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Interview with:

meemalee [meemalee] 

What is your blog address? What subjects do you deal with?
www.meemalee.com meemalee's kitchen is a food blog, so mainly I write recipes, restaurant reviews, product reviews, TV reviews, and about other food-related distractions. I try to be mildly amusing and often end up being irreverent. It's also sometimes a Burmese food blog and I intend to write about other Burmese stuff too.
What was it that made you create your blog? On what date did you start it?
The MasterChef Final 2009 won by Mat Follas drove me to start typing on Friday 27 February 2009. I also wanted to see if I had an audience for the Burmese cookbook that I'm writing. For a longer answer, see http://www.meemalee.com/2010/02/year-in-meemalees-kitchen.html
What blogging system have you adopted and why?
I use Blogger as that seems the most widespread platform employed.
How many visits a day do you get? What type of comments do you receive?
100+ and almost all my comments have been friendly and positive thankfully :)
How has 'having a blog' contributed to your life?
Having a blog makes me more annoying at mealtimes as everyone knows that I need to take pictures! It's also made me more adamant to finish writing that Burmese cookery book that I always wanted to do - and if any publishers or agents are interested, I'd love to hear from them!
Have you created relationships with other bloggers or readers of your blog?
I've made several friends through my blog, mainly online but also in real life (fancy that). I've also been lucky enough to make some wonderful connections that simply wouldn't have been possible or imagineable a year ago. For example, I started my blog by writing about Mat Follas winning MasterChef 2009, and purely because of my blog (and Twitter), I found myself in the amazing position of having been given the opportunity to host a Burmese pop-up restaurant night at Mat's restaurant The Wild Garlic in October - see http://www.meemalee.com/2010/10/meemalees-kitchen-at-wild-garlic.html
How often do you post? Does regular posting of your blog require a lot of effort on your part?
When I first started, I'd post every other day but I realised that I simply didn't have the time (and was also ticking my other half off), so it's now about twice a week.
Does blogging bring in income for you? Can one make a living from posting?
No, and probably, but only if you're someone like Perez Hilton, I reckon. I used to have ads on the site, but that bothered me for aesthetic as well as ethical reasons, so now I'm ad-free.
How do you promote your blog?
I tweet about it and occasionally post on Facebook about it. I should probably try harder but I can't be asked. I did set up a Facebook fan page when I was feeling sorry for myself and amazingly some people have joined it http://www.facebook.com/pages/meemalees-kitchen/129052900460792
How would you define your readers? Have you got a faithful audience?
My readers are thoroughly good eggs, all with a great sense of humour. And yes, there are a couple of faithful readers who I love with all my heart!
Are there any blogs you follow daily or regularly?
Too many to mention but the ones on my blogroll at www.meemalee.com are a good start :) The one that inspired me to write my own though was www.noodlepie.com - a Vietnamese food blog written by journalist and social media guru Graham Holliday
Have you ever received gifts for blogging about your opinion of products or services? What do you think of bloggers who do that?
Full disclosure is mandatory. If by gifts you mean something in addition to the thing itself though, then that's not on. Ie if Walker's wants to give me a free box of crisps for me to blog about, that's fine, but if they give me some cash as well to "sweeten" the deal, then that's not fine. I do get occasional freebies such as dinners and cookery books, and it's a happy and completely unexpected consequence of my blog. I won't lie about what I think though.
How do you see your blog evolving in the future?
meemalee's kitchen will inevitably take over the world. Oh, and I intend to get a proper camera so my pictures will look a bit better.
What advice would you give to someone who wishes to begin a blog?
Don't do it. It sucks you in and makes you even geekier than before. Actually no, if you want to do it, go for it because it's fun and you get to connect with loads of like-minded people, but don't say I didn't warn you.

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[meemalee] meemalee
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