I am a book dragon. (Yes, I am. Do not disagree.) However (like a lot of things in my life), there are certain requirements I have with regards to such. Some of these are established guidelines, others are fairly new (since I started blogging and learned the error of my ways).
I don’t do audiobooks:
- There are too many factors working against me when it comes to audio. I’d like to see certain words/names/places that may be spelled differently than we pronounce them. What if I miss something important because at the moment the CD announces, “And the murderer is…!”, my kid destroys the living room? How about those really, really dull readers that bring absolutely nothing but irritation to trying to understand the story?
- I often don’t have time to sit and listen to a whole CD of anything, but I can arrange an hour here and there with a physical book.
- I don’t have an Ipod or other similar device that I could take with me.
- These days I don’t take the bus or train, nor do I spend a lot of time waiting alone (meaning without children or spouse) in offices. So when would I actually listen?
- My only exception is if it’s an audiobook of a novel I’ve already read, and therefore I know I won’t miss anything major. Also, some authors do read their own works (Neil Gaiman, for example), and I really prefer that. You don’t lose the true storytelling voice of the author that way.
I don’t do e-books:
- Most importantly, I don’t own a Kindle or similar device that would allow me to download e-books. However, could I acquire one if I really, really wanted to? Yes, I’d find a way. But I am simply not a big fan of non-physical books. I LOVE physical books — the smell, the feel, the photographs not glaring because I can’t hold it to the right angle of light.
- The cost difference between electronic and paper copy book honestly does not bother me.
- When you hold a printed publication in your hands, there’s something about it that reminds me real people poured their heart and soul into it. Electronic transmissions run the risk of becoming neutral, even less human. (Just trust me on this.)
I no longer do tags or challenges:
- After doing both last year — hey, “all” the other bloggers were — and realizing I just do NOT have 6 hours to devote to completing these types of posts, I am officially swearing off. I’m a mother; we currently have one computer in our house; I’m a writer; there are always errands and appointments and chores and cool new novels to read. Translation — time is hardly on my side.
- The tags especially get repetitive. I enjoy reading a variety of ideas and thoughts in others’ posts, and if we’re all covering the same questions…
- Do I still love the bloggers that have tagged me in the past? Oh, yes, of course. But most of them also are beginning to feel that keeping on top of the “tag mountain” continuing to form itself in their drafts section is just rotten raspberries. So I highly doubt they’ll hold it against me.
I won’t be attempting my own challenge or making such requests of others:
- People who blog also have real lives away from their computers and mobile phones. People are trying to blog while raising families/working outside of the home/complete novels/adopt pets/clean the oven/go shopping for more books. So we all just don’t have the time to do “extras.”
- When I went looking for ARC readers for my own series, I made it a completely volunteer, you-ultimately-decide basis. I have some great ARC-ers, and am excited for their upcoming experience. But I’m also not going to hound them about doing their reviews for my book. As long as it’s reasonable (“what, it’s 2018 and you haven’t reviewed my first release yet?!”), then I don’t mind at all if the post isn’t up within a week. I don’t want to be “that kind” of author.
The major thing to remember is that reading is a magical experience, and it needs to be more about that joy of discovering the characters, peeling back the layers of the story, and getting sucked into a fictional world of great imagination — much more than, “I wrote this review and, look, it got 1,742 views.”
As I’m reading others’ end-of-year posts, I get the idea this isn’t just me. So, let’s go back to what we love about books, what drew us to them in the first place, fellow dragons.