A Quick Thanks!

Thank You
Hello readers! Last week, I had two nominations for the lovely Liebster Award again! I would like to thank +A Long for nominating me on Blogger and +Dyane Forde for nominating me on WordPress! Thank you both so much. Dyane, I appreciate that coming from you because I never really thought you knew what I am writing about on my blog! Thank you! 
I will be relocated to a new place that’s nearer to my working place soon. So, there won’t be any new posts until I get a proper internet connection. I know I will somehow get it soon because you can’t separate me from the internet connection. LOL. You will see me back in action soon. 
I would also like to take this opportunity to thank +ambarish kumar who has listed my blog under ”my suggestion” section on his blog! Kumar is an ardent blogger who writes on everything you need to know about the internet and the effective ways to drive traffic to your website and earn money online! If you think your blog isn’t doing well, it is time to read FREE tips he has on his blog and implement the suggestions so that you have better targeted traffic and low bounce rate. 
There are two posts on my draft list right now! I will be working on that next but the next post is going to be my 100th post! So, let’s see if that will be a video blog instead :))
Best regards,

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Writing Can Be Deadly!

Writing Can Be Suicidal

I am back as promised! Why writing can be suicidal? Well, if you are a fiction writer and you are writing about something doesn’t exist in reality, that is completely fine because it involves nobody in the real world. But what if you are writing about something that is happening around you? About social issues and politics or even about your own thoughts and views on certain people or politicians? Now could you smell the possible danger arousing due to this?

I have been a member of Global Voice and I am very excited about it because it helps me lend bloggers and social media users a louder voice to highlight what they are saying collectively! Let’s take the issue or news about who has been awarded the Nobel Peace Prize recently. I’m sure many people across the world will be talking about this and voicing their opinion about the result. Some would or may say that Malala should have been awarded instead of the OPCW. What authors of Global Voices do is to summarise what people are saying about a particular issue.

Now, being an author on GV is as risky as being a blogger. While people may support the good deed  of exposing the truth, abolishing crime and terrorism; the ugly truth is nothing guarantees that we will be safe being a whistle blower. I will tell you why people don’t get involved in social work that is ‘risky’ like this or may be sometimes it is a better option to just keep quiet and mind our own business.

Sometime ago, we had a case in Malaysia where someone was shot while he stopped at a traffic light. He is in charge of the My Watch movement which basically works as a whistle blower. R. Sanjeevan was a young man who was inspired to do something beneficial and transform the corrupted society into a better community. My Watch is about ten months old and has successfully revealed a few corrupted authorities. Guess what he got as the prize of it? He was shot after getting several threats by people and luckily survived but still suffering from the aftermath. Sanjeevan shared his story with a reporter lately that the movement is now dying as there is nobody to protect him or to support his fight for Malaysia. In fact, he also told that he has lost many friends after this incident as they were afraid of their own lives.

While I was reading this issue, I came across another updated blog post on one of the most popular blogs in Malaysia. It is written by someone with a blog name of  ”The Raged Indian”. As I was reading this, I learned that he stayed away from blogging for quite sometime as he has received threats from some people as well since he writes a lot about social issues and influences thousands of Malaysian Indians particularly. He raised a very good question in his post too that made me think he was right. After all, if something happens to him, who will be at lost and who will come to defend him? It is still an unanswerable question isn’t it?

Today, I came to know that Malala’s book is out. It has been written by Malala with Christina Lamb as the contributor. She is an advocate for women and she got shot by the Talibans. When you do good in the public, you will be scrutinised heavily and then discriminated!. She was expected by some to win the Nobel Peace Prize but it was awarded to OPCW. I got goosebump while watching one of her interviews today and it made me feel so proud of her! It also explains the power we have as an individual and this is what I like the most. I think Malala’s life has changed to reveal the real potential she acquires.

I feel that one doesn’t need to be an activist in a global level. Anyone who is able to instill changes in another person’s life is an activist. As we live in a dangerous world, it is better to start from below and act like the termites. Termites are small and eats your wood from within silently and you will only know when everything is totally destroyed; when the entire furniture comes crashing down on your head! Any social activist should be working like that so that you don’t alert people in authority who is capable of bringing you down.

Like +BV Bharati said, it can be dangerous exposing the activities of people especially politicians. She has written an article about it earlier which can be viewed via this link. On the other hand, if you have not heard about author Jean Sasson, you can check it out here and see for yourself how she got into trouble by stalkers who file cases against her! She shares her experience with her reader at her website. She writes about life in the Middle East and I love reading her work!

Sharing what Jean says here:
For anyone who is considering writing a book, you might want to read my personal account of what it is like to be stalked, and, for that stalker to find attorneys willing to file a frivolous lawsuit. — Jean

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I Write Because It’s Not A Crime To Kill Someone On Print

A Mission Through Writing
Today, while I was reading something, I sort of interviewed myself as a weird random question popped out of my head. Why do I write? And I instantly had an answer to this question my mind erupted out of curiosity. I write because it is not a crime to kill someone on print. I write mostly about social issues and I just had to pen my thoughts down when something is troubling from within and when my mind forces its thoughts out of my head through words onto my computer screen. It’s almost like a need of mine that I have to satisfy when I find the urge and inspirations to write. I feel that there are a lot of things that are just not right around us and I think that it is not worth of a small discussion between a group of colleagues or within family members. We do the talking and forget about the urgency or seriousness of the issue. There are also moments when I just feel like strangling someone or a group of people from our society to death which I obviously can’t afford to do. So I resort to writing and letting the rage out on my blog. For me, emotions fuel the drive within me to write and when I am in the right frame of mind to write, words come easy and flows well to make a complete article. 
One of the reasons why I feel everyone should write is because words speak louder than us. I feel the messages we have in our writing reaches wider group of readers. Writing is powerful and it spreads my thoughts all around the WORLD. On another hand, it also gives me a pleasure knowing that my messages reach the ‘intended’ people and they can’t do about it much. Every time I get a negative comment suggesting disapproval about something I write, I know that it has affected someone and probably it is them who I am referring to on my post which has prompted them to react such way. It is true that if you have never earned at least one enemy in your whole life time, you have not been doing something right. Last but not least, I also believe that your writing lives longer than you. Shakespeare is still living today because of his majestic writing. 

Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day? (Sonnet 18)
Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day?
Thou art more lovely and more temperate.
Rough winds do shake the darling buds of May,
And summer’s lease hath all too short a date.
Sometime too hot the eye of heaven shines,
And often is his gold complexion dimmed;
And every fair from fair sometime declines,
By chance, or nature’s changing course, untrimmed;
But thy eternal summer shall not fade,
Nor lose possession of that fair thou ow’st,
Nor shall death brag thou wand’rest in his shade,
When in eternal lines to Time thou grow’st.
So long as men can breathe, or eyes can see,
So long lives this, and this gives life to thee. 
William Shakespeare
It gives me goosebumps thinking how true this is and how he preservered his love through writing!!! 
I welcome you thoughts and views ! 😀 Thank you for your feedback

Grow Your Blog Audience: Enable 3rd Party Commenting System

As a blogger for the past three months, I am keen on updating my blog to be appealing to my readers as well as Search Engines. In order to take blogging into the next level, one should do Search Engine Optimisation to his or her blog. Now many bloggers have great contents on their blog and some even get thousands of visitors a month. It is a sad case if you don’t make an effort to learn about blogging further when some people out there are mastering blogging tricks and bringing their blogs on the first page of Google thus being a blogger by profession.
I have always wanted to have my Facebook friends and Twitter followers commenting on my blog. Most of the time, when I have not published any new post, I would still be getting a decent amount of audience on my blog on my popular articles. I know they are not from G+, so they are not able to comment on my blog or like the post. So I enabled Disqus thread on my blogger account. With this, I hope more readers would be engaged on my thoughts via my posts. 
For Disqus to work you should disable G + comment system.  All you should do is to create an account an install the widget via their easy-install method on http://disqus.com/
I hope this work for you and do let me know if you like the changes on my blog. 

Importance of Doing SEO For Blogs

Blogging and SEO
I have been a blogger now for the past four months with almost 10K visits to my site. Regardless of why we blog, we need good traffic to actually promote our writings. Good blogging way would drive quality traffic to your blog. So how do we do this? I have learnt some important tips that are worth following all these while and I think SEO plays an important role in ensuring you get good number of visitors. It is a well-known short form for Search Engine Optimisation. I bet most of you would be using Google as your primary search engine. In order to have your page appearing in lower Page Rank List (PRL), you need to tweak your blog and articles to some extent. 
1. Keyword Density
Ideally, you should have one keyword that is included in your article title, and appear two to three times only throughout your blog. I chose the keyword which is the abbreviation of Search Engine Optimisation as it appears to be having medium level of search results per month. You can check the priority level of keywords using Google Adwords. When you limit your keyword usage, the search engines crawls better to look up for your articles or blog. 
Google Adwords
2. Page Layout
I just checked for my SEO site checkup results via this page and it says that my page loads slowly as it exceeds the average size of a webpage. An average webpage’s size is only 33 kb whereas mine is about 200 kb which is pretty high and one way to cut down the size of your page is by using CSS layouts, external style sheets and moving javascripts to external files. I have no idea yet what those stuffs mean but I will surely look into it. Apparently, sites with larger sizes discourages people to visit which is pretty true.
3. Blog Article Details 
Make sure your blog article is updated with search descriptions and labels. Ensure you have enabled custom robots tags too. If you have pictures, make sure you add titles to it and always cite the page that you have taken the pictures from. I have learned that words in italic and bold help search engines to locate your articles better but there are other sources saying this is not necessarily true or effective. As you can see, I have highlighted my keyword here in bold to emphasis on SEO

4. Google Analytics
If you have signed up for Google Analytics, you will find interesting stuffs regarding search engine results related to your blog. This is the result for my blog. Check the keywords people use to land on my page. It is pretty interesting. 
Google Analytics
I’ll be updating this page with more information from time to time. Stay tuned. 

Save Your Reading Lists, Import Your Google Reader !

Do you know the Google Reader is closing down very soon? What impact does it have on you? If you are using Blogger and you have saved your favourite blog lists or followed blogs you love reading on Blogger via Friend Connect, you will not be able to get those updates on your blog home page anymore. That is from 15th July, about ten days from now.
I have just saved imported all my reading lists from Blogger to two other RSS readers, The Old Reader and the widely used top Google Reader alternative, Feedly
I will show you how to import your lists within ten minutes and never worry about losing your reading lists anymore. 

1. Download Data From Google Reader

Click on the Google Takeout
When you have arrived to the homepage, you will see a clickable link on Google Takeout. This will allow you to download all data on your blog and save it into your computer. 
Once you click on the link, it will bring you to this page where you can choose what to save on your computer. The reader is already on the list to download from the picture on the left, to add another service, click on the ‘add another service’ below and click on the ‘create archive’ red link. 
As you can see, I have downloaded my blog posts and reader lists. You can select as many services you want to download. Once you have chosen your download lists, click on ‘download’ and instantly your file will be downloaded. Mine was downloaded via Winzip file.

2. Importing Data

When you open the downloaded file, you will see different folders in it containing respective services’ documents. Open Reader’s folder and you will see an XML document right at the end of the list. You may want to copy paste this document into your desktop to ease the uploading process next. 
All you have to do now is to go to Feedly Reader’s webpage and signup. I signed up using Google + and it’s so easy. You will see an option to import your own reading lists and all you have to do is to choose the XML document and import. You can see all your lists appearing very soon. 
Mine looks like this from the new RSS feed. Good luck in trying and don’t be late. You have ten days from now. 

Thanking YOU, Yes, You All My Awesome 40 Followers!

If you are reading this, chances are you found this post on  Blogger’s blog post updates on your dashboard, from your WordPress or from Google + updates, which all indicate that you are following me hence you see the updates of my blogging world. 

Thank You So Much
Image grabbed here
I had the idea of making this post on my mind which I thought could be done a few days later when my exam is over. But as soon as I logged into my Blogger today and saw that I have a few more awesome people following my blog, I decided to pen my thoughts right away. This post is dedicated to all of you who have shown interest in my writing and encouraged me to write endlessly. Not forgetting my author and writer friends on Google + as well. Thank you so much from the bottom of my heart.
I would like to express my gratitude for Adrianna Joleigh’s endless motivation, who saw a writer in me and encouraged me to write, turning me to a writer from merely a blogger. I would also love to take this opportunity remembering the super-awesome Vashti Q Vega who has been a sweet lady encouraging my writing in all social media platform. I remember her adding me on Twitter, my FB fan page and everywhere else and she is just so adorable. Alana Munro for the supportive nature towards all writers in general through Support-a-Writer Page on Google + community. Glen Perkins for his wonderful support from the early days I started writing blog posts. 
For all of you who have been reading my posts or who have just joined my page, I would love to bring you to the point where the writing track begun. I have been writing for the past three months now without fail. I remember starting this blog of mine when I needed to break-free from life’s devastation. I knew I already had a blogspot account where I was writing on a different blog earlier. I barely had ten posts over there and my inspiration waned off so quickly that I stopped writing. 
Making use of the platform that has always been there, I started to exploit Google + and all other social media to get myself connected to all possible writers. The support was instantaneous and overwhelming. I write to make an impact. My writings are quite blunt at times and thought-provoking. I would love to make a change if not to the world, at least to my readers and society. My posts are mainly on controversial issues and social stuffs that are worth highlighting and bringing to YOUR attention. Writing for a good cause I would say in a nutshell. 
I have received some critiques, both positive and negative which are very useful in building my writing journey. I am working on a non-fiction research which will be made into a book. It features the lives of women all around the globe, unfolding the ugly truths and revealing different faces of gender discrimination. The research would be made into blog posts too in order to get feedbacks from all of you my valuable readers. Thank you so much! 

Featured Interview: Adrianna Joleigh

Hello readers! If you are on my page reading this or perhaps you are one of the 35 lovely people out there following my blog right now, I would want to let you know something about my writing journey and how it has actually grown and developed into what it is right now. If you think my writing is making an impact and you are impressed with it, you should also ought to know the people behind the person I am now. 
Writing requires perseverance! Writing in a language that isn’t your first language can be painful at times and reaching out readers from English speaking world is another big challenge. Without the support of lovely writers I met through Google + I would have given up writing by now. One such lovely soul is +Adrianna Joleigh !!! And she is also the reason why I decide to write a book! She is the ultimate support behind the project I have started featuring lives on women in different parts of the world, a non-fiction collection! She is an incredibly talented writer who will leave you amazed with her poems greatly intertwined with emotions! 
Adrianna, I’m happy to have found you in Google + and I’m really so proud of the achievements we all made so far! This exclusive interview is for you! Cheers!!

Where are you from? I am from a breathtaking city called Århus, in Denmark.

Why do you write? I write to release any built up frustration I have. It’s my punching bag. If I feel an overwhelming emotion then I use it to create.

What do you write about? I write about fears, my reality, and battles that we often face but are too embarrassed to admit them.

Do you have a specific writing style? I’ve been told that I have a unique writing style, but I have no earthly (or universal) clue what they are referring to. I write the story as I see it in my head. I have a vivid imagination so maybe that helps a bit but I’m not sure what sort of ‘style’ I have. Maybe someone can elaborate on what they refer to when they say that. I’d like to know so I can answer these questions proficiently lol.

What are obstacles that come in the way of writing? I’m a full-time mother to twins. They are my life entirely and such a joy to be around. I do crave to write often, every second of the day, but the twins need me much more than my stories. Finding the time to write has its obstacles but no doubt, they are wonderful obstacles.

What’s the most memorable thing asked/said by a reader about your work? The first time I turned my Oh-so-raw rough draft in to my editor he mentioned that I had a lot to learn, but I had raw talent. And another said that I had the ability to grab the emotions in a reader and manipulate it, causing them to feel what I felt when I wrote it. I’m not sure if they were just being nice or serious haha but I’ll never forget what they said.

How long have you been writing? I’ve been writing non-stop since September of 2012. I’ve written off and on in the past but never had the knowledge or interest to finish them.

When did you first realize you wanted to become a writer? I’d have to say it was this past September. I remember going through some tough times with my emotions and I went to my computer in desperation. I had to write down what I was feeling so that I could breathe. Well, one paragraph led to a page and a page into many pages and before I knew it I had a lot to say. Of course, this was a diary of mine. I reread through it and saw 1 paragraph that stuck in my mind. It was about when I was a child and the sound of footsteps walking to my room at night, and how afraid I was because I never could tell what was going to happen next. Once I read that paragraph I had an epiphany, I should write a book. If I’m going to write in my diary why not write a book? And thus came Nadia. Don’t get me wrong. Nadia isn’t about me, but if you were to dig deep into the symbolisms and really see the big picture behind it all, you’d see it also contains a diary of some sorts. The craving to write hit me then and I never and still do not rest until I write down everything I imagine.

What would you say is your interesting writing quirk? I would say my quirk would be howI write. I write fast and to the point the first go round, the skeleton so-to-speak. Then after I’m done with that I go back and add the muscles to the story, and once I’m finished with that I add the meat. Finally I finish it with touchups and rewording to make it flow better. It sounds like a long process, and would be to someone trying it for the first time, but it’s how my brain works and I can’t function in any other manner.

How long does it take to write a book? (if you’ve written one -published or non) I’ve not finished Nadia yet. However I can guess that it will probably take me a year to write it and get it ready for an agent to view. I would finish already if I had all day and night to write, but I share my time with my babies and they come first, of course. I can easily write a chapter in an hour if I was allowed a solid hour. That would be nice.

Do you have suggestions on how to become a better writer? I’m not sure I’m a person to ask about this. I’m in no way a great writer. I can tell you the advice from other writers and that is to read. Read a lot. I have my debates on that idea actually but I do, in all, agree with them.

What challenges do you come across when writing/creating your story? Sometimes my character argues with me. I want to go into the next room in the story and she tells me no. Unruly characters are ruthless sometimes.

What do you think makes a good story?
A convincing, relatable antagonist. A villain that is unique but with qualities that are real enough that I can relate them with a villain I have in my own life. It makes it a bit more personal that way and takes me along with the writer’s imagination.  A good conflict too.
Unpredictability. I don’t like knowing what is going to happen before it happens. I’d rather be blown away at the end. Too many clues along the way ruin the story. Like the story ‘’Book of Eli.’’ Through the entire story it took you on an emotional, thrilling, violent, and horrific ride about this man’s journey to protect something priceless, and then at the end BAM! It all falls together and what you thought was, really wasn’t. And after the puzzle pieces all came together I was in awe. I wanted to see it again. That’s what a great book, in my opinion, is about. Unexpected events and outcomes. A journey through a parallel tale that captivates us entirely to the point that we don’t know that we are reading words. But instead, we are living the life the author has laid before us. Nothing quite like it, I must say. The greatests stories ever written have to be read repeatedly to grasp the full effect of what the author is really trying to convey.

What does your family think of your writing? Some don’t know that I’m writing. I’ve shared writing with them before and I was laughed at. Not the pointing and laughing but I felt I wasn’t taken seriously and all they could do was pick at the names of my characters and the storyline, saying how it sounded silly. So, I never mentioned it to them again. My mother is now proud of me. At first she thought it was rather unimportant but now that I write for an online magazine and am published she is seeing that this is something I dream of doing.

When did you first consider yourself a writer? The moment I realized that it’s everything that I am. It’s all I think about. I thrive off of the next idea. I live in my own fantasies. I’ve always been a writer, I just never knew it, until once I began writing a few months ago it began to consume me.  You are what you dream to accomplish, and therefore I’m a writer.

Do you see writing as a career? I definitely do. I’ve had publicists contact me in the past week alone wanting to know more about Nadia and when I’ll be finished with the book. I definitely see potential of making it far. I just need to focus and see it through. Keep the momentum going and not back down.

Do you have anything specific you’d like to tell the readers? If you want to become a writer/editor/publicist, etc, by all means dream it. Dream it through your veins. Let it fill your lungs and invades your mind entirely. Those dreams are yours. No one else’s. Be proud of what you accomplish and never degrade your efforts by allowing others to bring you down. To write is a lifetime of opportunity. To create is only a talent you can possess. And the ability to conquer lies within your hands and imagination.

She can be reached at her page http://adriannajoleigh.com/ . 
Support her incredible poems and blog novel! 

How To Network With Your Blog

 I have gone frenzy with blogs and blogging networks that I have just joined more than five blogging network online available. I could hardly remember what and where I have signed up for but today I really found some interesting stuffs to find bloggers of similar interest with you, where you can grow your blog and advertise it too. I’ll have a hard time recalling the web pages and perhaps I should jot it down as a self-reminder! I’ll be back to discuss about it.

Back! I have a few pages that I found could help promoting oneself as a writer and to share more with fellow bloggers and writer.

1. Glipho
Glipho is an exciting page that extracts your articles on blogspot and wordpress to be displayed on your glipho homepage. One of the advantages here is that it links your article to many other networks and you can easily have your page on pinterest and twitter. So this is like all in all page. On top of that, you article is open to discussion and feedback so that’s an added reward for joining glipho. Here is the link to my glipho

2. Networkedblogs
One of the remarkable criteria of networkblog is that it links your article directly to your own blogger or wordpress page. This means your page will get more traffic as your readers grow. This page also allows auto-publishing to your various other social networks. It saves your time publishing your work on different pages. Here is how NetworkBlog page looks like.

3. Blogher
Blogher is a platform to showcase your work on issues related to women. It’s a large social and blogging network for women in general which will give you an opportunity to be recognised as a writer. This page brings news all over the world pertaining social issues on women, therefore it expands your social circle. Here is how blogher page looks like.

4. About Me
About.Me is an awesome page that tells things about you. You can attach short bio of yourself, view and review your friend’s page, add a link of this page to your e-mail, and most importantly this page allows you to link all your social media accounts on your profile. It auto-updates your blogs and you can view the page analytic!!! This tells you exactly how many people interacts with your application and social media pages. To promote yourself, get a good bio on this page! It makes wonders! This is My page!

5. Disqus
Disqus enables you to add features that aids in flexible commenting system. Imagine someone lands on your page from Facebook, they don’t have G+ account, it will make things difficult for them and discourage people to make comments. This is especially for G+ users who have enabled the G+ comments on their blogs. There won’t be any ways for people beside G+ users to comment on your post. Enable this great feature and import all your old comments into Disqus.

This post will be updated as I discover more useful pages related to blogging world! Stay tuned!