Thursday, January 16, 2014

Get to Know Meg from "Meg Reads"

Hello everyone,

So as you know Meg has joined our little blog here and she specializes in book reviews. Her first review is already up and you can check it out here.

As Meg is new I thought it would be fun to do a post asking her some questions so you all can get to learn a little bit about her.

Let's get started...

Cate: Hello Meg, why don't you start by telling us a little bit about yourself?
Meg: Where to start, where to start. I just graduated with my BA in English Literature and my next goal to complete is becoming an elementary school teacher. Some of my passions, besides books, include films, art, and travel. I am a dog person who has a fondness for cats, but I would be a giraffe person if it was ethical and possible to keep them as pets. And I prefer scalloped potatoes to pretty much any sweets. Mostly I just enjoy spending time with my family, friends, and wonderful boyfriend.

Cate: What made you so interested in reading? Is it a passion you had since you were a child? 
Meg: I love that you can disappear so completely into a book you're reading and learn so much from the experiences of others, even those who are fictional. I can connect so much with what I read, the emotional pull keeps me coming back for more. I've also been drawn to analyzing and exploring the deeper levels and symbolic nature of the literature I read as well.

I've definitely always been a book worm since I was very young. I was shy and quiet and reading was something that challenged me to do better and be better. Reading isn't always easy, but the enjoyment and benefits you can get from it surpasses the difficulties. When it came to choosing a major in university English Literature was the natural choice.

Cate: What sort of genres are of particular interest to you?

Meg: I'm drawn to a variety of genres, but I'm particularly interested in memoirs or biography, all kinds of fiction, and children's literature. 

I find memoirs and biography inspiring. People are fasinating. Often real life is more mysterious, more interesting, and more magical than people can imagine. 

Fiction is a broad term, but I enjoy everything from poetic prose to thrillers to fantasy. I'm a huge fan of short stories as well, and can often be found devouring many in one sitting. 

Children's literature has been a huge draw for me, probably influenced by my love of children and my desire to teach. I even started a Children's Literature Book Club with my friends, including Cate, for a while where we talked about children and young adult fiction. I love that children's books can display such creativity and imagination while still conveying deep, universal truths that even grown-ups can appreciate.

Cate: Do you have any favourite authors? 
Meg: It's honestly so hard for me to narrow down, but here are some writers whose work I always enjoy...

Aimee Bender is an insanely creative and talented writer whose books and short stories I have immensely enjoyed. The stories she writes about I couldn't imagine in my wildest dreams, but there is so much depth and meaning to it. 

Simon Van Booy is an absolutely lovely writer whose pieces are inspiring and heartfelt. If I ever want to feel that life is good and meaningful, I read him. Even if the stories are sad, they are wraught with human emotion and realness and pure love.

JK Rowling has a way of always drawing me in with her subtelty and wit. I find her writing very well-thought out and planned, her plot connections and references are always masterful.

F. Scott Fitzgerald has such a bredth of work and much of it is very beautiful, absorbing and well-written. His short stories can be a bit hit and miss sometimes, but they are still worth engaging with.

Cate: How about your all time favourite novels? 

Meg: I would have to say Fugitive Pieces by Anne Michaels is my favourite novel (if I had to pick just one, which is really, really hard!). This novel tells the story of persons deeply effected by the Holocaust, exporing their traumas and memories in a very beautiful and poetic way. 

A close second would have to be The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint-Exupery. I have physical proof of my love of this story. It's incredibly charming and lovely with the sweetest message of love and kindness. 

Honourable mentions include: The Time Traveller's Wife, The Chronicles of Narnia, The Harry Potter series, The Great Gatsby, The Girl in the Flammable Skirt, and Jane Eyre... The list goes on and on... 

Cate: What made you decide to come on board and write these reviews for our little site? 
Meg: Well, first of all, my dear friend Cate so kindly asked me too, but have also I've been thinking about writing more and submitting my work different places and this was a great opportunity to get into the habit of writing regularly again.

Cate: Okay let's talk makeup and skincare for a sec which you know is my love. What are your holy grail skincare and beauty products?

Meg: I think it's best to keep it simple. A good cleanser and moisturizor are absolutely essential. I personally like Nivea, but I think you have to decide what works best for you and your skin. Everyone's different.
I think Maybelline makes a swell mascara. Personally I like to try new things. I don't necessarily think it's about the products themselves, but about how you use them. A fancy expensive product isn't going to be a miracle worker, it won't make you love how you look. How you look is something you have to accept and love by yourself. Besides, there are some really affordable brands out there that make great products, like NYX and ELF. I get most of my stuff on sale.

Cate: What is your number one beauty tip/secret?
Meg: Get enough rest, eat a proper diet, and drink enough water. And mosturize the hell out of your face.

Cate: What are some of your hobbies outside of literature?

Meg: I am an avid film watcher. I love movies of all kinds, but especially quirky independent movies, documentaries, and anything with Jennifer Lawrence.  I also do a lot of volunteering: Big Sisters, Girl Guides, and in a classroom as well. I think it's really important to be involved with your community. I love travelling and experiencing new things. I think you get to know a city's soul by walking. I do a lot of that.

Cate: Will you write about anything else other than literature on the site? If so, what? 

Meg: Occasionally! You never know when you might see a post from me about beauty, life, or travel!

Cate: Is there anything anything in the realm of literature that you are particularly looking forward to this year?

Meg: It's funny you should ask this, just wait until you see my next post about my Reading Resolutions for the year!

Well there you have it folks! I hope you enjoyed getting to know Meg as much as I did; we have known each other for over 6 years and even I learned a thing or two. 

A special thank you to Meg for taking the time to answer these questions. 

Make sure to keep coming back so you don't miss any of Meg's awesome, upcoming posts. 

- Cate. 

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