Terrible Book Conversations I´ve Had

 

In an ideal world, we´d be able to talk about books and our conversation partners would respond exactly the way we´d want them to respond.

Curious. focused. Interested. And above all – willing to engage in a pleasant exchange. Much as the way we behave when someone mentions books.

We don´t live in an ideal world, though. And we don´t always have the opportunity to have great book chats at parties, coffee meet-ups, dates, etc. Which is sad. What´s there not to love about book talk? There are so many book-related topics one can discuss. Cover art/design, story, editing, Kindle Unlimited, Kindles, genres… You can chat about what book topic you like. There are no limits.

I´ve had my fair share of book conversations over the years. Some were great. Some were questionable. But all in all, I´ve had a decent amount of memorable bookish téte-á-tétes. And as it is with everything else in life – The negative often stands out best.

I´m an extroverted book person. I love to hang out with the people who curse themselves my family and closest friends. I love people and I enjoy meeting new people.

What I don´t love is to have conversations about blogging or reading. Why? Because more often than not I have bookish discussions with non-readers, with self-proclaimed intellects, worldly people and… with my mother. I’m a very patient and open-minded person. But certain discussions can literally drive me bonkers.

Alas, here are a few much-hated book/blog conversations I´ve had in the past years.

 


#1 `You… blog?` – with an emphasis on `you`

You´d laugh at this if you knew how many times people have said that too me. Usually, people say this with a confused and/or amused look on their faces. As if the concept of me blogging is totally bogus. At first, I thought it was because I don´t necessarily look like a blogger. But then again – What does a book blogger look like? I have the proper attire ( comfortable clothes and a mug permanently attached to my hand ) and I certainly have the unrequired qualifications. Is it because of my wrinkles? It´s true that the years haven´t been too kind to me but still… Is it an age thing? Or is it just me in general?

 

 

I feel a little bummed when people approach me with this because it kind of makes me feel out of place.

” Yes, I´ve been blogging for years.”, is what I usually reply with and quickly switch the topic. It´s not that I´m ashamed of blogging and don´t want to talk about it. I most certainly am not ashamed of what I do in my spare time. I just don´t want to make the situation more awkward than it already is.

 

 

 

#2 `Romance novels?!` – spoken in a high pitched tone

Yes, I read romance novels. I blog about romance novels. The shame. THE SHAME. * insert dramatic voice *

Look, I´m fully aware that the romance genre isn´t that popular. Not everyone can stomach so much fluff. I don´t blame anyone who doesn´t like romances because I truly know how difficult they can be. Love is complicated sometimes and people would rather like to lose themselves in something with a little more excitement. I get it. But that doesn´t mean others can´t enjoy romances. The most popular ( and most hated for me ) things people say to me during discussions are:
” You don´t strike me as the type who reads romances.” Your people reading skills have failed you this time, huh?
” I never knew you were the romantic type.” Oh, just shut up already. I don´t need to be romantic if I want to read a romance novel.
“Are romance novels still a thing?” Who invited you to this party?!

Then there´s the audible reaction- Laughter. As if the genre´s a joke. Weeeell, it´s just as much of a joke as any other genre, I can assure you. Ask me how amusing I find the battleship that was in your last book.

This is something I don´t like.

 

 

 

#3 `I thought you only read romance novels`

 

 

No. I never said I only read romance novels. I may blog about romances and read lots of romance novels but my tastes go in all directions, honey. You just made your own assumptions. You may get over the shock now because this isn´t a shocking moment. It shouldn´t be.

I understand that small talk often doesn´t give opportunities to get to know someone better. If those people had listened carefully, though, they´d have known I read anything that sounds remotely interesting. Fantasy, horror, thrillers, YA, contemporary romances, biographies… My bookshelves aren´t decorated with one genre only.

This is a clear case of I-was-only-half-listening-and-picked-up-one-word-to-hang-onto. Which is fine. But it´s annoying when people lock you in a lane and call it a day. Romance reader = reads romances 24/7. This might fit someone else´s bill but not mine.

 

 

 

#4 The `Why` Questions

 

  • Why do you blog for free?
  • Why do you read so much?
  • Why not blog full time?
  • Why put up with everything?

 

Sometimes a book/blog conversation makes it to the next step. This means that your conversation partner was interested and wants to know more. They start throwing more questions your way. This is a tricky step because in most cases the conversations change from light to melancholic. Because the answers you give don´t make any sense to them.

I´m blogging for free because I just don´t make any money. This concept is alien for someone when they find out your hobby can be compared to a full-time job. If I´d give my hobby enough attention then yes… I would feel the need to want to get paid, too. But I don´t so…

I read so much because I love to read. Again, this is something someone who doesn´t blog or doesn´t like to inhale books won´t always understand. “I like to read, too, and you don´t see me reading 2 books a week.” I know, buddy. I know. Let´s meet for coffee so I can give you a complete rundown on why I read so much.

As to why I don´t blog full time: I love blogging but I don´t love it enough to make it my daytime job. Truth be told- I´d be a miserable schmuck if I had to do this during the day. Besides, I love my part-time day job. I also need something where I´m able to distance myself from the virtual world. As much as I love to sit here and chat with you all I do need human contact once in a while.

Why do I put up with everything? By this they mean going online, writing reviews, hanging out on social media, chatting with authors, bloggers and friends, dealing with positive and negative feedback, etc. I do this because- Why the hell not? Why do people do what they do? Beats me. But if it brings them any type of happiness then that shouldn´t be questioned.

I can tell by the looks on people’s faces when they think I’m wasting my time with my hobby.

I don´t mind the `Why` questions. It´s just that, for me, it feels like I´m justifying book blogging and reading, and that´s what I don´t like. No matter what I say they´ll never understand so I avoid the next step questionnaire at all costs.

 

 

 

#5 `That´s not a proper book.` – My mother said.

I love my mother to bits. We´re nothing alike but we get along wonderfully. I´m the super mellow version of the atomic bomb that is my mom. So, you can imagine how different our reading tastes are? They´re worlds apart, and even that´s too close.

Sometime during my teenage years, my reading tastes changed. I began picking up comics and short stories. I don´t remember what possessed me back then to show my mother my newest purchase but I did and that earned me one of the most horrifying discussions I´ve ever had, including a painful 1997 powerpoint presentation on the books she deems worthy of being called proper reads.

A traumatizing experience for me. I didn´t like the book she challenged me to read. To this day my mother tells me I don´t read proper books when she overhears a book convo between me and my brother. The last book that wasn´t proper according to mom? `Political Correctness Gone Mad ` by Stephen Fry, Jordon Peterson, Michael Eric Dyson, and Michelle Goldberg. Oh, but the Laura Ingalls Wilder books are?!

I know many people who think someone´s reading history isn´t what can be considered proper literature. I mean, okay. Fine. You do you and more power to you. But don´t tell me or anyone else what´s proper and what´s not.
I have the “That´s not a proper book” conversation at least twice a year with mom.

 

 

 

 

#6 `You read too much.´

One of the few moments that have me coughing, gasping and sputtering- When someone just pulls out the `You read too much` card. The nerve. As if it´s a terrible thing to read a lot. Well, for some people, I´m sure reading is horrible. But I like to read. Telling me I read too much is like telling me I blink too often. Huh? Say what? Please, repeat that. And they will. Even with so much confidence that it makes you question them:
“Yeah, you read too much. You need to get out more and live. See the world and stuff.”

 

 

Aah, now I get it.

It wouldn´t help to explain that by reading I am seeing a world- One an author has created. I am living when I read- I live the lives of many characters.

But these people mean reality. Okay, I can do reality, too. So I start telling them this:
“It´s all about time management. I can get out, live, see the world and STILL read a lot.”

* Sigh *

 

 

#7  `Book blogging isn´t a real hobby`

Okay, one could argue over that. Some people think book blogging is a hobby. Some think it´s work. I think it depends on the blogger and how they treat book blogging.  I don´t continue any discussions on this topic because it´s pointless.

So, book blogging isn´t a hobby. What can be considered a hobby? A hobby is an activity done regularly in one´s leisure time for pleasure. Book blogging doesn´t fall into that category? Do I need to take tennis lessons so I can say I have a hobby? Horse riding? How about collecting stamps?

When someone says book blogging isn´t a hobby I would like for nothing more than to have a strong drink.

 

 


 

Thankfully, not everybody I talk to says these things or reacts shocked or appalled. Sometimes I have wonderful book conversations with people who are genuinely interested in my hobby. Sometimes a book convo will end with:

“I think what you´re doing is really cool.”  Thank you.

I live for these moments. It´s not often when someone thinks I´m actually doing something useful ( aside from my “real” hobbies, of course ).

Here´s to many more terrible book conversations!

 


 

What about you? Have you had terrible book discussions at parties or with friends? What was your best / worst book talk? Let me know in the comments below. I´d love to chat. ❤


 

Thank you for taking the time to read this post. I hope you enjoyed.

 

Much bookish love,

 

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12 thoughts on “Terrible Book Conversations I´ve Had

  1. Loving this post! You make some really strong, valid points. People just don’t get it. And if you’re an author too? Good luck closing those floodgates. The never-ending, “shouldn’t you be writing?” question drives me nuts. Or “So your books are at Barnes and Noble?” Who cares! That’s not necessarily a measurement of success, people!

    As far as blogging, I actually haven’t had many negative conversations with people at all. I simply tell my friends and anyone that listens that this is an extension of myself and I want to spread the good word.

    Then again, people who know me know that I don’t like having my buttons pressed, so that’s a factor too lol (I’m very no-nonsense). They’re probably too nervous/scared to ask some of the questions you presented, which is good for me because I don’t have to give them my awkward eye-popping stare. O.O

    Taurus at its best, haha!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. So, you´reonly successful when your books can be found at B&N? *DYING* Or, you can only call yourself an author if your books hit the shelves? ( because I can see people thinking like that ). I can only imagine how hard it must be for authors when they´re out in public. Lol. And I feel for you all. `Shouldn´t you be writing?` HAHAHAHA. YOU. ARE. NOT. SUPPOSED. TO. HAVE. A. LIFE.

      That´s a good thing to say to people- Blogging is an extension of yourself. 🙂

      You´re a Taurus? 🙂 You´re the second Taurus I know ( well, am aware of ). I´ve heard about Taurus being exactly the way you described yourself. Which is good. I sometimes wish people would act the same around me. Hats off to you for even being able to do the awkward eye-popping stare! All I get is “Are you even listening to me?” Yes, yes I am. I´m listening better than you think.
      People around me think I´m aloof and highly unpredictable ( which is true for Aquarius. Lol ) When I have one of these book convos you can bet my head is running wild with thoughts on how summon a black hole and let it swallow all book conversationalists in one go.
      I´m so happy you enjoyed this post 🙂 Looks like you lot aren´t immune, either. * sigh *

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Haha, right? Technically I am at Barnes and Noble, just not on the physical shelves. And as for the life, what life? Lol

        Yeah, it’s totally true. I mean, we put ourselves out there every time we post. 🙂

        Oh yeah, Tauruses are stubborn and I have the ginger thing going on so I can have a very short fuse at times depending on what’s being said. I pity the fool! :p

        Hey, if its any consolation, I think unpredictability is a great trait! I try to be, but Tauruses tend to like stability and can be a little bland. I stick to a schedule most times. Boooooo Jonny, Booooo.

        Lol I can only imagine how satisfying that black hole scenario is when you play it through your head, especially if its an awkward situation that you desperately want out of.

        Yeah, I always enjoy your posts friend!

        Oh god, none of us are safe around here!

        PS: As a bit of extra Jonnyness, I broke things off with another guy. He was basically chasing me into a relationship and I was trying to keep my cool but ended up snapping and ending the whole thing. Way to go, Taurus! Haha

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Hey, that counts. It´s not a sin if your books aren´t standing on an actual shelf.
          yeah, life- That something we all would like to have back at some point. HAHAHA.
          I´ve heard of Taurus being stubborn. Should I be afraid because you have that double stubborn factor going on? OMG, I just realized- I´m known for ticking people off. I HEARBY APOLOGIZE for anything I say in advance. * hides face * I mean, I just got you to consider me as your friend ( which I ADORE ). Would hate for me to spoil things before they´ve developed.

          I´ve also heard that stability is a strong Taurus trait. Bland? Really? I wouldn´t have thought.

          You think unpredictability is a great trait to have? Would you mind swapping zodiac signs for a while? Lol. JK. To be honest- I don´t notice my own unpredictability much. I´m spontaneous and like to change things up a lot ( which is an Aquarius trait ). I dislike to be stuck with a routine ( in all areas in life ). Which is sad. I believe a routine/schedule is so important but can´t seem to follow up.

          That black hole- Comes in handy, I swear. Lol. Try it out and you´ll see the fun behind it.

          Nope. And I´m learning with each day that the longer we´re in this place the higher our chances are at being confronted with every type of situation and person.

          PS: Noooooo. That´s unfortunate. 😦 But, a little understandable that you reacted that way. I don´t blame you one bit. I, too, would´ve snapped. You just can´t be pushy like that. Why not just let things happen naturally instead of chasing someone? After all these years my husband is still wondering how he managed not to scare me away after he proposed. Lol. I immediately feel caged in when it comes to commitment. Marriage is okay, though. Not as bad as I thought. AHAHAHAHA.

          I´m so sorry you had to break things off with the guy. Could he have been long term relationship material?

          Like

          1. Haha, yeah I pretty much am living life through my friends at this point, which isn’t a bad thing at all. At a bonfire at the moment. Smores!

            Nah, you’re good! I’m not really that easy to exacerbate with my friends. Its only in certain situations where we can sometimes take things too far but it takes a lot.

            I mean, sometimes I hate my routine because of how much it grounds me, but ultimately it gets me to where I want to be.

            Lol let’s switch for a week and see how it goes! I think my hesitancy of being super spontaneous is due to my perceived perception of how much stress it could possibly be, which tells you how inside my own head i can get lol.

            Haha, I’ll try it and get back to you!

            Ps: yeah, I am recently dealing with the fact that i don’t think I want to live in Kansas city anymore. I’m thinking I may move to Denver in a year or two. So right now I’m not really on the relationship train. And he was SUPER chasing me, so I feel vindicated in how I handled things. I wanted to be kind and do the right thing, but screw it. I just wasn’t into him as much as I hoped to be. On to the next one.

            I also think I may need therapy at this point because someone who treats me with respect somehow tends to turn me off. Maybe I’m damaged goods, but I don’t want a white picket fence, you know? I want something that’s real and true.

            Liked by 1 person

            1. Naaw. You´re not damaged goods. You just have a specific picture of how your relationship should be. Wanting real and true could mean you need a challenge. Maybe someone who´s a little more like you? I wasn´t able to date kind and caring men. It´s what we should be looking for in a partner, right? Kind, considerate, gentle. Above all- careful. To be honest- That was a turn off for me. I needed all colors of the spectrum. Until I met the husbutt. He hated me. And I him with a passion. We had mutual friends so avoiding him was close to impossible. So I kept an eye on him ( I´m uber observant ) and got to know him by watching his reactions and listening to his convos. I eventually fell for him. Because he was real. I definitely met my match. Hearts and flowers ( although lovely ) make me run for the hills. He wasn´t willing to give me either because for him I was ( still am ) unpredictable, stand-offish and hard to read. I´m keeping my fingers crossed for you, friend. 🙂 You´re not a lost cause because no one is. One day you´ll find a wonderful partner and I´ll be here rooting for you 🙂

              Denver is a beautiful place to live. You should move 🙂 ( lived there for a year ). Although Kansas City isn´t too shabby, either. Why would you want to move?

              Being spontaneous isn´t as stressful as it seems. 🙂 Trust me, it´s harmless. Bugs everyone else around me but it´s not too bad.

              Yupp. That´s basically how it works- If you´re not interested you move on. No point in sticking around when you don´t feel like it.

              Smores? * sob * I haven´t had one of those in… Ever since I moved here.

              Liked by 1 person

              1. Aw thanks friend! I haven’t really met someone on my level in a long time other than that Eric guy. That’s why I fell so fast. I really liked him and he liked me just as much, or at least I thought so at the time.

                I love your story with your husbutt (lol at the word husbutt!). That actually gives me hope right about now. I don’t want the perfect guy by any means. I’d rather him be flawed and me ultimately love those flaws for what they are. Thanks so much for having so much faith in me!

                Yeah, Denver seems like an easy move, and I’d easily be able to switch law firms (my bland day job lol) with my good record so far to one there. There are many reasons I’m done with Kansas City, but ultimately I’m just over it. I’ve lived here almost eight years and this entire time there’s been something missing. I see people settling down all around me, especially my friends. I have been bored with the same old thing for years. I use vacations to switch the scenery up, but its really not enough. I just don’t care about Kansas City anymore and I think if I stay here another five years I’ll probably die of boredom. Don’t get me wrong. KC is a great place to settle down, but if you’re single and want adventure, this place sucks butt.

                Okay cool, I’ll try to be a little more spontaneous here and there and test things out. Sometimes that’s exactly what you need. 🙂

                I mean, this last guy is just what I mentioned a couple paragraphs up. I just don’t want that kind of relationship with someone. If someone’s really into me and comes at me with hearts in their eyes, I run. Why can’t people be mysterious and exciting rather than giving everything away all at once?

                *gasp* No smores? What kind of world are you living in?!?! *sobs for you*

                Like

  2. I’m laughing, because that seems so much easier than crying, but oh my gosh, all these things are so relatable. I don’t read romance, but I read a lot of YA and, *gasp* I’m not a teenager anymore! I’m almost sort of impressed that your mother was so offended by your reading tastes that she actually took the time to make a PowerPoint to set you straight. I mean, that’s some pretty hardcore dedication to Laura Ingalls Wilder. 😛

    I get the “you read too much” thing waaay too often. And for some reason, it’s never a compliment? I don’t get it. The best part is I live in a rural area, so I can choose a trail, spend a little while hiking, and waste a couple hours reading by a stream and do the see the world thing AND the reading thing at the time, so nyah. Great post!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. And I´m laughing because you´re so right! It is easier than crying. Lol. Yes! I can see how you´d receive that kind of feedback for reading YA. Same crap, different color. Pfft, my mom thought she did the world a service by trying to make me see the light. HAHAHA. She tried. She failed. Now, when she shows her latest book purchase I have the sudden urge to cry for help. HAHAHA.
      You´re right! It´s never a compliment although it should be. People should be amazed by how much readers love to read and that they have the ability to experience things you couldn´t with other stuff.
      THAT sounds like perfection: rual area, hiking and wasting time reading out in the open. I envy you so bad. * sigh *
      Thanks for commenting ❤ I totally appreciate it. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Oh, you poor, pitiful soul, having strayed into the darkness. For shame. For shaaaame. I feel like I got the easier route here. My mother acts like she’s a reader, but she’s not, so she won’t talk about books with me since she can’t keep up her public persona because I *know* she’s not a reader (and there’s nothing wrong with that, but don’t tell people you read all the time when you read five books a year, yo).

        Right? It’s one of the few things that someone can be really good at and love doing and it’s a negative thing. You never hear anyone say, “Gosh, you sure fix cars a lot.” *insert ‘omg you weirdo’ face* xD

        It’s not nearly as glamorous as people think because, you know, bugs. If you stop moving, that’s when they get you. But it’s pretty, at least, I’ll give you that.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. What a wonderful post you had there, I got to admit I laugh cause all were so relatable.
    I got I read too much, My parent questioning me about my reading, not spending money on things like cloth or food but books, taking book pictures and how book blogging is not blogging or what I am going to do with all this books, when it comes to the author they also have it worst.
    Great Post!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. YES! My parents are almost the same way. I totally understand where you´re coming from. But hey, I understand you. And you have support from the book community. We all understand.
      Yes, you´re right. I think authors have it worse. Thank you so much for commenting. ❤

      Like

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