Blogging – one year on

I am about to celebrate (if that’s the right word) the first anniversary of my blog. So I think that allows me a moment to reflect on what I’ve learnt during the year.

I’ve always been an avid reader and my father was instrumental in encouraging me to read a lot of the same fiction he enjoyed, so after the early years of Blyton, Ransome and Nesbit I was reading McBain, Chandler and Tey! I’ve never lost my love of a good “whodunnit” and the daily commute provides a regular opportunity to read. But blogging has given me a slightly different perspective. I don’t think that in the past I have given much consideration to what made a good book (or not) and what aspects I like or don’t like in what I read. In the past it would be finish one book and move onto the next, but the committment to writing a review means I give a lot more thought to what I’m reading. I didn’t study English Lit very far at school – I actually hated all that analysing and reading meaning into things, so perhaps I’m a latecomer to what others take for granted. What I hadn’t realised before was that there were so many varied ways of actually telling the story and in a genre like crime fiction this can have a real impact on the reader’s experience. I’ve developed more of an appreciation for writers and how they craft their story.  

And it’s not just that I’ve found out more what I read, I’ve also learnt:

  • that if you like an author there’s a fair chance you could get to meet them
  • that “bookish” people aren’t “bookish” at all – you only have to look on Twitter, blog comments, or go to an event at Goldsboro books!
  • that there are a huge number of awards for books
  • that for every person who agrees with you about a book there’s another one who thinks the complete opposite

and finally

  • that I’m never going to have time to read all the books I would like!

I’d be interested to know what others feel they’ve learnt from blogging.

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10 comments

  1. I think you’ve pretty much said it all!

    I’ve “met” some wonderful people through blogging and have even got to go to some author/book events since I’ve been book blogging (I blogged for years before I started book blogging though).

    1. Thanks Nikki-Ann
      You’re right – there are a great group of bloggers/tweeters, especially in crime fiction & some who have been very generous with their time & comments.

  2. I recently began blogging again, and realised how much editing I need to do before I can post anything! At first I thought it was because I was a fine stylist/perfectionist etc., but increasingly I think it’s because I’m shit at writing. That said, I clearly made a bad career choice some time ago…

    1. Oh dear! Perhaps blogging is too much like the day job? I get to a point where I just push the “publish” button even though I know I could do better – but then people won’t be judging what I do to pay the bills by what I write in my blog 🙂

  3. The longer it goes on and the more you intereact with others of like mind, you’ll be surprised how your own writing develops, I suspect. One of the great freedoms of having your own blog – vs the old school scenario you mention – is that you are free to express yourself without the need for marks and competition. It’s a great place for learning where you have an open mind and to indulge in your passions.

    That said, I actually feel sorry for those picked up so quickly by publishers that they are endowed with free books; are afraid to be totally honest in their ‘reviews’; always produce gushing endorements; and are seen by intelligent readers as a mere free marketing tool for publishers.

    I honestly don’t think you fall into that latter camp at all. And I look forward to following more of your blogging in the future.

    1. Thanks for the kind words. I hope that my writing / blogging style will develop as it becomes (hopefully) easier to articulate my thoughts on what I’ve read.
      As my personal blog I want my reviews to be honest, but that has to be balanced with the responsibility that comes with saying anything in a public forum. I hope that someone reading my blog can judge for themselves whether or not they might like to try something I’ve read.

  4. I have only been blogging for four months but I couldn’t agree with you more. It is great fun and there is a great community out there to talk about books.

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