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Saturday 20 February 2010

The Sunday Roast

Oscar Was 'Wildely' Wrong To Call This 'Fhina' Lady 'A Woman Of No Importance'

Love the photoshop touches, Fhina

An MGM Production too, I notice - Come on give us a roar!!
Ahhh! That's better!

This week's interview is with Fhina
who writes the blog, A Woman Of No Importance

Thank you Fhina

A very warm welcome to you and your followers

Here's the first of the standard questions. Why do you blog?

I started as a virgin blogger here: Memoirs of a Virgin Blogger - Prologue in January 2009 after leaving comments on favourite blogs for months... Blogging gets right under your skin, and I found myself beginning to think a lot about the people whose words I'd had the pleasure of reading, that is when I wasn't actually sitting right at home, blogging like a loon myself... Blogging, for me, has been such a journey. It's taken me to visit some incredible corners of the world when I was confined to the sofa for almost six months recovering from disk injuries, and I have got to know some fantastically talented writers and wonderful friends, and they are firm friends. I feel very honoured to be a part of such a fabulous writing community, many of whom have yet to even trouble publishers' doorsteps... Given all the carp that's out there these days, I think I've found treasure in 'Blogworld'.

What's the story behind your blog name?

When I first started out in Blogworld, I wrote this:

"I am A Woman Of No Importance, or maybe some days I'm just feeling sorry for myself! You know, when you look around you and find you've aged inexorably, the body isn't what it was, the face is showing signs of needing serious attention, and you haven't seen your 'Hairdresser To The Stars,' (well that's what it said on his DUI rap sheet!), in oh, too long?"

I have always adored the writings of dear Oscar Wilde, so A Woman Of No Importance, one of his less well-known plays, seemed like the right monicker for me, as I was in a pretty low spot at that time. I began by reading blogs and commenting, and ended by starting my own - And all the attention and lovely thoughts, words and wishes received from other, more experienced and talented, bloggers make me stick to the genre like a fly to paper! Oh, and if anyone's interested, I found a fab new hairdresser in the end! I had to to look so good for my photo opportunity with Edward Cullen!

Well Fhina, it's all about "The Importance Of Being Earnest", when I say you are far from being "A Woman Of No Importance".

What is the best thing about being a blogger?

The people... I think we always find ourselves saying this, yet it's so true. I have made true friends via Blogworld both in the UK and the US and beyond, who have lifted me out of myself and made me into a better, more thoughtful, person. They make me laugh with their wry humour, cry about their beautiful words, deeds and life-stories, and you get to know one another so well in such detail via blogs, it's easy to get to appreciate, love and support people... I am ever effuse with my air-kisses and 'Mwahs!,' but they mean the world to me, these fair folks, and I love them all, bloggy dahlinks... Other bloggers are the best thing about being a blogger... That, and the revenue you get from advertising! (Only kidding, but ask Chairman Bill if you want to know about that!)

What key advice would you give to a newbie blogger?

Start! Seriously, be true to yourself and don't be intimidated. When I began, I looked up to people like Saz at (so not) Fat, Frumpy & Fifty (now Fat, Feisty & Fifty) and wanted to be as creative and as colourful as she is. Auntie Gwen at auntiegwensdiary made me envy her fun, rock-chic lifestyle and her Beautiful Children. I wanted to be as worthy as Diane at Diane's Addled Ramblings, who has aspirations to be a newspaper columnist. Diane's home-spun slices of American small-town life and wisdom just blow me away. And my darling Blognut at More Mindless Rambling is sooooooooo funny, I wish I could summon up a jot of her wit and intelligence...I was in awe of gorgeous Braja at Lost and Found in India, and was gob-struck reading Vodkamom, who is an enormously talented teacher, earth-angel and scream... And then these stars and talents of 'Blogworld' start to talk to you and leave witty, pithy, funny comments when you blog, and you get to hang on to their shirt-tails and whoosh along with them through the bloggy firmament. It's wonderful. Join us!I would also say read a lot, make masses of comments and get to know other bloggers, but find your own style. Bloggeros and bloggeristas are very caring, sharing and generous people... Do read and listen to their words. Writing is an enormous discipline and practice is everything... And don't take yourself too seriously.

What is the most significant blog post you've ever read?

Good Lord, this is not easy to answer, and I'm reluctant to go on and on like Gwynnie in her Oscar acceptance speech, but there's every risk of it! Just about everything I've ever read is never less than significant and full of meaning and I choose the blogs I read carefully... I am in awe of all those in my blog reader list, or whatever it's called - I'm not that techie a person! Lakeviewer and Jinksy... Saz sometimes makes me cry with her words, and Suldog and Scriptor are bold, wise, funny men. And you've already featured Meredith Teagarden. Heart-stoppingly beautiful writing, all...

What is the most significant blog post you've ever written?

On Wednesday 29 April 2009 I wrote, Let me sign... about the myth that surrounds those with great talent - The suspicion that many have brokered a deal with the devil while standing at the crossroads on the dark side of town. I was awarded Post of the Day by dear David McMahon and, although Fhina's flippancy is writ large through it, it must have been one of my most respected pieces of froth to win a much-coveted award...For me, the paeon that I wrote to my dad, was very significant. I've sort of avoided writing about my parents because my feelings on their passings are still very raw and not yet worked through... I will get there some day, I swear, but My father and me on Thursday 25 June 2009 was a start...

If you were to suggest two blogs for roasting who would you pick, and why?

Eddie, you and David have already had many of my favourite writers on the spit on Sunday, but I think I will plump for these fellas - (I see you've already featured John, who goes by the name of Scriptor Senex, is a sweet and brave knowledgeable writer whose daily ramblings put so many of us in the shade) and the ascerbic wit and frightening intelligence of Chairman Bill at The Thoughts Of Chairman Bill , (ask him to tell you about how he started his blog via an e-bay classified ad for his Dutch Barge! Inspirational and argumentative, he is!). Julie, or French Fancy, currently in Brittany, is a wonderful raconteur. I just wish she'd tell more of her theatre and film stories! If you want to skate Over The Pond, Eddie, my dahlink Diane at Diane's Addled Ramblings and Bloggus Nuttus at More Mindless Ramblings are both incredibly bright and hard-working writers and mums and VodkaMom is a riot, so is Auntie Gwen at auntiegwensdiary and I really love Derrick at Melrose Musings, as well.

(Fhina, that is a feast of recommendations - thank you)

Pick three things you can't live without (no you cannot have ice cubes to cool you down while I roast you!)

1. A scintillation of happiness on the horizon.
2. Holidays in Europe - I feel far more like the real me whenever I'm in Europe. My clothes fit better, I exercise more because the weather is usually better than it is my remote northern corner of the UK... I enjoy a little sunshine and greater warmth and I feel that people are a little more open and 'out there' than the British can sometimes be... Dare I say that I feel I can be a little madcap and crazy in Europe, and I don't stand out as much as I do on our bejewelled isle... I don't think that makes sense, but then I rarely do!
3. The love of my husband and son. I'm an adult orphan with no siblings, and that I feel very strongly. My tiny, nuclear, family unit means a lot to me at this point in my life. Hey, we're not perfect, but we're all that we've got! I'd include mes bloggy friends in that one too!

If we were to make a movie about blogland, what would it be and who would you cast in the leading roles?

It would have to be Jane Eyre, my favourite ever. I'd have to cast you. Eddie, or Grumpy Old Ken as Mr Rochester, Sazzie as Jane, the heroine (although she'd have to dull down a lot to be taken as "poor, plain and Quakerish!"), and I'd be the Madwoman In The Attic, of course! I'd need no make-up or clothes, but hair extensions would probably be nice! Suldog could be the big scary-friendly dog, Pilot, and Derrick of Melrose Musings could be the lovely vicar, (as long as he didn't mind), and the rest of Blogworld would all find a place in the multi-faceted plot, I'm sure!

If you were an ice cream cone, which flavour would you prefer and who would you most want to lick you?

Ooh, you are saucy, Eddie, but I like you! Round these parts, ice cream cornets that come from ice-cream vans are served with a crimson, raspberry sort of sauce, which they call 'Monkey's Blood'. I can't quite get over that gothic horror! On high days and holidays, come rain or come shine, I love our local take-away Doddington Dairy ice-cream with Newcastle Brown Ale (what else!) fudge flavoured pieces - Yum... Failing that the home-made chocolate ice-cream that is purveyed at our local Morwick Dairy is the best in the world... You can even pat the cows whose milk makes the ice-cream so creamy! Dare I say, I'm a bit of an ice-cream addict??! As for a licking down, I'll quote an old favourite - "Why don't you come up and see me sometime, big boy!"

(Ok, Mae West! - it's a date but please be gentle with me because now I have an artificial hip LOL)

Describe in one sentence your perfect day.

Only one sentence, Eddie, that's impossible for me!
Here goes: "Sunshine after sweet, dreamless sleep, lying in, blogging and reading a good book in bed and a lazy lunch at a country pub with my, for once, not arguing, family'.

If you were a fictional writer which one would you be and why?

I really like the life that real-life writer, Val McDermid has in Alnmouth, Northumberland, pottering about from her home to her desk in a converted outbuilding in her garden. Alnmouth is a very inspirational place to live, I've always thought, and I'm sure even I could become a full time writer if I lived there! Val is a crime writer and, although I have no aspirations to that genre, I think she's undeniably brave in all that she does.

And finally I invite you to ask me one question - it's the least I can do after all this.
How would you describe your motto in life? What words do you live by? (I think that's two questions, but I am greedy - All that talk of ice-cream - The freezer is making its siren song to me just now! The motto I always try to live by is, 'Je ne regrette rien'). Take care, much love - Mwah!

Oh that Mwah! was very nice and I like your question, Fhina! I always think of my dear grandmother when I am asked a question like this. She had a series of phrases which contain a wealth of advice and I regard them as a blueprint for life. I am greedy too so I shall recite three which I remember from my childhood (a long time ago!):

Be the matter what it may, always speak the truth.

Do unto others as you would be done by.

Never borrow, never lend - then you'll never lose a friend.

All are impossible to follow to the letter, of course, but they help.

Thank you Fhina for this highly informative and enjoyable interview. What a great way to get to know people - I am indeed very privileged.


Today's Sunday Roast with Fhina is the 104th in a weekly
series of interviews with bloggers from around the world. _____________________________________________

This interview will feature in The Roll of Honour
for all published Roasts. To view press HERE

Next week, Debbie at A Single MOM in a complicated world


  1. Fabulous interview!! I love Fhina and this interview tells why! She is a true gem in blogland.

  2. Bless you, Slommler! Fabulous, Eddie dahlink!

    Of course, I'll be gentle with you - You with your hip, me with my back!

    I hope you feel wonderful soon, Sir, and thank you so for my little (over-long, I do not 'do' short!) featurette...

    Oh, and I love your grannie's mottos and may well be saying them out loud some time soon.

    "I'm ready for me close-up now, Mr de Mille!" Mwah!

  3. The Woman Of No Importance writes very important advice and I have seen her name all over the place so I think she is more important than she realises.
    Great interview. Will have to look this lady up now.......

    Nuts in May

  4. great roast. heading over to make her acquaintance. monkey's blood...nice.

  5. as always a fun interview! I have the pleasure of following her already!!:) and we have a mutual recommendation and friend! its amazing and WONDERFUL what a small world blogland becomes! hoping you are well Eddie...

  6. Nice to see one of my good buddies being done to a turn! She's a rare dish!

  7. Thanks for continuing to introduce us to new and interesting bloggers. Great interview~

  8. Well done Eddie, this lady sounds wonderfully interesting, am off to pay her a visit.....:-) Hugs

  9. I'm going to her site, too!
    Great roast, my friend....
    Smiles to you from Jackie

  10. An entertaining interview! This was great!

    And it's great to hear that you are home, Eddie. High hopes you'll be feeling better soon.

  11. Ah Eddie! Such a great choice. Fhina is a delight. Thank you for bringing her blog to the attention of the wider audience she so richly deserves.

    I've ditched the cane and the loo rails, Eddie. Hope your progress is as good as mine. XXX

  12. You may be a newcomer to blogging but you're a natural, all down to honesty and lack of pretentions,

  13. Ken, pretentious, moi?!! Love you lots, many thanks for your so kind words, all...

    A girl could get very big-headed around such lovely friends as these...

    Mwah, Eddie! Get well soon, petal! x

  14. AAAAAAM so pleased to read Fhina here at long last, l know that this has been simmering for some time... have had the privilege of meeting with Fhina over in the toon and she is just as you read her, and l am honoured to say she is my friend, true friend and tits thanks to blogland....

    I love this she writes from the heart....and she is the kindest of gals....if you havent visited yet make sure you do're in for a treat!!

    luv ya soon..

    Sara xoxoxo

  15. Hi Eddie, How are you feeling??? I hope all's well.

    This was a terrific interview and a great introduction to a blogger I didn't know. Thank you so much. Fhina's explanation of her blog name was especially relevant to this 50-something. I'm off to check out her blog.

    Have a great week.

  16. Fhina is a fun person and read. Nice to see her featured. Good job as always, Eddie.

  17. "A Woman of No Importance" is on my blog roll, and now I know her real name, she has become even more of a "real person" and definitely one of importance. :-)

    I have not had time to visit many of my favorite blogs lately, *sigh*, so I am off to visit the very important (!!!) Fhina very soon.




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