For What It's Worth

Monday, January 2, 2012

Book Blogger Confessions (#1)

Welcome to the very first Book Blogger Confessions, a meme co-hosted with Tiger from All-Consuming Books on the 1st and 3rd Monday of every month, to discuss some of the frustrations that are unique to book bloggers.

You can read the introductory post here.

If you want to participate just grab our button and include it in your post with a link to either Tiger's All Consuming Books or For What It's Worth. We will be providing a linky at the end of our posts so people can "hop" to see all the participants answers.

If you don't want to post you can still comment!! All opinions are welcome.

Guidelines: Do not criticize other bloggers or authors in your post or in the comments! This meme is to help each other not knock each other down. It's YOUR blog. Blog how you want to!
Let's get to it! The first topic is:

Q. How has the "job" of book blogging changed your reading habits? Both pro and con. 

I look at reading more critically than I used to. Before blogging, if I didn't like a book I just tossed it aside and forgot about it. Now I have to articulate why I didn't like it. That makes me live in the book longer and sadly makes me dislike it (and sometimes reading) even more.

Same thing goes if I love a book. In fact the "OMG this book is amazing" are sometimes the hardest reviews for me to write. 

When I'm fully absorbed in a world with characters I love, the last thing I want to do is stop to jot down notes but with blogging you have to. 

I'm often torn when I love a book - sometimes I just want to keep it for myself and not over analyze it. It takes away from what I originally saw as perfection. On the other hand I want everyone to know how wonderful it is so they will go buy it right this second!

Picking apart a book isn't always fun whether you liked it or not. It gets time consuming and makes reading feel less spontaneous - like something you have to schedule. I may be able to read a book in one day but when I have to stop to take notes then spend a few hours on a review (don't even get me started on the blogger formatting issues) it can take away my reading high.

Deadlines. This is probably the most stressful thing about blogging for me.

If you are part of the Amazon Vine program, you have about 2 weeks to read and review that book before the next newsletter comes out, publishers want their books reviewed within a few weeks of release, Netgalley's e-ARC's often expire after a certain date. I read fast, so that's not the problem. However, I don't always want to read that book at that moment but I have to. 

I often wonder if that changes my response to a book. If I read it at a different time, when I was in a different reading mood and this wasn't my 5th dystopian, alien, love triangle, time travel, circus book in a row would I have liked it better??

I've really lightened up on the self imposed deadline pressure the past few months. I don't request many books for review and it's in my review policy that it may be several months before I can read a book for review. I have found most authors to be very receptive to that. After all they are readers too! They understand TBR piles.

Blogging about reading is sometimes more time consuming than the actual reading part which can get very frustrating but overall I think reviewing has deepened my appreciation for writers and the art of writing. I know I couldn't do it!

While I may not enjoy every book I read I can now see the love and dedication that went into the process of writing of that book. I don't think I ever really noticed that before I started reviewing and blogging. 

By far the biggest thing that has changed is the number of books and authors I have found out about through other bloggers. This is great for obvious reasons. I find even more great books/new authors but it can make it seem like you will NEVER EVER EVER read all the books you want to. It stresses me out sometimes but it's a trade off I'm willing to live with.

Next Book Blogger Confessions is scheduled for January 16th: Have you ever had reading/blogging slumps? How do you work through them or work around them?

Join in the meme and link your post up below or leave a comment!
Feel free to suggest future topics you want to see discussed.


  1. I feel pretty much EVERY point that you've made in this post, Karen! As much as I love blogging, sometimes I just want to read a fun book and leave it at that, without having to analyze it or do anything but enjoy it. I usually end up reviewing them all anyways. Eventually. I find that giving myself some time to think (usually a few days) after reading the book makes writing the review easier and less like homework (which, I have to admit, it does feel like at times).

  2. I feel pretty much the same way you do. I hate that I can't just enjoy a book anymore without thinking critically, but it's worth it because blogging has taught me so much about literature and let me find out about so many great books!

    I'm just the opposite of Natalie, though. It helps me to write my review immediately after finishing the book. If I don't do it immediately, I know I'll never get around to doing it.

    Thanks for hosting this awesome meme - I love the idea!

  3. I usually write my reviews immediately. The exception to this is if I finish a book at 5 a.m., then I tend to sleep on it. It can definitely be annoying to have someone ask me half way through a book, "So how many stars is that one?". That really isn't the point. How I felt about the characters, the plot, etc. is way more important. And how I felt as a person when I closed it is even more important still.

  4. Yes, taking down notes is a bit of a bummer for me as well. It takes away the special moment because I have to stop and write things down. Also, I definitely agree with the "best books" being the most hard to review. I always end up gushing about it even if deserves a more rightful review.

  5. Great topic :) Blogging has sure changed a lot for me, the only thing that has not changed though is how I look at books. I fear if I looked critically at them and started to analyse then i would quit blogging. Too much work

  6. @Natalie - I take notes while I'm reading but I sometimes wait to write my reviews too. I need to just enjoy a book once in a while lol

    @Blodeuedd Please send some of that feeling my way. I need to just read for pleasure again. That's my blogging resolution for the year!

    Thank you everyone for participating!!!

  7. Your right deadlines can get stressfull especially when you don't feel like reading the book or want to read something else. I've also started to accept books I'm only sure I'll read and I'll let authors know that it might take a few months for the review to be posted.

    These memes are a great idea, looking forward to doing more! :)

  8. I agree, deadlines stress me the f out. You get all these books and think "Well, these don't come out for 3 months. I'm fine!". Then 3 months pass, and you're freaking out maaaan. I haven't read this! I need to review this! AHHHH!!!



  9. I completely agree on almost point. For me, writing a review for a book I loved or disliked is easier than the books that are just average. I don't know what to say.
    Deadlines definitely make me crazy. I put a book off thinking I've got months to read it, then the week it comes out, I'm freaking out!
    I'm enjoying all the fellow blogger insights.

  10. OMG I agree with all of these things posted about deadlines and taking notes. I find I have to write the review for the book while still pondering it. There are times I don't take notes or review all the books I read.

    I agree that I have found some great authors too, and thats good things too.

  11. Yes, I feel the same, especially that part about reading as fast as you can to meet a deadline. So stressful.

    And I have the hardest time writing reviews for OMG books. I hate that it's easy for me to rant about books I didn't like. I try to be conscious of what I'm saying about it, but sometimes I'm too pissed that the book wasted my time. LOL

  12. The deadlines are always a frustrating thing. I often feel like I don't want to read that book anymore just because I feel like I have to. I'm a very mood type reader so if I'm not in the right mood for a certain book I highly believe I won't enjoy it as much as I could.

  13. This is an amazing meme, thanks so much for starting it! I also really love that you are providing the next weeks question ahead of time to give us a chance to work on our answers! :)

    Bonnie @ Hands and Home

  14. This is a great discussion post. You've really articulated your opinion and thoughts very succinctly. I definitely agree with a lot of it, which is why I don't really request ARCs, etc.

  15. Oooh, cool new meme!! Hopefully I'll get a chance to participate soon :)

    "I'm often torn when I love a book - sometimes I just want to keep it for myself and not over analyze it."---Me too!!! Books I loved are so hard to write reviews for! Also this is sometimes why I don't review books that I read for me and not for blogging.

  16. I agree with a lot of your points. The one thing I really don't like are deadlines too. They freak and stress me out.

    I agree with your point about sometimes, blogging taking more time than actually reading. I feel like when I'm a good blogger, I'm a bad reader and vice versa.

    Great meme! I'm super excited to join and share my thoughts.

  17. I think I've said, but this a great meme! I mean we all have blogger problems and it'll probably help if everyone can vent a little. Also, we can point any people who request reviews to one of these posts rather than explaining ourselves countless times.

    It seems deadlines really do ruin blogging for so many. I can understand why they are necessary but- gah- they are often so stringent. I actually never write notes. It's something I think I should do and- if I'm struggling to read a book- it makes for an excuse that also helps productivity!

    I resigned myself to never reading all the books I'll like when I first walked into the bookstore fiction section, Googled other books when I got home and the page number was in the thousands.

  18. I love this meme! I almost forgot to link up today.

    I agree with what your saying about the reading response. If I have to read a book at a certain time but I'm not in the mood for it, I probably won't like it as much.

    Yay for a successful first day!

  19. I love the idea of this! I think maybe i'll try to participate next week! I agree with you sometimes i feel like i'll love a book but then when i start reading with a deadline im just rushing through which makes the book lose things for me! Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment on my Busting the newbie bloggers post. It's cool that you met a lot of your friends through blogging i'm hoping that i can do that to!