Wednesday, September 12, 2012

BBAW: What Book Blogging Means to Me



I wish I had a better memory of when that spark of passion for reading first was lit. I have long said it began before I was born. My father was an avid reader and collector of books. There wasn’t a room in our house growing up that didn’t have either books on shelves or stacked on a table somewhere. My mom, also a reader, contributed to that too. I came to being a reader naturally, my love for books and stories never ending. It has colored every aspect of my life, including bringing my husband into my life all those 21 years ago.

On an average Wednesday, around lunch time, you will find me hidden away in a private office, munching on my sandwich, reading. At least, that’s where you will find my body. My mind is miles away—sometimes worlds away--lost in a book. Reading is one of those activities that can fit just about any of my moods. I read to learn, to be inspired, to grow, and to experience places and events I might never know otherwise. I read to escape, to feel, and to be entertained.

Reading is such a private affair—it’s just the book and the reader. We each come away from the books we read having very individual experiences. Still, as personal as that journey is to me, I can’t help but want to share it with others—and find out what others have experienced while reading as well.

Besides reading, I enjoy writing. I do not put the effort I used to in my writing, and for that I am sad. Blogging has given me an outlet for writing, at least in part. I’ve long kept a journal of the books I read, more to help jog my memory than anything else. The desire to share the reading experience with others made blogging seem like the obvious next step.

When I began book blogging six years ago, I had no idea just how much of a community there was out there. Suddenly I found myself among likeminded people—people with a passion for books and writing—for talking about those books and other bookish tidbits. While we share in our love for books, our experiences with those books can vary widely. It gives me the chance to hear a different perspective, think a little differently, and branch out to try something new. I felt—then and now--instantly at home. And to me, that’s what book blogging is about: feeling at home amongst friends, sharing opinions and stories, and, most importantly, enjoying good books.

What does book blogging mean to you?


A special thanks to the hosts of BBAW who worked hard to pull this week together and make it fun for everyone. 

© 2012, Wendy Runyon of Musings of a Bookish Kitty. All Rights Reserved. If you're reading this on a site other than Musings of a Bookish Kitty or Wendy's feed, be aware that this post has been stolen and is used without permission.

56 comments:

  1. Great post, Wendy!

    Book blogging is no longer an online journal to me but a place where I can share opinions (vent and/or rave, hehe) with fellow book bloggers.

    Finally, I want to say this: Thanks so much for being my blogging buddy!! :-)

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    1. Melody - Thank you! I love being able to talk with other readers about books just the way you describe. It makes the reading experience all the more meaningful, I think. :-)

      And thank you too for being my blogging buddy! I am so glad to have you as my friend.

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  2. When I started my blog I didn't know about book blogs, but quickly caught on. I'm glad I did - it's so nice to know so many other avid readers!

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    1. Kathy - I agree! Who would have thought there'd be so many other book crazy people out there? I'm glad I found you all. :-)

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  3. I love all the many different views and opinions in the book blog world too - it helps me expand my visions. I, too, wonder when my love of reading began...must have been in my blood :)

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    1. Melissa - I agree! Sometimes I come away from a discussion about a book I've read with an entirely new perspective--one I didn't think about on my own. I truly believe book blogging has helped improve my reading.

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  4. Very, very nice post...passionate and heartfelt.

    Thanks for stopping by my blog.

    Have a fun day.


    Elizabeth
    Silver's Reviews
    http://silversolara.blogspot.com/2012/09/book-blogger-appreciation-week-day-3.html

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    1. Thank you, Elizabeth! It's easy to write about something I'm so passionate about. Sometimes. LOL

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  5. I like how you talked about reading being so private yet we want share our personal experiences with the books we read. That is so true. I love how we could all read the same book and have different opinions on it and blogging gives a place to share those thoughts!

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    1. Alli - Isn't it interesting how differently we can experience the same book? I love how books can affect us that way.

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  6. I imagine (and hope) that this is how my child will feel. That there was never a surface or a moment in his childhood not filled with books. :D

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    1. Reading Angel - I hope my daughter will feel similarly as well. We're certainly well on our way. LOL

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  7. It is funny to think about how private reading is and how social blogging is. It strikes a nice balance. I feel totally blessed by all the wonderful people I have met, all over the world, through blogging.

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    1. Sandy - I think so too. There's something to be said for the combination of something so intimate being shared. Reading really lends itself to that, I think. And like you, I also feel blessed to know such great people through blogging--including you. :-)

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  8. Excellent post. Blogging really is a way to make a private experience public.

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    1. Liviania - Thank you! I am glad we are able to share our love for reading with each other.

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  9. Thank you so much for stopping by! I'd never really thought about how much of myself I'm sharing when I share my experience with a book. That is an excellent and extremely enlightening point.

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    1. Teresa - I don't think we can help it really. So much of who we are goes into what we are reading.

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  10. Book blogging has made my reading more intense and I love to answer memes too!

    BBAW: Meaning of Book Blogging

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    1. Gautami - Yes, it book blogging has definitely done that for me too. I enjoy answering memes as well. They help us get to know each other better. :-)

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  11. Nice post! I also love to hear different perspectives from other people and to get new ideas. And the community spirit is wonderful.

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    1. Judith - Thank you! Book blogging has been such a good source of self-reflection as well as expanding my horizons.

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  12. Suddenly I found myself among likeminded people—people with a passion for books and writing—for talking about those books and other bookish tidbits.

    I think this is the part that rings so true for me at this point in my experience. I love being surrounded by other book lovers!

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    1. Carina - So do I! It's such a wonderful feeling. Re-affirming, really.

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  13. That's what blogging means to me as well; sharing books with friends who may be miles away, or right in your town, and realizing that others share your passions and want to hear your opinions, just as you want to hear theirs. Great post today!

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  14. Wow, six years... great job.

    I, on the other hand, think reading could and should be a group affair. Somehow we got away from that (it used to be social about 150 - 200 years ago).

    http://www.ManOfLaBook.com

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    1. Zohar - Thank you! Book blogging is definitely one avenue for making reading a group affair. There's much to be said for the social aspect of reading. :-)

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  15. Beautifully written, Wendy - I feel much the same way.

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  16. Thanks for sharing what blogging means to you! I was just thinking the other day that I should save my office lunchtimes for reading, instead of socializing with coworkers who I'll see all day anyway. *grin*

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    1. Cecelia - If I didn't sneak away to read during lunch, my coworkers would seek me out to talk about work. LOL I need the break or I'd go crazy.

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  17. So beautifully put Wendy - it is such a joy to be able to share your passion with others and the book blogging community is so supportive and inclusive.

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    1. Jo - Thank you! I have found it be so, most definitely. :-)

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  18. What a wonderful post! I think I got my love of reading from my father too! And lunchtime at work always means reading time for me. So glad to meet fellow book lovers, and really love your blog header!

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    1. Terri (Alexia) - Thanks! There's something to be said for reading fathers. :-) I always look forward to my lunch time and my book!

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  19. I do remember exactly when I came to love reading...my first grade teacher was reading Little House on the Prairie to us...I was hooked. Then came the tme I tried to keep my second grade teacher's copy of Charlotte's Web for what seemed like forever to her. I begged her to let me show her how much I loved that book. I then proceeded to recite verbatim the first two chapters....she gave me the book!! Blogging means being able to share the joys and the pits of reading with others who get you! My husband doesn't get the "reading Staci." He doesn't understand why I might pine for a book to be released and then wait over a year to read it simply because I couldn't stand the thought of my favorite characters' stories being done. But I could tell that same story to my book friends and they would probably have a similar story of their own!!

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    1. Staci - I think it's great you can pinpoint when your love of reading was first sparked.

      I do know what you mean about being able to share in the pleasures of reading with others who share your passion. Who understands better why reading one more chapter often means reading many more--or why it's best not to interrupt us when we are close to finishing (although it inevitably happens)?

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  20. Question...how long has book blogging been around?

    I see you have been blogging since 2006..all those years I missed it. I didn't start until 2010.


    Elizabeth
    Silver's Reviews
    http://silversolara.blogspot.com

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    1. Elizabeth - I'm not sure how long book blogging has been around. Much longer than I've been blogging, I'm sure!

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  21. That's fantastic that you've been doing this for 6 years. It shows how timeless talking about books can be.

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    1. Allison - I never grow tired of talking about books. :-)

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  22. Loved your post.. And thanks to e-books, my lunch hours are spent in reading too with a sandwich for company.. I am sure with the support of this wonderful community,I will stick around with my blog this time..

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    1. Lady in Read - Thank you! Sometimes my lunch time reading is the only reading I get during the day. :-) I do hope you'll continue blogging for along while. It's a great outlet for just about everything.

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  23. Thanks for sharing! Books and sandwiches definitely make my day.

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    1. Cat Overlord - Nothing beats books and sandwiches. :-)

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  24. I'm so jealous of that office you found! I do enjoy being out in my car and getting the fresh air while it's nice but when it cools off, I'm looking for an office like you found! I do the same thing - by the time my lunch hour is over, it takes me a while to bring myself back into the real world. It's great, isn't it?!

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    1. Lisa - I am lucky to work in an office where half of the staff work evenings and nights, so finding an empty office is usually pretty easy. That wasn't always the case. I used to read in my car, like you. Only summers it was impossible.

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  25. I am such in awe of what book blogging means to me, that I don't even know or want to describe it. I am in awe of the friendships I have made.

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    1. Care - I understand that. It can be hard to put into words. The friendships are definitely a big part of why I continue to blog, even when I have doubts about continuing.

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  26. I have approached book blogging in much the same way- first it was just a way to record my thought on books and then I discovered the wonderful community. I enjoy writing too and it's been nice to have an small outlet for that in writing about books. And so nice to find people online to share something I love with- not many of those around me are really readers.

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    1. Jeane - That's true for me too. I only recently came to an office where people actually like to read in their downtime--although even then it's not quite to the degree that I take it. I value the community I've found here via blogs.

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  27. Totally agree about the concept of "reading being a private affair." Also want to congratulate you on blogging for lo these many years.

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    1. Vikk - Thank you! It doesn't feel like it's been all that long. :-)

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  28. I love your definition of blogging; I feel so much the same! I love that blogging gives me an outlet for sharing reading with everyone else. It's private, but shared at the same time. Wonderful post, Wendy. :)

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    1. Meghan - Thanks! It's funny too how much it's affected my non-online life, how much confident I am to talk about books and reading to just about anyone.

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