Friday, July 24, 2009

Am I opening a can of worms here?

As most are aware, mine is a book blog. I write reviews and book related stuff here, including book memes. In my side bars, I don't have any kind of gimmickry or display. I like to keep my blog simple, readable and explorable. Most important for me that it ought to load faster when one clicks on the link via blogroll, reader or anywhere else.

On my part, I too like visiting those blogs which don't have too much clutter and entice me with their book reviews and/or book memes. I also know which book blogs are balanced and which book blogs cater to my reading interests. There are those bloggers, whose reading recommendations I have followed religiously as I trust their judgement. Also I have read genres I otherwise wouldn't have if I had not read good reviews about those. Then there are those much hyped book blogs, which don't entice me to visit them although I do follow those on my google reader.

Nowadays I seldom take part in any book giveaway as most are for US/Canada. I don't really blame them as shipping costs are exorbitant. And in this time of recession, it does makes sense not going international. And even if the few which are international, the genres don't interest me. Until last year I used to take part in every giveaway irrespective of the book interested me or not. I learnt my lesson and now I am choosy. I do get a few review copies. Some I ask for and others, authors/publicist send me after contacting me. That suits me fine. I get lesser books but good ones at that, which are more to my liking.

I do get a lot of awards. Although I do go and acknowledge those to the giver, I seldom make a post here and pass it on. I know all of us book bloggers deserve all the awards there are out there. We work hard on our reading, on our reviews and on participating in memes too. Community building is great and mutual respect is of utmost important.

I truly cherish my blogger friends as they have rallied around me whenever I have needed their support, spoken or unspoken. Today I felt like saying all this on my blog and so I did. Let reading take precedence over anything else!

So what do you say to all this? I would really like to know your thoughts.


serendipity_viv said...

I don't think you are opening a can of worms, I think you are being open and honest. You keep it simple and I really enjoy reading about what you have read. I love the little community that exists on here and I have loved adding so many books to my TBR list

Anonymous said...

I got choosier too. It doesn't make sense to request a book you know you won't want! But it's nice to get book reviews you do want. You're at a disadvantage not being in U.S. or Canada so I'm glad you still get review copies at least.

tea said...

I very much enjoyed reading your blog. It gave a lot to think about. Hope you'll continue to write posts like this one.

deepteshpoetry said...

Nice wordplays.n ur ideas r as always awesomeDo chk d one out on my blog!Hope u hvn't forgotten me!I had 2 leave for a while due 2 academic reasons.

Deb Nance at Readerbuzz said...

I was worried, when I started blogging, that I would get caught up in it...How many people are commenting on my blog? Do I have many followers? Why am I not winning awards like A?

Like you, I try to set all these silly highschoolish ideas aside and focus on why I blog....I love to read and reflect on good books.

Serena said...

I really enjoy your blog and its simple look. I feel like mine is getting too cluttered and someday soon I will do something about it. Right now, I am overwhelmed.

I'm glad that you have found a way to manage your books, your online reading, etc. I need to take a lesson from you. :)

Unknown said...

I have to admit that my pet hate is give aways only open to the US/Canada. I wouldn't host a giveaway unless I could post internationally. If you can't afford to post internationnal have half the number of giveaways open to all - that way you won't wind me up!

The chances of an international person winning is quite small anyway, so you probably wouldn't have to post abroad anyway.

Thanks for letting me get that off my chest!

Unknown said...

I don't see any worms here either.

I read a variety of blogs with a variety of styles and a variety of substance. I think you have more in your sidebars than you think, though you do tend to stay away from pictures and videos. That's fine. You've pointed me towards many interesting books, which is what I look for in a blog.

On the other hand, I do post pictures and videos etc and I do like to see the same on other blogs. I really use my blog as my homepage, basically.

And if you ever see a giveaway on my site that you're interested in, please enter. I ship world wide.

ANovelMenagerie said...

I enjoy and read your blog. I agree... no worms... just an honest post.

Keep up the awesome blog!


ibeeeg said...

I think your post was well put.
I like the simplicity of your blog.
I like your blog - period. **smile**

Harvee said...

I really like how your blog is arranged, too. Some day I'll figure out how to have 3 columns and get my pages organized!

Staci said...

I read for the pure pleasure of it and for no other reason. I love to share my thoughts with other book lovers. I try to keep my blog very clean and fast. I have dial-up so I tend to stay away from pages that take forever to load. I really enjoy your blog and think you add a much needed voice to the blogger world. Continue to do your blog as you have been or however YOU like it. Remember, in the end, each one of us should be happy in our endeavors!!

Bookfool said...

Absolutely! The reading is what's important. I think I've learned some lessons and they've been slow in coming. Like you, I jumped on the giveaway and ARC bandwagon. Now, I've not only become more selective; I'm trying to completely give up accepting books that come with an obligation attached (and it's a slow process because I actually scheduled myself months in advance -- ridiculous). I love promoting authors I like, but I've begun to feel like I allowed my blog to be hijacked just a bit. My decision, my mistake. Much as I love helping authors, I just want to read what I've got on the stacks.

Good idea, keeping the blog simple. I probably ought to work on minimizing my photos.

Craig Hart said...

Well, I certainly hope you don't feel guilty about writing this post! I think it's good and you're obviously speaking from the heart. No harm in that.

Your blog is nice and simply done. I think it suits the layout. I've seen some blogs that look like the Las Vegas strip...all glitz. There's so much to look at, that you don't see anything. Your blog isn't like that at all. You do a good job.

Keep up the good work.

The Reading Momster said...

All what you have said is true and I am glad you came out with it :)

Beth F said...

I love reading your blog and you are very well focused. We all have our own tastes and we gravitate toward the blogs that interest us.

I don't think it is necessary to snag every review book and enter every giveaway to be a good blogger or to be a good friend in the community.

YOu are doing great! This is supposed to be enjoyable, not a contest.

Anonymous said...

There are a variety of different blogs for a variety of different readers. The variety in substance and style is a good thing. I love your blog and I think it's great that you post about what's on your mind.

Anonymous said...

I had to leave this comment attached to this post :-).

I’m stopping by to say I’ve got something for you at I'm Booking It!

No need to do anything with it, just letting you know I appreciate your blog and your comments on mine.

Anonymous said...

I agree with you. I don't really like blogs that take up more than a minute to load as my work computer is crap. I don't understand why some have to use so many graphics and flash stuff it just bogs your site down and makes it horrible to scroll through, especially on a slow computer.

I prefer the minimalist clean approach.

Anna said...

I like a simple approach, too. I have a few buttons in my sidebar, but that's about it. I appreciate your honesty, and I really enjoy your blog.

Diary of an Eccentric

Natalie W said...

Hello, I came across your site via the Teaser Tuesday post. I am enjoying your blog! I saw this post and wanted to say that I agree with everything you've said. I too started entering all the giveaways, reading and commenting on as many blogs as I could, giving awards, etc. but now being so busy I don't have time for all that and I felt stressed. Now I feel like I'll just do what I can , appreciate whoever does stop by and just relax!!! :)
Great site you have, I'll be back for sure ,

Aarti said...

I actually think it's rude for people to go and try to get books they aren't interested in, just because they're free. That's not very nice to the author or the publisher. When I host a giveaway, I make sure the book being given away interests ME first, and also most of the people who frequent my blog. Additionally, I usually set them up with a question to answer so that someone has to actually read the post and can't just leave an entry with no thought.

I also feel very strongly against "advertising" for an author on my blog, so I'm leery about interviews and giveaways in general.

I agree with you on the awards- I am honored to get them, but I don't like passing them on as I don't like leaving people out.

I also don't follow most blogs with huge amounts of subscribers as they tend to focus on author interviews/giveaways/etc., and I tend not to read a lot of the books reviewed (when reviews are written).

So really- I'm with you on all things! Even though you posted this a long time ago, I hope my comment is not too late.

Birdy said...

Totally agree! I just stumbled upon your blog and am glad! :) Bookmarked it so will keep visiting :)

Lisa said...

nah, not opening a can of worms. I've did the request all the books available and ended up getting the books I don't like, and drooled at the books available for only US/Canada. I do agree they are quite bias sometimes :(