Thursday, September 15, 2011

BBAW #4: Readers & Reading- How Blogging Has Changed What I Read

Today's topic for Book Blogger Appreciation Week is Readers. BBAW asks,
Has book blogging changed the way you read? Have you discovered books you never would have apart from book blogging? How has book blogging affected your book acquisition habits? Have you made new connections with other readers because of book blogging?
Book blogging has definitely changed the way I read! Right from the start I made an effort to read more new releases and current books, because I thought that would give me something to offer- a reason for people to stop by. I mix that up with older books and books that dovetail with my personal interests; these days I'm trying to swing it back towards the latter but I think I can show my personal taste through which recent books I choose. Recently I started tagging my reviews by publication year so a visitor to my blog can see not only that I read lots of new books but which ones I pick.

I have discovered lots of books that I probably never would have noticed and have found myself encouraged to go deeper in areas that I'm already interested in. The challenges I'm doing, especially the Complete Booker Challenge and the Europa Challenge, have helped me dive into those books and I've made it a project to eventually read all of the Booker Prize winners. Having the support of the challenge group has made a big difference in both cases. Frances's Art of the Novella Challenge encouraged me to explore more of those books that had already caught my eye and introduced me to the wonderful publisher Melville House. And getting to know bloggers in different genres, especially science fiction, has encouraged me to be more open-minded about stepping outside my lit fic home turf.

One of the best things about blogging, as I've said ad nauseam, is the friends I've made. I can go to practically any major city in the US have at least one friend to meet up with if I want to, and I've met lots of bloggers who either have traveled to or already live in my local area, including folks in my own neighborhood. I love talking to fellow readers about books and I've found having a blog is a great gateway to a lot of awesome conversations with smart people. Blogging has strengthened old friendships and helped me make lots of new ones, too.

15 comments:

Luise in Cambridge said...

Hope you don't regret this loyal reader when she reminds you that it's really "ad nauseam" (rather than "ad nauseum"). It's easy to have typos in blogs; yours are remarkably clean, as a rule.

Nana Fredua-Agyeman said...

Challenges help. Most of the books I have read, especially the non-African books, have all been suggestions I picked up from book bloggers.

bermudaonion said...

I think I've always read quite a few new releases, but have discovered so many more books and authors since I started blogging.

gautami tripathy said...

I love Crime Fiction and get to know about new novels/authors/setting from the book blogs all the time.

Sandy Nawrot said...

Blogging has not only changed my reading, it has changed my LIFE. I was kind of a one-song Sally before blogging and now I read everything. But it is this friend-in-every-port thing that continually blows my mind. My husband just shakes his head in amazement.

Julie @ Read Handed said...

I used to almost never read new releases and I read quite a few now. I think that is a combination though of blogging and getting free ARCs at the ALA conference each summer. I've gone two years in a row, the first time before I started blogging. I tend to read what's available, and since my shelves are full of new releases, that's what I've been reading. If I ever stop going to ALA, I'll probably shift back into my old tricks of reading whatever looks interesting at the library, whether it's new or not. Thanks for sharing your thoughts!

Kathleen said...

I've definitely read more fiction since becoming a blogger. I used to read non-fiction almost exclusively. I love how the book blogging world has opened my reading horizons and the online friends and fellow book lovers is a big bonus too!

Zibilee said...

My tastes have also changed since I have started blogging, and even though I still tend to read the newer books, I also read genres that before were unheard of to me. I think I read more short stories than ever before as one example, but really, my reading has changed dramatically. I also agree with the awesomeness of having someone in your community to hang out with in every city that you visit, aside from those bloggers who live right in your neighborhood. It's just a wonderful thing!

Creations by Laurel-Rain Snow said...

I've enjoyed reading more books outside my usual genre...and finding out about books before they're released, which enhances that anticipatory glee.

Thanks for sharing....

Here's MY BBAW POST and
MY WEBSITE

Erin said...

I've definitely felt like I need to read newer books. What I'm starting to realize, though, is that there are so many bloggers already covering the hot new releases that I don't have to read them ASAP and add my voice to the clamor (unless, of course, I want to!). I'm also discovering there are a lot of bloggers who don't focus on just the newest books, so I feel less "different" for reading an older book now and again.

One thing I'd like to work on through the blogging community is exploring more of the prizes and publishers, which I know you and a couple of other bloggers excel at. I'm working on clearing my review schedule a bit so I'll have more time to explore some of those a bit more. That's something I'd never have even considered doing until I started blogging!

Kailana said...

All the friendships I have made through blogging is probably my favourite thing, too!

Alexia561 said...

One of the things I love most is discovering new authors and titles! Blogging has opened me up to so many different genres that I probably wouldn't have tried on my own. Enjoy wandering outside my comfort zone every now and again!

Anastasia said...

One of the nicest things about moving to California is that I know at least three bloggers who live there already-- so it's a bit less scary than otherwise!

- Anastasia @ Birdbrain(ed) Book Blog

Anna said...

It's amazing how many friendships are forged among bloggers and wonderful when you can meet them in person!

Amy said...

I love being able to meet up with blogging friends all over, it's so exciting and makes travel that much more fun!