February 15, 2017

#BlogLove - Celebrating 8 Years of Blogging But...

I take on the baton of Blog Love from Stephen !

Anniversaries are commemorative of the years gone by and a way to feel nostalgic about the memories built over time. Both of these parts are equally significant in this celebration. While the amount of time spent is a great memory, the productivity in that particular span of time cannot be overlooked.

I have written about my blogging journey in the past. I celebrate 15th February because I cherish these years and this part of my life very much. But as much as I want to climb up in levels as a blogger, it still remains a "hobby". The past year has dawned a steep sense of this fact in me. While 2016 was beautiful and I have shared that vividly on social media, it did pose a challenge for me to pencil in blogging in my schedule. I had to work harder than ever before to juggle work, personal life and blogging. I couldn't even manage an average of 2 posts a month, let alone taking it to new levels like daily blogging etc.  It has made me wonder, if, say 5 years from now, I would be able to do this any more or not, if I stay a part timer.

So, this year for my anniversary post, instead of reiterating history, I sought suggestions from fellow bloggers and writers who do this part time too. This is one part I would be very proud of - building and keeping fantastic relationships with the "who's who" of the Indian blogging. It took me only an email which shared my idea and perspectives with them and all of the kind suggestions came pouring in.

Whether I will celebrate 9th or the 10th #Blogversary or not, I would live with the satisfaction of being a part of this fantastically close knit community of bloggers, for as long as I have!

With that said, Happy Anniversary to #WritefullyYours! Thanks for all the good times, chances for expression and the love that came in!

The floor is now open for geniuses with their ideas!

Kala Ravi

I guess it is no great brainwave I am sharing but it's just that blogging comes as a respite to one's daily struggles and strife. I blog when I am overwhelmed with the urge to vent out thoughts crowding my head. When I put down these thoughts on my blog, I find a sense of relief and tremendous satisfaction. I would say it is a therapeutic or cathartic experience for me, every time I do a post. So my dear friend, just blog as if you were letting out your thoughts, raves or rants into the ears of a patient friend and a chore it will never seem to be! And like a good friend, your blog will cheer you up with the comments from your readers, keep you motivated and egg you on to do more, do better each time you post.

I suggest, every time you are inspired, just jot down the basic idea, a few lines or whatever strikes you and later refer to these when you are sitting down to do a post. Evernote, I've heard helps with this, maybe you could give it a try.
No regulation, no time management in place yet! But just make a conscious effort to be in sync with what's trending in the blogging world. Most of the times, I get jittery seeing the whole world putting up post after post, but it also ensures I come up with one of my own for every hundred I come across. The post takes just an hour to put down, if you have all the framework, keynotes in your head in advance. Polishing n editing are equally important. So overall two hours/post/week should be good enough provided the wheels are turning through the week, cooking up the steam for it!


I truly love writing and blogging. Since I also work in the writing domain, I guess, blogging becomes second nature to me. Hence I haven't really found it that difficult to blog. Actually it provides me with a great vent and an outlet where I get great support and suggestions. I would tell you to not fret too much. Enjoy what you write and only write when you find time. I can never write under pressure and I would suggest that you do the same. Just do it for pure enjoyment and happiness.


When I joined for post graduation in 2007, I actually wrote a 'farewell post' for the blog, sure I wouldn't have the hours to spare. I didn't actually. But I ended up still writing. And I've written through PG, when bedridden & in excruciating pain unable to move a limb, in operation Theatres and at all hours. And here, 12 years after I wrote my first post as an insecure Mbbs intern, I'm still writing as a specialist. 
My advice - don't let your thoughts go to waste. When an idea comes to you, note it down in your mobile. I have used Evernote for over half a decade and all those ideas still sit there. Often we get our ideas at the most insane moments (lying awake at night, stuck in a cramped bus)  and forget about them when we are actually free to write. So jot it down in points when it comes to you. Develop them at leisure later on. 
Find what you have to say, what you would like to talk about. And tell it. 


Congratulations on the commendable milestone. 8 years must feel magical! Here's raising a toast to the double digits. I share your love for blogging and I can imagine how difficult it is to stay dedicated. I know I have struggled. And then one fine day I gave myself the permission to take a break. Just like we head for a vacation from time to time to recharge our batteries, a break from the blog is not that bad an idea. Since then, the winter months are a little slow for me. Also because it is the most festive time of the year, at that time I want to make memories with loved ones and not be a social media addict. I have also realised after a break, my writing is more focused and my ideas are sharper. I manage to cut out the noise from my thoughts.
You found your special someone this past year. Life will happen. Be easy on yourself. You compete with no one but you. This is your race. You decide what is your priority and work according to that. There is no one right way to do this. You will learn on the job. And if you are real lucky, you will have an online diary for your kids and grandkids to refer to someday. 


Subha Rajagopal

The biggest challenge a part-time blogger faces is time crunch. That too if you are a working mother with a full-time job, the odds are not in your favor. By the time the daily meetings are over and deadlines are met, there is no more energy left! You cannot shirk your family duties nor your official responsibilities. Only way to save time is to cut down the 'fat' in your personal time. Limit your time for any activity you feel is unproductive. That is the only way to make time for blogging.
It is a day-on-day arrangement. Let me share with you how I am writing it now.
Today being a Saturday, is an official holiday for me. But no, I wasn't free. Far from it!
My son had a school function and half my day was consumed in it. The second half of the day involved taking him to his activity class and visiting my in-laws.
All this was in addition to the cooking, cleaning and laundry work that is reserved for the weekends.By the time I could sit to write this, it is already 10 pm here. It was just the resolve to keep writing that has made me sit and write it now.


I pass on the baton of Blog Love to Subha

December 31, 2016

#YearInReview: 2016 - The Year of Marriage, Re-branding, Travel and Books!


Dear 2016,

In a few hours, you will be History. Strange are the ways of Nature, that the Future and the Past lie on either side of that tiny fickle Present. One would think that if the concept of Time was so critical, Mother Nature would let us breathe a little and embrace a moment, before moving on to the next one!
Alas, that's not quite Her way.

But you, dear 2016, still managed to get a whole extra day in your name. It's no mean feat to get a phenomenon, that happens once in over 2 million moments! Kudos, to you mate!

Please, pardon my myopia, but I can look at your greatness only through your impact on my life. This is a limitation of "being a human" where we tend to gauge the greatness of time by its consequences on our meager selves. 

On me, you had 4 major consequences:

1. Getting Married

No matter how you get judged by historians, you would remain a memorable year for me - the one that got hitched to my destiny!

The single greatest highlight that you gave me, my dear 2016, is this lovely lady - how did you pull that off! Seriously, how! 💓

Happy New Year, New Year, YearInReview, #Blog, #Blogging, #writefullyyours, #Amwriting, writingtips, #vlog, #Photoblog, Marriage, Wife, #travel, Faith, Family, #Love, Marriage has been a blessing and feels like a gift that would keep on giving! I had many moments this year when the simplest of things left me awed, just because of the person next to me. The wedding itself was an unforgettable extravaganza, not just for us, but for everyone who attended it. It was a dream of our parents that was very beautifully and meticulously executed. It was also captured with equal diligence by the lens. I compiled that experience in my most famous piece this year - here!
2. Rebranding of Blog

Well, 2016, while you brought me within dangerous reach of the big 3-Oh!, my 7+ year blog reset its counter to 1 ! It was time for "Me and My Darkside" to make way for "Writefully Yours" ! The name and look change seemed inevitable to encompass the wider range of topics that I wanted to write on.
And I did!
2016, you saw my first #photoblog, my first #vlog, 3 posts on #DonaldTrump and a few #Instablogger posts specific for #microfiction.
The blog also got some cool widgets, share tools and finally, a subscription option.
Not bad for a part-timer, eh!

3. Travel

As a newly wed couple, we got really lucky to have got many opportunities to travel in one year.
You, my dear 2016, did something that your past 7 predecessors couldn't! You got my parents to the United States!
With them being here for a limited time, coupled with our wanderlust, we covered 7 states and over 10 destinations, in about 3 months. That's almost one destination every weekend! Now, that's an American Summer!

Happy New Year, New Year, YearInReview, #Blog, #Blogging, #writefullyyours, #Amwriting, writingtips, #vlog, #Photoblog, Marriage, Wife, #travel, Faith, Family, #Love,
In My Favorite City of Chicago, IL !

4. Books

Of all the accomplishments, this is the one I am most proud of! I developed a reading routine during my office lunch hour and was therefore, able to read almost every working day. My schedule and routine, coupled with a new marriage and a few other hobbies, do not leave me enough time for reading at home. Hence, this worked perfectly. I read everyday for 20-40 minutes and found it incredibly relaxing and satisfactory.

I cannot recommend enough to read Palace of Illusions by Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni. My abilities as a writer are not enough to describe the experience that was reading this magnificent book. For politics buffs like I, The Wilderness by McCay Coppins is a good read too.

I finished the classic Jonathan Livingston Seagull on my last working day of 2016, hence bringing a perfect closure to a good habit. I already have books lined up for 2017!

Thank You, 2016

It's always fun to sit down in December and recount 12 months of a year. Barring some irreparable loss or a family tragedy, everything, quite funnily, seems in control, in these days. There is something in our attitude, as humans, that makes us stronger with every passing year and for that reason, come every January, the World seems more hospitable and within reach.

For renewing my belief in myself, yet again, Thank You, 2016. How 2017 would go, would depend a lot on the lessons that you have taught and the tests that you put us through.

To Faith and Belief, Cheers!