“Bethany Ashley feels wholly personal and welcoming whilst also feeling incredibly professional. It’s a well-structured and cohesive blog filled with truly original content and insights into Beth’s own creative work. We loved the glimpses into Beth’s life and the creative processes she shares on her blog – plus, check out her stand-out posts on feminism! With a podcast, magazine and ebook to boot, it’s clear Bethany is bursting with creativity and we can’t wait to see what she makes of #TheBlogRace challenges.”
WHO AM I?
As well as running this blog, Bethany is a writer, social media enthusiast, and student. She comes from the same place as Charles Darwin, Lord of the Rings, and Muller yoghurts (do with that what you will) in England, where milk to tea ratios can literally make or break friendships. Bethany has been writing professionally for around five years, and folding piles of paper in half, stapling the spines and writing in them since she was two. Bethany has written for several different outlets, which we’ll go on to explain shortly, however, in this blog, she mainly write opinion pieces, advice (for writing, blogging, mental health and anything I can provide my pinch of wisdom on) and post my own creations to give others advice and promote my work (these are usually my magazines, poetry, novel extracts, ect). You can email me at email@example.com you’d like to contact me, and you can download my media kit on my contact page. Or, I’m literally always on Twitter. If you’re wanting to work together in some capacity (blog collaborations, events, review, writing, interview, just want to say “hi”, the list goes on… then please don’t hesitate to get in touch, I’m friendly!
ONTO MY CREATIVE BACKGROUND…
Bethany Ashley is a multi-creative, who’s focuses now are writing, narrative journalism, publishing, blogging and podcasting. Bethany started freelance writing when she was fifteen (2011), writing for small outlets and small business’ blogs. All her freelance work can be viewed here, amongst the rest of her published work. Bethany wanted to further her creative skills and knew she would eventually like to work with magazines and publishing. Bethany began working in retail to earn money for train tickets to London, and then started a work experience placement at Bauer Media, attending several magazine workshops with Heat, OK!, Grazia, FHM, The Debrief and Closer. She worked one-on-one with journalists such as Boyd Hilton, learning how to produce entertainment magazines, and what exactly went into running a creative team to produce issues. When her freelancing career first began, Bethany wrote for publications such as The Muslim Gazette, BodyMatters, and wrote reviews and press releases for iAppAdapt. Bethany had hundreds of article ideas in her head that didn’t seem fit to publish with most of the companies she was working for, and so she started a blog where she could publish more personal pieces.
Her blog, at bethanyashley.com took off quickly, and within a year she managed to grow her following to 24,000 across her platforms. Wanting to utilise her platform, she began speaking out about issues like domestic abuse, sexism, and body image. Bethany is particularly proud of her ability to not hold back on talking about taboo subjects online, and it became her motto to use her blog for creativity, inspiration and motivation. She hopes for everyone who reads her blog to leave having learned a new skill, thought of a new idea, seen something they had a strong opinion on from another perspective, or feeling inspired motivated to create something new. She ocassionally publishes her own creations on her blog, such as magazine issues with a ‘behind the scenes’ element, showing how she creates certain things, her equipment, and how she executes particular techniques.
In 2015, Bethany enrolled at the University for the Creative Arts in Surrey to study a combined course in creative writing and journalism, where she was awarded the Sir Ray Tindle Scholarship. She has two fiction books in the works; a poetry/excerpts collection, and a fantasy novel. She also writes personal essays, and aims to publish those too. She hopes to have at least one of these creations published within the next two years. During Bethany’s first year at university, she co-founded the literary magazine Paperfox and became editor-in-chief of the publication. The magazine focuses on celebrating literature and shining some light on ameteur writers’ and artists’ creative work. She has now released 7 issues of Paperfox, ranging from fantasy themes to feminism themes. Bethany manages a team of creative people to produce Paperfox, while also managing the company’s social media channels, designing the magazine and accomponying website, and interviewing authors for features. While working at Paperfox, she’s interviewed many writers and influencers from Lauren Cassidy of Instagram’s Fiction Tea, to Kiran Millwood-Hargrave (author of The Girl of Ink and Stars) and Andy Weir (author of The Martian). Each have been extremely influencial on Bethany, which is why she particularly enjoys the interviewing aspect of her role and considers interviews to be her strongest journalistic skill. She aims to create a comfortable setting for her interviewees, and intends for all her interviews to come across as colloquial conversations, both to the audience, and to the interviewee.
In 2016, Bethany decided to express her thoughts regarding her domestic abuse story and the way she was treated by the police during the case through her blog, and the article went viral. Following over 14,000 shares and reads, Bethany was contacted by hundreds of women around the world who’d unfortunately had a similar experience. Bethany maintained online friendships with these women and helped them where she could. The attention surrounding the blog post lead her to become a Women’s Voices contributor for The Huffington Post. She became more actively involved with fighting against domestic abuse when she was approached by Refuge, the women’s charity, about working with them. Bethany soon volunteered to work with Refuge journalistically. In February 2017, she was approached by Avon, the cosmetics brand, about teaming up with both them and Refuge to speak as a panelist about her experience with domestic abuse and what young girls can do to reach out for help, alongside MP Jess Phillips, journalist Emma Barnett, the CEOs of Avon and Refuge, and many more inspirational women. Bethany’s story was covered by Channel 5 Live, Avon, Refuge, IB Times, Reuters, The Mail Online, and several radio stations across Britain.
Following this, Bethany wanted to amplify her feminism through her creative work, and co-founded the magazine JeTuNous with Laurén Du Bignon, and became Senior Editor of the publication. The magazine is primarily a fashion publication, but with feminism underlying all topics featured. JeTuNous features models considered to be outside of the ‘norm’ such as models with body hair, and pus size models. The magazine focuses on how different people use their feminism, and how they express it through their personal style and day-to-day lives. Bethany’ roles for JeTuNous include writing articles for the magazine, editing submissions, conducting interviews, and supervising the design of the magazine. It’s first issue will be released in June 2017.
During her second year at university, Bethany decided to launch a podcast (combining her love for both literature and interviews), Beth’s Bookshelf, which is hosted through her blog and iTunes. The podcast works as a collection of conversations with creative writers, about creative processes and topics related to the specific guests for each episode. For instance, when interviewing L.E Delano, they discussed the topic of mental health in literature and the development of fantasy novels. She’s interviewed writers such as Michael Grant, Ava Dellaira, and Erin Summerill on the podcast, and eventually formed a partnership with Egmont Publishing Group through it.
Beth is a social butterfly, a self-confessed Pinterest & cardigan addict.
A also fond of dogs, sci-fi films, and fantasy books.
Puts mayonnaise on everything.
Originally from: West Midlands, England
Currently living in: Surrey, South East, England
Dreams to visit: Canada, San Francisco, Stockholm, Sweden, and Iceland. I would also like to return to Germany.
Favourite food: Tai & Mexican food (but not together)
Favourite films: Harry Potter (COS), Stardust, Gremlins, The Lost Boys and Super 8.
Favourite Music: Meatloaf, Muse Alt-J, RHCP, Cage the Elephant, Guns n Roses, Arctic Monkeys, Prince, Fleetwood Mac, Lady Gaga, Florence and the Machine, and Metallica, are some favourites (in no particular order). There are some playlists floating around on the blog and there’s usually one in the footer too, if you’re interested!
Favourite books: Not That Kind of Girl by Lena Dunham / His Dark Materials by Phillip Pullman
Are you a full time blogger?
I’m not technically “full time” as I’m also an editor and student, but I’m always interested in hearing about opportunities and I’m flexible with when I can work. I publish three new blog posts per week (sometimes more).
What sort of things do you write about?
Journalistically – Books. Films. Style. Art. Feminism. Culture. I’m also a creative writer, and I give poetry my best shot while working on short stories and long term projects (I’m currently in the process of writing a book of personal essays, and have the beginnings to a fantasy novel)
Can I invite you to my event?
I love going to events! But please have a read through my blog to make sure it relates to my content in some way. I’m unlikely to attend a gaming event or fitness event, for example. Examples of events I have been to are beauty events, Avon and Refuge’s event discussing their research findings on domestic abuse, and blogger hangouts.
Can I send you something? Will you write about it?
I accept products on a gifting basis in exchange for a review, but whether I write about it depends on if I like it! There’s nothing more important than my integrity as a blogger and I am always honest as my readers view me as a trusted source of information and inspiration. Please don’t just randomly send me products, drop me an email first with the subject line ‘Blog Collaboration/Opportunity to make sure it’s something I will enjoy, can produce content about and fits in with the theme of my blog! I am really honest on this blog and I don’t tend to write about everything I’m sent.