For What It's Worth


Friday, May 20, 2022

Tell Me Something Tuesday: How has your blog changed over time? (AKA: Where Karen gives a long-ass answer to a simple question)

Tell Me Something Tuesday is a weekly discussion post where bloggers discuss a wide range of topics from books and blogging to life in general. 

It is co-hosted by (Linda from Book Girl of Mur-y-Castell, Roberta from Offbeat YA, Jen from That’s What I’m Talking About, Berl's from Because Reading is Better than Real Life  and me) 

Join in by answering this weeks question in the comments or on your own blog.

If you would like to join TMST and receive periodic emails of upcoming topics, please fill out this GOOGLE FORM. TMST is a laid back meme – join in or opt out depending on your interest in topics or schedule.



Question: How long have you been blogging? And has your blog changed over time?

Answer: I started blogging on December 15, 2009. It was my dog, Indy's, birthday lol I didn't tell a living soul about it - even Kevin for months - and it was just a way or me to catalogue what I watched/listened to/and read - although I barely read back then. I mostly made lists of favorite songs, books, movies before realizing book reviews were a thing and shifted to books only.

I truly thought no one would see it and it appears, looking back, that it took until about March of 2010 for me to get my first regulars commenters  None of who are blogging anymore :-(

Those were the golden days of blogging. Everyone was happy, it was drama free and totally supportive. You could easily gain 40 new (google) followers per weekend. 

I hosted giveaways, author guest posts, cover reveals - joined many memes like Waiting on Wednesday, Teaser Tuesday, Follow Friday, posted two reviews per week. I even co-hosted my own weekly TMST-like feature called Book Blogger Confessions and a month long blogger celebration with guest posts and giveaways by and for bloggers. I held several book auctions to raise money for charity. I blogged seven days a week and I LOVED it. 

Then the competition and drama started sneaking in. I blame this mostly on arc's and book conferences. Where we first were so excited for each other to get books or be able to go to BEA etc - the jealousy over who was and was not getting arc's creeped in. The competitiveness over follower #'s (again to be eligible for those coveted arc's) led to a lot of *How to blog* posts, plagiarism and more.

I had taken on a lot of arc's and reviews - trying to say yes to every author and publisher.

The whole thing was draining of my time and mental energy. I hated reading and blogging.

All to say that my blog has gone through, many, many changes. In style and content as I tried to decide where I fit in (or if I did at all) to the changing landscape. 

After almost calling it quits a few years ago, I decided I loved the interaction too much to give up but I was DONE with the self imposed pressure of reading and blogging or doing it a certain way. I gave up the arc chase, scheduling and just blog when I want (hence this Tuesday post going up on a Friday lol), read what I want and blog about whatever interest me. 

One week might be all books, the next streaming shows I've watched, the next my dogs or nothing at all for a few weeks. And I am blissfully ok with that.

My blog design changes totally on whim - usually when I'm feeling bored with blogging and it gets me excited to come back. I think that's the one thing that surprises me. I change it SO often that I'm surprised anyone knows that it's MY blog (although the most recent dog/cat design is a dead giveaway lol) and that it doesn't annoy people into leaving.

There have been a lot of bad turns but I think, other than the early days, this is my favorite time in blogging. Most of us have been through it all and are back to doing it for fun and our blogs reflect our personality - rather than trying to fit into a box. The followers are fewer but more genuine. 

So that's my two cents on that! 




Tuesday, May 10, 2022

Tell Me Something Tuesday: Comfort Reads

Tell Me Something Tuesday is a weekly discussion post where bloggers discuss a wide range of topics from books and blogging to life in general. 

It is co-hosted by (Linda from Book Girl of Mur-y-Castell, Roberta from Offbeat YA, Jen from That’s What I’m Talking About, Berl's from Because Reading is Better than Real Life  and me) 

Join in by answering this weeks question in the comments or on your own blog.

If you would like to join TMST and receive periodic emails of upcoming topics, please fill out this GOOGLE FORM. TMST is a laid back meme – join in or opt out depending on your interest in topics or schedule.



Question: What are the books/authors you pick up when you need a comfy read?

Answer: I don't really have any go-to, comforting reads these days. I haven't re-read a book in years and I tend to read new authors and just jump around genres now. 

Years ago, I would say all the PNR series. I would read and re-read the Sookie Stackhouse, BDB, Night Huntress, WVMP Radio vampire series several times per week!

Then it was romance. Any romance - YA, adult, series, stand-alones, anything. I just like the easiness and guaranteed HEA of the genre and they tend to be quick reads for me. 

Then I got bogged down by arc's, schedules reading slumps and I'm barely reading at all lol It's hard for me to find a book that makes me go ahhhhh. I'm kind of afraid to go back to some of the series I've loved int he past incase I now see all the flaws. 

So, I'll just say that I find any reading comforting right now. Whatever it is, because I'm back to reading for fun so it's whatever I am enjoying at this moment - no pressure - therefore making it a comfy read. 

Friday, May 6, 2022

It's A Wrap(up): Life, reading, watching...

LIFE

Hello everyone! It's still raining here. We're getting close to  1 1/2 - 2 inches a week. I know some of this is good going into fire season but good lord I'm done. DONE!

My weather guy keeps getting yelled at for the rain (humorously) and he tweeted this out, which made me laugh.


I still have my shoulder pain. It's been just over a month. It's not horrible, at least, and I was finally able to get hold of a live person and make a physical therapy appointment for next week. I am so looking forward to it. I'm kind of afraid to move too much  a) the area gets inflamed the pain has moved up my neck b) I'm afraid I'll do more damage and want to learn how to move my arm safely while it heals.

Kevin's boss just tested positive for COVID so we're on watch for that now. I'm vaccinated and boosted and I know the vast majority of cases are mild but I have a few pre-existing issues and also know a few people who died or have long COVID (who were healthy previously) from it so it's still nerve-wracking to me. You just don't know until it happens which one you are. 

WATCHING

We finished watching Moon Knight on Disney+. It was a strange show but we really liked it. It was a little different with Egyptian mythology and mental health issues.

I think I forgot mention that we watched Our Flag Means Death on HBO Max - starring & produced by Taika Waititi - a few months ago. It's such a fun, weird little pirate show. Part swashbuckler, part (queer) romcom and soooo good.

On Amazon Prime we're watching Outer Range starring Josh Brolin and I really can't tell you if I like it or not lol Kind of an alien/sci-fi, western, thriller vibe. Lots of secrets with weird twists. 

Val - a documentary about Val Kilmer using Kilmer's own footage he's accumulated throughout his life and career. Kilmer lost his voice to throat cancer and it's an interesting look at how he navigates nostalgic fame (we want our stars to stay beautiful) and chronic pain through determination, humor and art. This is told through Kilmer's lens, so a little biased but still raw and poignant. 




And I save the best for last... Heartstopper - Netflix CUTEST. SHOW. EVER. They broached difficult topics (bullying, coming out for example) but in such a sweet, heartwarming way. The acting is A+, the pacing superb and I was sooo sad that it ended. There better be a season 2! It's been several years since I read the first graphic novel but it seemed to follow it pretty closely and definitely captured the essence of Charlie, Nick and the story. 

The looks, the small touches, the friends...perfection. I wish all all romances, YA and adaptations were this good. The world sucks and this made me happy. 

READING




I don't know if I'll ever be able to read at my former pace but I'm reading so I guess that's good enough.

Kindle - Death by Dumpling (A Noodle Shop Mystery #1) by Vivien Chien ~ goodreads Cute cozy mystery so far. 

Hardcover - August of the Zombies (Zombie Problems #3) by K.G. Campbell ~ goodreads I'm just over 1/2 way and finally getting long awaited answers from the series. Fun so far.

Audiobook - Book Lovers by Emily Henry ~ goodreads I was super excited to see this on the Libro.fm ALC (audio arc) list for May. I'll be starting it the next time I run errands. 

What have you all been reading, watching, doing?