid says:

      Fly? Doesn’t it just! I am so so happy every time I look at your blog. It’s just perfect, and it always reminds me of out Blogfest chat. I still haven’t worked up the bottle to go pro. Not sure it would suit this sort of blog. Trying to get something else going and just starting to realise how much work is involved – you have my eternal respect at how much you’ve achieved in a way that’s true to you and your gorgeous family. hope to see you again soon.

      Like

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