7 x 7 Award

I’ve been tagged by Caroline for this meme – woo-hoo, haven’t done a meme in ages!

1: Tell everyone something about yourself that nobody else knows.

2: Link to a post you think fits the following categories: The Most Beautiful Piece, Most Helpful Piece, Most Popular Piece, Most Controversial Piece, Most Surprisingly Successful Piece, Most Underrated Piece, Most Pride-worthy Piece.

3: Pass this on to 7 fellow bloggers.




1. Something people don’t know about me – tricky, after almost six years of blogging. I think everyone knows everything there is to know. Is there anything you want to know? I mean, seriously, we have no secrets.


The Most Beautiful Piece

Probably dates back several years now to another meme that went around my corner of the blogosphere, entitled I Am From.


The Most Helpful Piece

That’s difficult because I always try to write (what I think of as) helpful reviews.  So I’ll plump for something completely different, which is this piece I wrote about meditation. Not least because I find meditation very helpful myself, when I put aside the time to do it and don’t get up halfway through because I’ve remembered something vital that needs to be done….


Most Popular Piece

My most popular post is in fact Best Book Club Books, which was a dreadfully quick and careless thing I wrote one day when I hadn’t finished a book. It seems to attract masses of search engine queries. But the second most hits for a post goes to Wallace Stegner’s Crossing to Safety, which remains at the top of my posts list pretty much every day.


Most Controversial Piece

I admit I’ve never written anything that has sparked off something like an argument, and I would be horrified if I did. So again, I have to go for something different, which is this post I wrote when a graduate student was a bit over persistent in asking me out for dinner. The upshot was that he retracted the invitation somewhat huffily about a week later – so someone, somewhere showed him this post, I have to conclude.


Most Surprisingly Successful Piece

I suppose this one probably goes to What is Existentialism? Which also features near the top of my all time top posts page. It’s nice to know people still care about Existentialism – although a significant percentage are probably students struggling to write essays.


Most Underrated Piece

It’s always the posts that I pour my heart and soul into that fail to get hits, particularly when I do a lot of critical analysis (I love analysis, even about books I haven’t read). I really enjoyed writing about Willa Cather’s novella My Mortal Enemy a couple of weeks back but not a lot of people read it.


Most Pride-worthy Piece

This post on Nature vs Nurture was picked up and mentioned in the Washington Post. I was absolutely delighted.


Name seven other bloggers to pass this award onto:





Simon T.




19 thoughts on “7 x 7 Award

  1. Thanks for participating I was looking forward to your links.
    I’m not surprised by the most popular ones as I’ve noticed them in your side bar but some are new to me and I will read them soon. The most beautiful one I already did and do agree, it’s lovely.
    That’s indeed a pride-worthy thing to be featured by the Washington Post.
    I have a feeling that the sidebar widget “top posts” is part of the reason why some posts are constantly top posts. I think it’s the case on my blog and others thought so as well.
    I don’t know al of the bloggers you nominated.That will be another thing to do… Explore new blogs.

    • Caroline, I think you’re right. I’m sure the top posts widget becomes a self-perpetuating thing, although every now and then a random post makes it in for a while! I love these sorts of memes for the way they introduce me to new bloggers. It’s so hard to navigate the book blog world, a few handpicked favourite bloggers offers a pain-free way into unchartered territory. Thank you for inviting me to do the meme – I enjoyed it!

  2. That was a fun trip down memory lane! I’m not sure about calling this an award though, I have 8 1/2 years of blog posts to think about! I’ll try though 😉

    • 8 and a half years is quite something! Perhaps I should have ‘volunteered’ you for this, to stock up on misnomers! It’s rather nice, though, to think we have been blog buddies through most of those years. 🙂

  3. A marvellous collection of posts. – Including, of course, the one on ‘My Mortal Enemy’. You’ve made me feel guilty now for not saying so at the time!

  4. I enjoyed your My Mortal Enemy post. I’m glad you wrote it! I’m impressed (though it’s entirely deserved and more!) that the Washington Post picked up Nature vs Nurture. I can never guess what posts of mine will attract traffic. The most spectacular one was my post about tick bites! And the odd thing is that the huge traffic began about a year after I wrote it. Someone must have linked to it somewhere popular.

    • Lilian – if you feel like doing the meme, please do! I’d love to see your answers. I remember the tick bite post – it IS amazing, isn’t it, what emerges as popular in the long run! And thank you for enjoying the Willa Cather post. I just love her.

  5. Ah, I enjoyed reading this – I haven’t been reading your blog for the full six years, so these were all new to me. I enjoyed your take on meditation, which is something I always try to incorporate into my day, but usually skip just when I need it most.

    Also good to know where you’re from 🙂

    • Andrew, bless you for going through the posts! And oh that is so true – I always forget to meditate just when I need it most. What’s that all about, I wonder? The short answer of where I’m from is Essex. But I don’t give that one very often! 🙂

  6. On the Wallace Stegner post I agree with the first two sentences – “What indefinable quality haunts the first few lines of a truly masterful, classy book? How come you sometimes know, just a few sentences in, that you have entered a safe, timeless zone, in which something magical is about to happen? ”

    There is something in some books that just grabs you from the mnoment you pick it up. If I knew exactly what that quality was I’d be a published author instead of an unpublished one!!

    The ‘I am from’ post was from the days before I found your blog (thanks to Danielle) . I think it’s brilliant and am now desperate to do my own version.

    This was a great Meme.

    • Once a librarian – you could do this too, yes? It would be fun to see your answers, particularly the I Am From meme (I’ll watch out for that!). And I’m so glad you know what I mean about that special something that just hauls you into a book – I do so wish I knew what it was, too!

  7. I haven’t done anything like a meme for some time – they seem to have fallen out of favor lately. But I will go back and re-read your post about Crossing to Safety, because that is one of my all time favorite books. And I’ll probably want to read the book again, too!

    • Becca – haven’t they just? Do you think it’s because we are the, ahem, mature ladies of the book blogging community? Still, I’d love to see your answers to this meme, too, if you felt like doing it. And oh Crossing to Safety – there’s a book I will reread one of these days. Just perfect!

  8. Pingback: Something you didn’t know about me | Andrew Blackman

  9. Yea! A meme for me, memes being reminiscent of the good old days, which this post most certainly is, encouraging me to revisit things of yours I remember from the days you first wrote them. I’m quite sure that my “Where I’m From” was my most beautiful post as well. I wonder how many others who participated in that meme would feel the same. I won’t get into theorizing about that. Will just say how much fun it is to walk down Memory Lane with you (it’s also a bit melancholic, like all walks down such lanes are) and also comment on the fact that I can’t believe it’s “memory lane.” Have we really been posting for nearly six years already (closer to a decade than not)? Egads!

    • Emily – where did our golden blogging days go? It seems a while since we were a girl gang with bloglily and Courtney and Dorothy W (as she was then). Still, Stefanie and Danielle are still holding on, as are we, on our good days! And yes, six years as blog buddies – we should have a virtual hug for that, shouldn’t we? 🙂

  10. Looking back on some of those posts I seem to have missed a few, so I will be reading them now! (Including the one on My Mortal Enemy–I’ve fallen behind as usual in blog reading). I feel the same way–often it is the posts I spend so much time on and fiddle with as I loved a book so much that get the least notice! It’s a good way to revisit posts. And thanks for tagging me–I’m planning on sharing my own posts, but will need a few days to work on it! 🙂 By the way–I see you are reading Chekhov–I just moved poor Colm Toibin back to the floor pile (will finish his story collection later) in favor of Chekhov’s early stories–I’m looking forward to hearing what you think of him!

  11. Just seen this! Thanks for tagging me – I will have to ponder on’t, since I think answering those seven categories would be nigh-on impossible… I never remember what posts I’ve written, unless they’re book reviews. But it sounds fun, so I’ll give it a whirl!

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