Welcome to the new site for my blog – danikate.com!
I’m so excited to bring you along on this journey with me. Blogging is something I have been wanting to do for years, but I’ve never been able to find my niche. I’d like to take danikate.com and write about things I’m truly passionate about – books, television, coffee, introversion, and life as I’ve experienced it.
I read a quote by Natalie Goldberg recently that I hope to use as motivation for this blog once I get my feet wet, so to speak:
Write what disturbs you, what you fear, what you have not been willing to speak about.
So in honor of her words, let’s get started with a few fun facts about me!
1. I’ve been to 11 different countries, outside of the United States.
I love to travel. Traveling within the United States is wonderful, but traveling internationally gives me that wanderlust high. So far, I’ve been to Austria, Canada, England, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Northern Ireland, Scotland, Switzerland, and Vatican City. I’ve also traveled to the Caribbean and visited Puerto Rico, Sint Maarten, and St. Thomas.
2. I am a dedicated night owl and hate mornings.
I. Love. The. Dark. I feel the most alive and creative after 8 p.m., and so I dread my early alarm clock in the morning (also, the sound is just horrific to my HSP personality – see below). There’s something so peaceful about being awake when most people aren’t. It’s like the world is full of possibilities, and no one will bother me about things I’m not passionate about. I don’t think twice about staying up until 3 a.m. reading a great book. If I’m tired the next day, so be it.
3. I love coffee and don’t believe in naps.
Those late nights mean I need a lot of coffee to get through my day. Why don’t I take a nap, you may ask? Most people expect you to be alert and productive during the daylight hours. Complaining that I’m tired and need a nap seems like an obnoxious thing to do, especially because it’s my fault I was up so late the night before. Besides, when you’re an insomniac and it takes over an hour just to fall asleep, naps aren’t really an option. Therefore, coffee. Lots and lots of coffee.
4. I love British television and other period dramas.
I find the humor in British/U.K. television incredibly entertaining, often more so than a lot of American shows. Therefore, programs like Fresh Meat, Him & Her, My Mad Fat Diary, Misfits, Luther, Catastrophe, Pramface, The IT Crowd, Merlin, and Cuckoo remain among my top favorites.
I also love period dramas. When done right the costumes and set designs knock me off my couch, and I’m instantly addicted. Sometimes these programs are made for the U.K., while other times they just happen to be set there. A few of my favorite “period” dramas include Downton Abbey, The White Queen, Reign, Outlander, The Crown, and Peaky Blinders.
5. I read 61 books in 2016 and hope to read 75 in 2017.
I am an avid reader and can’t remember a time in which I wasn’t. I have to credit my mother with this, as I grew up always seeing her with a book in her lap. I’ve even followed in her literary footsteps and prefer many of the same genres as she does, including paranormal romance and urban fantasy. I take great pride in my reading endeavors (i.e. my Goodreads Reading Challenge) and love that I share this passion with my mom.
6. I prefer Byronic heroes and complex characters.
I read somewhere that most plotlines are quite simple. Instead, it’s the characters going through those situations and reacting to them that make the story compelling. As noted above, I read quite a bit and have found this to be true. Perhaps this is why I tend to find that urban fantasy and paranormal-set genres are more intriguing for my chaotic mind. These two genres hold my interest and pull me in more than any of the others.
Yes, the plotlines are often very similar, but the characters in these genres are usually very complex. I find greater satisfaction in watching a character evolve and find redemption, as opposed to cookie cutter romance. I am by no means putting those books down (and I do read them on occasion!), I just happen to prefer characters that are darker and more conflicted.
7. I fall into the INFJ personality category on the Meyers-Briggs Type Indicator.
There are a million opinions on the validity of personality tests, but I have found them to be crucial in understanding who I am and why I do the things I do. I struggled for a very long time trying to figure out why I felt so different than the people around me. When I started reading about personality tests in my early twenties, I discovered I was an INFJ. It may sound silly, but it felt like my entire world had changed.
I had always found it so hard to put names on my strengths (determined, creative, altruistic) and weaknesses (extremely private, easily burned out, and perfectionist). The MBTI test helped me to recognize these things within myself and see how they were affecting the personal and professional parts of my life. Becoming more self-aware has helped me to keep things in perspective. I don’t take things as personally as I used to, which has removed a lot of the anxiety I used to feel.
Finally, look at me here writing to you on the Internet! I have always been extremely private, but that aforementioned self-awareness has helped me to realize that even though I find writing to the public a little terrifying, it’s something I want to do. Have I sparked your curiosity? Take the MBTI personality test!
8. Sometimes I’m an “HSP,” or a highly sensitive person.
Being “highly sensitive” is something I have recently discovered. I had heard about the concept in passing but thought it didn’t apply to me because I’m able to overcome my little annoyances pretty easily. However, one of my favorite bloggers did a post about how HSP is not one thing, it is a scale. After taking the self-test, I realized that I am highly sensitive after all.
Being an HSP doesn’t necessarily mean that you take things very personally or are unable to be around certain triggers. For me, it means that I hate white LED light, the sound of my alarm clock and a ringing phone, and am easily distracted in open environments. So if I miss your phone call or text, please know that I’m not screening my calls! I just have my phone on silent. Knowing that I’m not crazy, just a little more sensitive to the environment than other people, has helped me make adjustments that have made me much happier.