March 27, 2011

Lazy Sunday Thoughts: I Think You Have Me Confused With Someone Else

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Very lazy blogger here. Not even interested in doing more than reading. I won't say I woke up feeling like P. Diddy but the headache is a reminder that I'm not 20 anymore. Anyway....

Today I gave a listen to Nicole and Jen discussing fairy tales on What's Old is New. They have some interesting things to say and I think it's a topic that could be discussed for an eternity. It's a timely topic considering I just signed up for the Once Upon a Time Challenge. I added a few books to my TBR pile because of it.

Which brings me to my next topic... Over at The Story Siren, Kristi had a discussion with Author X which generated a number of comments. While it was an informative piece, there was something that started to bug me the more I read. There was a lot of focus on bloggers selling books. Hmm. Is that my job? Not that I'm aware. If I've convinced a few people to buy books because of something I posted then that's great! I'm happy for that author. However, that's not what I signed on for. I just want to talk about the books I read.

When I see people expecting bloggers to sell books, that bothers me. There's people who do that for a living and God love them for doing it. It can't be easy. They have to contact people like me to review their clients' books and I'm not always easy to please. They have to talk up those books in every venue whether or not they feel like it. They are the ones driving traffic to authors' websites and Amazon page. A 'free' book isn't enough to buy my love. I'm not a promotional site and an author will find s/he has to share the spotlight with a dead guy with a book in the public domain. That's just how I do it.

I'm a Reader first and always. I've had great relationships with authors. I love what they do even when I'm disappointed with their work. If this Author X has had bad experiences with bloggers than either s/he had the misfortune to attract the few bad apples or s/he is not looking at the blogger/author relationship in the right way. We're not billboards. We're Readers. Talk to us like you'd talk to any reader whether they have a blog or not.

I've bought plenty of books because of blogger recommendations. Just because I've received review copies doesn't mean I'm not still buying books.

Please read that post and the comments of other bloggers.

What else? Oh, I have a couple of book reviews coming up this week and my first Affinity Readalong post. And if you have an ipod touch or iphone here's a couple of time wasters I've been enjoying. Tiny Wings is just so cute even though I'm terrible at it. Angry Birds Rio is out now. Same Angry Birds different plot.

Happy Sunday!

14 comments :

  1. Amen!

    A free ARC is not enough to buy my PR/Marketing services. People read my blog and others to gather opinions on particular books. If I dislike a book but hype it anyway as a favor/service to the author then I am doing a disservice to my readers. The readers are the ones who come to my blog everyday and keep me doing what I'm doing. My loyalty is to them first

    If that means I must continue to buy books out of my own pocket rather than receive free books, so be it.

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  2. Before you leave do you brush your teeth with a bottle of Jack...?

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  4. I just have not been able to break into that ARC community. I have received a few, but find the competition to win some (like on Good Reads) just too darn time consuming. I guess I will just need to be content to purchase my books. I am definitely not a book seller on my blog--and I would become deeply disappointed if some of my favorite blogging friends began to promote books as outstanding even if they felt otherwise. I feel blogging is a hobby--it is not my job! Great thoughtful post you have written!
    *smiles*

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  5. Reader first here too. Always.

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  6. I know this isn't the overall point of your post, but I got my hub an iPod touch for his birthday last week and already I am an Angry Birds widow. I'll keep the fact that there is a new version to myself for now :-)

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  7. Last time I was in Borders, I passed a display of YA books and I recognized all the covers. I don't actively follow any YA blogs, yet via blogging osmosis, I was already sick of all the current ones being promoted. But then, I rarely read YA. I left that demographic decades ago.

    If all bloggers write about are the books the industry's promoting in the stores, how can anyone determine if blogging had an effect? And why should we even care?

    Like you, Chris, I just want to be a reader. I wish more bloggers would be satisfied with being readers as well, instead of trying to be useful to the industry and gain its respect.

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  8. I will have to look into that Whats Old Is New post... sounds interesting!

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  9. Rachel- I don't think there's anything wrong with ARCs but it doesn't guarantee that I'll "sell" it. If I'm enthusiastic about the books I read, then that's a happy byproduct.

    Raych- Got to wonder about that girl's oral hygiene. I wouldn't want to be her dentist.

    Kim- Thanks! I don't seek out many ARCs. Some of the ones I'm offered I want to read but some don't appeal at all. It's a mixed bag.

    Nymeth- Yay, readers!

    Suzanne- Take anything you can from my post! That Angry Birds is so addictive and then there's the holiday version and now Rio.

    SFP- Yeah, I'm not going to wrack my brains over it. I guess what bothers me is the implication that we must sell. Much smarter people than I are paid to do that.

    Sheila- I love their podcasts.

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  10. I read the interview and was shocked, to be honest. If a blogger is given a free book or some of a publicist's/author's/etc time then that's great, but we're not paid to do what we do and we do it for the love of books, there shouldn't be any kind of standard or expectation.

    The first time I received a free book I was excited, but remembering my readers and my own happiness in reading as far more important, followed soon afterward.

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  11. Charlie- I didn't get the warm fuzzies from s/he. I felt that the author was only interested in what s/he might get from bloggers. I don't think of what I can get from authors other than good story telling. I'm not looking for much else. I'm sorry if that was the experience s/he had with bloggers but, like I said, s/he must have found a couple that gave that impression. We're not all doing that. It's generalizing bloggers.

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  12. I with you! I am not a salesperson or a publicist. I am merely a reader trying to discuss the books I read. If I help a author sell a couple more books, that's fantastic! But that's just not what I am here for. I don't need my hobby to morph into a job.

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  13. I've been reaceiving ARCs like crazy since I started my blog two and a half months ago. But I'm also buying more NEW books now than I ever have before. It used to be that I'd buy my books at the library discard sale and thrift stores and read public domain titles. Now, since the book industry is changing at a phenomenal rate, I feel like I need to get my hands on all the paper books I can.

    As for being bought with ARCs..no way. I tend to only review titles I like, and just ignore the ones I don't. I'm sure that's not going to make me any friends with the publishers, but I sure as heck don't want an author breathing down my neck for some perceived slight, or a rant against my low ratings.

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  14. Same argument, different day. Though I do think that there are a handful of folks who give book bloggers a bad name or justify why some of these expectations from publishers or authors come up. Would be nice if the hobbiests could just separate themselves out from the people who are more aimed at marketing books on their blogs--though I think it's pretty clear who's who. What do I know. I've only read four books this year and reviewed two of those four. ;)

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