#GuestDayTuesday – The Gift of Blogging by Sally Cronin

Today, I’m pleased to announce that our guest is none other than blogger extraordinaire, Sally Cronin. I know many of you are familiar with her hugely popular Smorgasbord blog, and will really enjoy this very interesting and entertaining post from her today. So … *clears throat and says “ahem” several times* … Welcome to The Write Stuff, Sally. The floor is all yours! 🙂

~~~

Thanks so much Marcia for this wonderful opportunity to share my thoughts on blogging as I celebrate the 7th anniversary of Smorgasbord Blog Magazine.

Although I started my first blog in 2012 it was very hit and miss until October 2013 when we were back home in Madrid after an absence of a number of years looking after our parents.

There was a great deal to do in the house to repair and renovate before putting the house on the market, and blogging for me was a creative outlet with my books on hold for that year.

Previously I had published a monthly health newsletter for subscribers, which had evolved to include other elements including short stories and humour. I wanted to recreate this in a magazine style blog, and also provide myself with a platform to promote the books I had published so far. I was in search of a title that hinted at food and also variety, and that is when a film I had watched many years before came to mind.

The Prize, from 1963, starring Paul Newman and Elke Sommer, was set in Stockholm for the Nobel Prize awards. On the way from the airport in a taxi Paul Newman asked Elke Sommer if she was married…. Her reply was ‘Why have one when you can have Smorgasbord’… that line popped into my mind and Smorgasbord Blog Magazine was born. Apart from the film reference, I had enjoyed Smorgasbord buffets over the years with their wonderful array of different dishes and I hope that the Swedes will forgive me borrowing the name.

At first my focus was health, views on life in general and humour. After a few months I realised that if I was going to build a productive marketing platform for my own books, I would need to broaden the scope to include other authors and become part of the writing community online. Smorgasbord Café and Bookstore was debuted in June 2016 and has grown from 10 authors to over 150 on average on display, with an estimated 800 books and a recent review within the last six months.

Having the Cafe with regular updates and new book promotions was a good start, but the next step was to build effective social media platforms to boost them. I decided to focus on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn which I was already a member of from my previous career. The cross over between readerships of those platforms then was minimal at that time, so I felt I was reaching a wider audience for the promotions.

Recently I passed my first million views which was cause for celebration, and it also encouraged me to review the direction the blog is heading in the next seven years.

Firstly I must pay tribute to those who have supported me in reaching this milestone. 

I could not have achieved those million views without the support of incredible friends who have made amazing contributions to the content of the blog, and enabled the fulfilment of my dream of a magazine style blog.

Jazz singer, musician and composer William Price King has entertained us with the music of the great musicians of the last 50 years since 2014.

Carol Taylor who lives in Thailand has been sharing her culinary expertise in the Cookery Column for three years.

Non-fiction Canadian author D.G. Kaye has informed and entertained us with the Travel Column and more recently the Relationship Column since 2018.

Author Jessica Norrie shared some wonderful books for two years in the Literary Column

Master baker Silvia Todesco has tempted us with the Italian Cookery Column for the last two years.

Amazing visitors

Over the years there have been some wonderful regular guest writers bringing their expertise and skills to the blog including Robbie Cheadle, Joy Lennick, Linda Bethea, Paul Andruss, Daniel Kemp, Wendy Janes and Sarah Calfee

The other area of support that is without a doubt a reason I am still here, is from those who tirelessly log on to read posts, to comment and share on social media. As an audience they are outstanding and many have been motivating me from the beginning, and I am so delighted to have formed friendships that sustain and inspire.

So have I got the seven year itch?

I am not ready to call it quits just yet as I feel I have a few more years left in me before they drag me kicking and screaming away from my keyboard. Also I don’t do boredom very well and would be sure to get up to mischief if I was not gainfully occupied with the blog.

I did feel however that it was time to bring in some elements to add new look and feel to the blog. For example, in the last two months the Children’s Café and Bookstore has got off the ground and has grown from the original 17 authors to 31 with more being added in the next few weeks. Children’s books are so colourful and hopeful and that is definitely something we can all us about now.

I am going to make some more tweaks in the next few months and look forward to what the next seven years might bring.

The gift that keeps giving.

For me blogging is about people and the gift of friendship. If it was not for the relationships that have developed over the last seven years I would not still be here, and would certainly not be considering continuing.

I have met a few people that I regularly communicate with face to face, but the majority will always be online. But that doesn’t matter as the warmth and support is as real as any offline relationship, and as important, especially when life is not going as well as it might. This last eight months has been an excellent example of how we can suddenly find ourselves isolated from the world and in need of daily contact to stay mentally and emotionally healthy.

At any time night or day, there is always someone to chat to around the world. Who would have thought, even 7 years ago,  that one day we would be able to ‘chat’ to someone in Australia or Thailand at breakfast time as they end their day, and then 10 hours later, someone in California as they begin theirs.

Here is an image that is a tribute to just a handful of those whose support I value so highly in this online world of ours.

About Sally Cronin

After a career in customer facing roles in the hospitality, retail, advertising and telecommunications industry, I wrote and published my first book in 1999 called Size Matters, about my weight loss journey, losing 150lbs in 18 months. This was followed by 13 further fiction and non-fiction books, including a number of short story collections. 

My aim was to create a watering hole on my blog to provide a wide number of topics to chat about…..This year in September 2020, Smorgasbord in its current format, celebrated its 7th anniversary. 

As important as my own promotion is, I believe it’s important to support others within our community. I offer a number of FREE promotional opportunities on my blog, linked to my social media. 

Having lived a nomadic existence most of my life, I am now settled on the coast of Wexford in Southern Ireland with my husband of 40 years, enjoying the odd sunny day and the rain that puts the Emerald in the Isles.

My Latest Book – Life’s Rich Tapestry 

Life’s Rich Tapestry is a collection of verse, microfiction and short stories that explore many aspects of our human nature and the wonders of the natural world. Reflections on our earliest beginnings and what is yet to come, with characters as diverse as a French speaking elephant and a cyborg warrior.

Finding the right number of syllables for a Haiku, Tanka, Etheree or Cinquain focuses the mind; as does 99 word microfiction, bringing a different level of intensity to storytelling. You will find stories about the past, the present and the future told in 17 syllables to 2,000 words, all celebrating life.

This book is also recognition of the value to a writer, of being part of a generous and inspiring blogging community, where writing challenges encourage us to explore new styles and genres.

A Selection of Other Books


 

Links

Café and bookstore book promotion: https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/smorgasbord-cafe-and-bookstore-free-author-promotion/

Children’s Café and Bookstore: https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/smorgasbord-childrens-cafe-and-bookstore-free-book-marketing/

Blog: https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Sally-Cronin/e/B0096REZM2

Twitter: https://twitter.com/sgc58

Thanks again Marcia for your kindness and support it is always appreciated…

175 thoughts on “#GuestDayTuesday – The Gift of Blogging by Sally Cronin

  1. Sally exemplifies the best in what blogging is all about. She is supportive, looks out for her fellow bloggers, and exemplifies how bloggers should treat one another.

    Liked by 4 people

  2. I didn’t realise, when I first met Sally in October 2016, that her cafe was a recently launched undertaking. I quickly knew that Sally was the perfect blogging role model for me and I followed a lot of what she does with reading and commenting on other blogs and writing articles to be shared by other bloggers. Cheers to Sally, and may her blog go from strength to strength.

    Liked by 6 people

  3. Reblogged this on: https://harmonykent.co.uk/guestdaytuesday-the-gift-of-blogging-by-sally-cronin/ and commented: Hi everyone! I hope this week is being kind to you so far. Today, Blogger and supporter extraordinaire, Sally Cronin, is chatting over at Marcia Meara’s place. I had to hop straight onto my computer to share this, as this lady holds a special place in my heart >>>

    Great post, ladies! And it’s lovely to get to know the awesome Sally a bit better. Have a great week, both. Hugs xx 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Hats off to Sally and Marcia for bringing us this neat read. Sally is a tremendous supporter of writers and authors the world over and I, for one, have been fortunate to be a guest. I think I speak for all of us, Sally, when I say a HUGE thank you for your ongoing support. Hope to see you around for many more years. And thanks for your stories.

    Liked by 3 people

  5. It’s great to see Sally here. I remember her as one of the first people I came across when I started blogging, and I’ve been following her ever since. She’s also been kind enough to feature my books in her café, and she’s always a great supporter of authors, artists and all kinds of good causes, as well as providing us great stories, invaluable information and plenty of laughs. Thanks, Marcia, and to many more years of Smorgasbord!

    Liked by 3 people

    • I’m so glad you enjoyed Sally’s post today, Olga. She’s a very special person who’s been a wonderful support for all of us! It was my privilege to have her join us today, and thanks for letting her know how you feel. 🙂 ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  6. How wonderful to find Sally featured on your beautiful blog site, Marcia! This is an excellent post about inspiration, kindness and so much more. I love it — and I love you and Sally! Bravo to you both. ❤

    Liked by 3 people

  7. Sally is just the best! I have been following her from the start as she lived in Spain and I was planning to move there. She has been so supportive and through Sally, I have made so many new blogging friends. She has been the glue that has kept us all together. I have introduced her and her blog to many of my friends and followers too. I love how the networking has worked so well. Meeting Sally was the best thing that happened to me since I started my blog. Thanks for featuring her, Marcia.

    Liked by 3 people

    • How nice to hear how Sally has touched your life, Darlene. She has certainly reached out to the entire blogging and writing community with her support and friendship, and I’m delighted to learn how long you’ve been friends with her. She’s sure made a difference in many of our lives, huh? Thanks so much for stopping by and taking a moment to let Sally know how you feel! 🙂 ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Sally… echoing the words of praise from those who have already commented… you are one in a million and we are a richer blog world for your consistently creative efforts. And we are a richer world period for your existence! Love you to the moon and back and I thank you for all you have done to support me and my creative endeavors. ❤

    Liked by 3 people

  9. How wonderful to see Sally here, Marcia. She’s my blogging idol. Lol. I’ve said it a thousand times and I’ll say it again: I don’t know how she does it all. One thing I like about Sally’s blog is how it’s constantly evolving with new ideas and features and new ways for other bloggers to engage. Her generosity abounds. Hugs to you both!

    Liked by 2 people

  10. Reblogged this on Smorgasbord Blog Magazine and commented:
    I was delighted to be the guest of author Marcia Meara today, sharing my thoughts on the gift of blogging and how Smorgasbord Blog Magazine got its name.. plus how it is team based with amazing contributors and guests writers who bring such diverse content to the blog. It would be lovely if you would head over to read… and comment of course.. thanks Sally .

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Thanks for this brilliant interview with Sally, Marcia. She mentions the gift of friendship and I’ve been on the receiving end of that friendship and touched by the lengths she’ll go to to support someone who needs it. You’ve both become truly valued friends of mine in the short time that I’ve been following your blogs. My life’s much the richer because of it. ❤ ❤ ❤

    Liked by 2 people

  12. What? Only 100 comments here? LOLLLLLLL. Fabulous to see Sally featured here today! And always something new to learn from Sal – like all the years we’ve been friends I never knew how she got the name for her blog. We’re always learning. And thanks for the mention Sal, Smorgasbord is my home away from home. Great feature Marsh! ❤

    Liked by 2 people

  13. I’ve read a lot about you, Sally, and even done a story or two of my own and yet, I keep learning more about the incredible range of your writing, blogging and life experience. Brava, sister! I’m glad you followed your own instincts and allowed the blog to grow. It is surely a valuable resource to many.

    Liked by 2 people

  14. What a lovely article, Sally – I so enjoyed reading your thoughts about what you do so wonderfully well and the history of Smorgasbord. Congratulations on reaching an amazing 7 years, and how exciting to have a million views! Toni x

    Liked by 2 people

  15. Sally has to win the award for the most selfless supportive blogger in our community. If only the world had more Sally’s in it, it would be such a better place 🙂
    So happy to see her here at another of my favourite blogs. Hugs to you both!

    Liked by 2 people

  16. Wow…such well deserved and wonderful accolades…Sally is the glue which holds us all together, It has been lovely to read how Smorgasbord came to fruition and gone from strength to strength but I am a firm believer that you get back what you give in this world by your actions and Sally you are a prime example of that…I have met many wonderful people through Sally’s blog whom I probably may never have met…Like Marcia and many others…Thank you, Sally, for your constant support…Hugs xx

    Liked by 2 people

  17. I hadn’t realised it was coming up to 7 years of blogging, Sally. Time sure does fly.

    Thank you for all you’ve done in the blogging and writing worlds. I know a lot of people have got themselves, their blogs and books noticed because of you and all the great work you do.

    And it was a pleasure to meet you in person at the Bloggers Bash in 2017. I’m one of the lucky ones to have met you.

    Congratulations and I’m wishing you continued success.

    Liked by 2 people

  18. Congratulations to Sally on her seven year milestone. As others have already said here, she is wonderfully supportive of bloggers and authors. I know many of the people who have found and follow my blog have come to it via Sally’s. I count her as both a blogging and a personal friend. Here’s to many more years of Smorgasbord.

    Liked by 2 people

  19. You had an exciting and fulfilling blogging journey, Sally. What you’re doing is no less than a full-time job of creating a well-rounded magazine. It’s more than a magazine for information. It provides on-going support for authors/bloggers. I appreciate all you’re doing with your blog and your continued effort to make it interesting and serving to the blogging community!

    Liked by 1 person

  20. Pingback: Smorgasbord Blog Magazine Weekly Round Up 1st – 7th November 2020 -Interviews, Streisand, War Poets, Short stories, Reviews, Books and funnies | Smorgasbord Blog Magazine

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