50 Days Until RARE ´19 London

Only 50 days left until RARE ´19 London!

 

Hard to imagine that in only 1200 hours I´ll be hopping from one author table to another with my two trusty book chicks.

The last time I posted a milestone post was when we hit the 100 days mark. There, Brina @Brina And The Books and I talked about our unicorn authors and who else we´re looking forward to meeting at the author signing.

This time my book bestie and I teamed up again to reveal our preparations for the event.

 

It´s been kind of a back and forth with this author signing event for me. The first thing I had to secure were tickets- The rest will be a piece of cake. A piece of triple fudge cake with extra chocolate sprinkles.

So what have I been doing to prepare for this event?

Normally, I´m the type of person who has all the time in the world until no more time is left. Then I run around like a headless chicken and panic. This time is different, though. I´m going in P.R.E.P.A.R.E.D. Because I´d like, for once, for things to happen smoothly. I don´t want to encounter any bumps along the way. My grand plan? A Check List.

 

 

Prep rare

 

Tickets for the event: 

Flight:  

Hotel: 

Get my hair done:

List for Unicorn authors:

 

 

Those are my essentials. My must-haves or else why bother. The tickets were the first thing we purchased. Then we went ahead and marked all the authors we´re dying to see ( the list is real, y´all ). Since I travel a lot I always have power banks in a bag so there won´t be a problem with that. Comfy shoes are a MUST HAVE. a) I´m in London. I´ll be putting some miles behind me. b) I´ll probably be standing most of the time at the event.

Then there´s the issue with my hair. Does anyone remember what Madonna looked like back in the ’80s? Yeah. That´s what I have. I´ve been married to my flat iron ( or straightener ) since I stopped ironing my hair with a clothes iron.

 

 

madonna
Nope. 

 

 

Money has been an issue ever since the tickets were bought. How many books do I want to buy? How many can I afford? How many books can fit in my suitcase? Do I need 2 suitcases or a suitcase and carry-on? An extra duffle bag? This is why I decided I won´t buy more than 10 books at the event. 1 book costs about 10 smackers. Ten is a good limit, I think. Besides- I just can´t carry more than 10 books, including my own luggage, around with me.

The flight: In preparation for my flight I had to think long and hard about what I wanted. I´m flying in from Germany. That´s a 1.5-hour flight. To fly in early on Friday or late? I have no flipping clue. All I know is that I have to get my butt in gear or else I won´t be able to get a flight at all.

Don´t get me started with a hotel room. I have yet to book a place to stay at.

 

 

My inner 20-year-old is having a field day knowing I´ll be without my kids and husband for a few days! * sigh * It´s been so long since I had a moment for myself. So, the RARE weekend will be a whole other experience on so many levels for me.

From what´s been posted in RARE´s social media groups some authors are offering pre-order books for the event. I´ve decided against this for a few reasons:

 

  1. Sometimes books don´t arrive with the authors and that can lead to an author not having books to sell/to have the pre-ordered books with them. I´ve seen this happen.
  2. I like the unknown. I´m that type who likes to talk to an author and ask them questions

 

I need a romance with relatable characters. Preferably characters that are close to 30 years old. Do you have that? You don´t? Then pick a book you´re most proud of and I´ll buy it.” ( of course, I only do this with authors I´m not well acquainted with) This isn´t just about wanting to read books and have those books signed. I´m at RARE to support authors as well.

A little chat gives me and the author the opportunity ( in 5 minutes) for book talk and maybe the casual small talk. I tried this at the Berlin ´17 signing and it worked beautifully.

I also won´t be taking any books to the event to have signed because… Well, it wouldn´t make sense for me.

To sum this up- I´m going into this signing half prepared, wearing sweats and sneakers, sporting fashionable era-appropriate hair to see my favorite authors and meet one ones. What an impression I´ll make, huh?

To see what my book babe Brina@Brina And The Books has done to prepare for RARE London ´19 just click here. I promise she´s much better at this preparation thing than I am ( because I´m like a total loser with these things )

 

Okay, I guess that´s it for now. Until next time, my dear bookish Padawans.

Sending you much love,

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Hello August.

Hot damn! Time seems to fly by quicker than I thought it would. It´s August, my beloved bookish squad.

Instead of doing a book cover post, a monthly recap post or something heavily book related but I decided not to get too bookish this time. No. I want to welcome you all and the beginning of the new month by letting you in on something personal. Something that could possibly cost me a few followers. An insider joke, if you will. Okay, it´s not much of an insider joke when I´m the only one who knows about it ( and also finds it amusing as hell ) but hey… It´ll be fine. Don´t worry, a book is involved so this post won´t be completely bookless. All in the name of books, right?

I want to share what I found on one of my late-night searches for book covers.

 

 

For this to make any sense I think it would be wise to start with a little personal fun fact.

My husband. He´s a wonderful guy. We´ve been together for 19 years ( married 14 years ). What I love most about him are the many quirks he has. You know, the stuff people do that seem odd sometimes. That and his non-existent humor ( bless him for trying, though ).

Well, there´s something I call the “Stefan pose”. It´s where he stands like he´s preparing to analyze something. Hands on hips and a serious stare. Much like this:

 

Stefan
A most recent Stefan Pose

 

Don´t waste your time trying to figure out what he´s analyzing. He´s looking at a waterfall. There were no ancient drawings or signs to read. * sigh * I´ve learned it´s best to let him do his thing. Don´t ask questions.

Well, he does this all the time. No matter where we are, who we´re with… He´ll whip out that move unintentionally. I have this type of pic for every vacation we´ve been on.

Okay, so now you know about the `Stefan Pose`. It´s time to get to my private joke.

The other night I was looking for specific book covers for upcoming posts. I stumbled upon a gem that had me laughing all night. I´m talking a hysterical laughing fit with tears and hiccups. I usually laugh this intense when I watch comedies or favorite movies ( Christmas Vacation- The squirrel scene ). When I saw this book cover I just couldn´t.

 

 

Best Book Cover pose!! Like Stefan
The `Stefan Pose` on a book cover!!

 

 

Do you see it? Do you?!

Ever since I spotted that cover I cannot unsee the bogus image of my husband playing a part in what looks like a romance novel. My husband. Stefan. In a romance novel.

 

 

I don´t think I´ll ever get over this.

 

Yes, I´m fully aware that there´s a huge possibility that you don´t find this funny. I have a very odd sense of humor sometimes. My deepest apologies. I can be weird.

Before things can get any weirder I think it would be best if I logged off for the day.

I hope you enjoyed this little personal tidbit. If not, just leave me a comment below. I´m not sure I´ll be able to justify my humor but I´ll see what I can do to make up for this weird welcoming post for August.

 

Sending out lots of bookish love.

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Do You Tag Authors In Negative Reviews?

This post is dedicated to everyone in the book community.

A huge shout out goes to Drew@The Tattooed Book Geek for inspiring me with his post. If you haven´t already be sure to check his thoughts on the subject out right here.

Unfortunately, this to-tag-or-not-to-tag-authors issue has been around for some time now. It pops up on social media and vanishes just as quick as it came. It´s no secret that many authors hate being tagged in review posts on social media. Why? Well, because it´s hurtful. It´s mean. It´s degrading and humiliating. How dare someone put an author on the spot like that.

 

 

That´s what people say. On a few occasions, I´ve seen some authors post something like this on their social media.

“It´s not nice to be tagged in a negative post. Please don´t tag me. It´s rude.”

 

And even some book bloggers will join in and offer their two cents into the mix.

 

„This is NOT okay. Do NOT be cruel by tagging authors in negative reviews.“

 

And I agree to some degree. I agree that you shouldn´t be a hurtful asshat then go off and rub it under an author´s nose. That´s about it, though.

Personally, I don´t see myself siding with the people who believe negativity is harmful. Because I´m the type of person who thinks negativity is necessary. Even if it´s a tag in a post that leads to a negative review. So, to answer the question above:

Yes, I tag authors in negative review posts. And if I´m honest, I don´t really lose a night´s sleep over it, either. I´m okay with sharing my opinions, positive and negative alike, and tagging the people who wrote the books I reviewed online because that´s what I do. That´s my purpose as a book blogger. I´m confident about my work and know that nothing I upload is harmful. Maybe thought-provoking but never harmful. Some book bloggers don´t write negative reviews at all, which is also okay. But I do and I can totally live with myself.

 

Now, before anyone who´s already disagreeing with me or thinking of accusing me of being mean, rude or tactless… Please hear me out because this isn´t meant to be rude or insensitive. This is just my take on the problem. Thank you in advance.

 

After having given this topic lots of thought I´ve come to less than pleasant conclusions as to what the real issues are.

 

#1   Tags are just tags. I think tags can be compared to flies. All´s good until one of those suckers manages to get inside your house and ends up bugging the shit out of you at night when you want to sleep. But, it´s just a fly, you know? That itsy bitsy little flying insect can be dealt with. Well, it´s the same with tags. The negative ones are annoying as well when they appear. Fortunately, tags can be dealt with. Unfortunately, some authors feel the need to lash out on social media. All because of a tag. I admit- this is interesting to see but I can´t help to feel uncomfortable. Why react when you could just deal with it? There´s always time to complain after having tried to iron out the problem.

 

#2   Some authors are spoiled. I know, it sounds so awful but if you think about it, it does make sense. From what I´ve seen, some of the authors who´ve complained about being tagged in negative review posts have been carried on a silver platter for so long by book bloggers they´ve forgotten that negative opinions exist. The end result is: They´ll throw an online tantrum via social media posts and complain about how rude it is to tag their name to a negative post.

 

#3   Some authors are picky. So, it´s okay to tag them in a positive review post but not a negative one. Because that´s what their complain posts say: “Do not tag me in a negative review post. That´s rude.”  Or, am I missing something here? They´ll share/retweet a positive review post but will complain about a negative one. They´re basically rewarding good behavior online and protesting against an opinion they don´t approve of. If authors want feedback, they´ll get feedback. 

 

#4  Negative reviews aren´t always truly negative. I´m sure many can agree with me on this one. There´s a huge difference between wanting to share an opinion and being a cold-hearted bitch on a mission. What helps here is just taking some time off to find out why there was negativity in the first place. If someone has said that the book wasn´t their cup of tea or that they weren´t able to bond with the characters then that can´t be classified as negativity and should be accepted without further ado. Didn´t like what I offered? I´m sorry you feel that way. I hope you´ll find time to check out my other works. I´m sure I have a book you´d like.

 

#5   Authors aren´t the only beings wanting attention. Shocking, I know. It´s hard to believe anyone else wants to make a name for themselves. This point is so damn obvious that it hurts to think about it. There are reasons why a book blogger will tag an author in a negative post.

  1. They want the attention
  2. They want the author to see the review

I can´t fault a book blogger for wanting attention. They have goals just as any author does. What can also come across as a little shocking is: Some book bloggers aren´t working their blogs for authors. They´re doing it for themselves and their followers who rely on their opinions. When they tag an author in a negative review post they´re saying:

“Just dropping by to let you know I read your book. I ended up not liking it.”  And then they move on, allowing an author to check their review out. When this happens they don´t think about an author´s feelings just as an author won´t think about theirs. Is that terrible? I don´t think it is.

 

#6   Feelings. Some authors will not hold back and share their feelings. “Just stop and think about how this makes me feel.”   * nod *  * shaking head * Without wanting to sound like a complete bitch- Book bloggers should be mindful at all times? Book bloggers need to be considerate AND careful not to put a dent in a book´s reputation? This is asking for the impossible. Look, this whole thing is basically an exchange. Author publishes a book and book blogger/reviewer leaves a review.  Not every book blogger can puke rainbows for everyone. Many reviewers aren´t interested in walking on eggshells. 

 

#7   It´s about the book, not the author. This point can be tied with #4. Some authors fail to recognize that they´re selling a product. If someone doesn´t like the product they´re going to complain to the manufacturer. In most cases, that´s exactly what a book blogger is doing- letting the author know what they thought via social media tag.  But authors take this personally because the books they´ve written are often considered to be their “babies”.

 

So, what´s the real problem here? Is it the review, the reviewer/book blogger or the tag? Or perhaps it´s an author?

 

The core of this evil is a combination of all four. Without the reviewer, there wouldn´t be a negative review and without both and social media there wouldn´t be a tag. And without some authors, there wouldn´t be complaints. Sounds like we could all be living wonderfully quiet lives, huh?

 

After having been a part of the book universe for so long I´ve learned that whatever you do, things won´t ever play out the way you want them to. You, as a book blogger, will always be judged. Your blog will always be judged. Your opinions and posts will be judged. You can be as fake or as genuine as you like- your critique ( no matter how mild or diplomatic ) will not be accepted.  The same applies to authors: No matter what you write about there will always be people who´ll have strong opinions. You can´t keep away the hate. You can´t avoid a tag. You can´t prevent tags in negative review posts from happening. A post about it will not convince someone to stop.

 

Of course- all this is worthless when an author comes across a bitch on a mission. The book bloggers who are hateful and personal should rethink their blog philosophy and work on their social skills. Just as sensitive/stubborn authors who´re constantly offended by everything that´s not a praise should.

 

This is a community. We´re in it for a reason. We need each other to exist. Book bloggers depend on books to read and review and authors need readers and reviews. As annoying as negative tags are for authors, there not worth the fuss. Because in the end- It´s a tag.

So you see, there´s no win/win situation here.  * sigh *

The key is to be civilized. If we can´t act in a civilized manner then we need to step away and breathe.

 

On a friendly note: As stated above- None of this is meant to hurt someone. I´m not pointing fingers at anyone in particular. I´m only sharing my observations. I´m positive many will disagree with me on this subject and some will actually agree.

On an even friendlier note: Remember- It´s okay. If you´re a book blogger who does or doesn´t share negative reviews on social media then you´re okay. You´re not going against any rules because there aren´t any. It´s also okay to tag authors in positive and negative review posts, as long as you´re being civilized, no harm is done. Always keep in mind that just because someone doesn´t approve doesn´t mean you´re doing something wrong. Tag authors. Give them feedback. Let them know you exist.

 


 

I´m afraid to ask: What about you? Do you care enough about this topic to chat about it? Do you tag authors in negative review posts? 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. And if you didn´t then that´s okay.

I hope you all have a wonderful day.

Take care,

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Book Review: The Diary Of A Bookseller – Shaun Bythell

synopsis single

Shaun Bythell owns The Bookshop, Wigtown – Scotland’s largest second-hand bookshop. It contains 100,000 books, spread over a mile of shelving, with twisting corridors and roaring fires, and all set in a beautiful, rural town by the edge of the sea. A book-lover’s paradise? Well, almost … In these wry and hilarious diaries, Shaun provides an inside look at the trials and tribulations of life in the book trade, from struggles with eccentric customers to wrangles with his own staff, who include the ski-suit-wearing, bin-foraging Nicky. He takes us with him on buying trips to old estates and auction houses, recommends books (both lost classics and new discoveries), introduces us to the thrill of the unexpected find, and evokes the rhythms and charms of small-town life, always with a sharp and sympathetic eye.


 

My Thoughts 2

 

What a charming read. A pessimistic bookseller ( Shaun, the author ) reveals what goes down in his bookshop. Not the first person who had this idea for a book but, to be honest, I don´t mind that at all.

`The Diary Of A Bookseller` by author Shaun Bythell is the most charming ( with a less charming bookstore owner ) and charismatic non-fiction/memoir I´ve read this year.

 

Peculiar. Sarcastic. Amusing. Enlightening.

 

Online sales, customer dealings, employee interaction, book sales/trades/purchases,… So much wonderful insight presented in a diary format. This sounds like a book lover´s dream come true. And, it IS a book lover´s dream come true. For everyone else, this is probably the worst book that has ever ben published. The Diary Of A Bookseller

I really enjoyed this book but I would have enjoyed it more had it not been so repetitive at times.

The issue with a 310-page book that is filled with diary entries is: It´s hard to keep them exciting all the time. I admit- I felt a strong urge to skim every other diary entry, but I didn´t. I felt I owed it to the bookshop owner for some reason.

Here´s a guy who´s put so much time and effort into documenting his experiences. His snarky comments, the sarcasm, his voice… I fully appreciated everything. This book deserves attention from a book lover.

After having read this book I´m 100% positive that I never want to be a bookshop owner. Like- Ever. Hats off to Shaun, though. For keeping the bookstore tradition going.


 

Would I recommend this book? Yes. I would. If you love the diary format then you´ll love this non-fiction. Also a great read for fans of bookshop owner Bernard Black from the British sitcom Black Books!

Would I reread this book? Probably not. There are definitely parts I´d like to reread sometime but from start to finish? I don´t think I will.


 

 

The Cover – 4 Stars:  A perfect cover for this book. Very fitting.

The Story – 3 Stars:  The book is a memoir. The author graciously granted insight on the monotonous life as a bookseller. If it wasn´t for the dragging entries…

The Character – 4 Stars:   You could feel sorry for Shaun but then again- He chose the bookshop and it looks like the shop has turned him into a snarky yet humorous person. He´d be my friend in real life, I´m sure.

My emotional state after finishing this read – Satisfied.

 

4 stars

 

You can buy `The Diary Of A Bookseller on Amazon.com

 

Thank The Books It´s Friday

Helloooo * insert sing-song voice*.

Welcome to another magnificent Friday. I hope you all are ready to kick back and relax because… you all deserve it.

I decided that this week´s weekend kick-off is going to be a little different. Sit tight, buckle up, my dear book-loving gang… My beloved followers and avid commenters. I´m about to unload a bunch of sap.

At first, I thought about baking you a cake. But then I remembered how apocalyptic my cake baking skills are ( I can screw up a Betty Crocker cake mix because I´m THAT special ). This is why I bought brownies. So, these are for you. A thank you for sticking around for so long and letting me torture you with some of my odd posts.

brownies

Then I thought of other things that could show my appreciation. Things I would randomly give people who are nothing but kind, funny and supportive- Such as the dedicated bunch who follow me and show me through the comments that my posts aren´t for nothing. Thank YOU!

flowers

But what good are brownies when I´m the only one eating them? I can´t share my brownies with you. What good are flowers when you all aren´t able to accept them properly?

It dawned on me that there´s nothing I could give you as a token of my appreciation for what you´ve given me. Which is sad. The internet and its ability to let us all communicate while we´re all scattered across the world is a blessing. But it does have one major downside – We´re all still worlds apart. This makes it harder for me to invite everyone over for a BBQ or meet for drinks. I´d like to return the love I´ve received in some form but… I can´t. Not really. So, you´ll have to do with a simple Thank You.

I know. That´s nothing special, either. But it´s all I have. Just my fat fingers holding up a sign. * sigh *

Thank you from the bottom of my heart ❤ Your comments made me smile. All your likes don´t go unnoticed and they´re much appreciated. ❤

Drew @The Tattooed Book Geek

Norrie @Reading Under The Blankie

Jonny @Jaunts & Haunts

Jess @No Fiction Chaser

eLPy @Little Face Publications

Inge @The Belgian Reviewer

Tetiana @Unbolt Me

Shannon @Spellbound Librarian

Marie @Marie´s Book Boutique

Christine @Purple Manatees

Davida @The Chocolate Lady´s Book Review Blog

Elizabeth @Lizs Book Buffet

Brina @Brina And The Books

Dini @dinipandareads

Deanna @A Novel Glimpse ( Deanna moved to – A Novel Glimpse )

Pooja @lifesfinewhine

Stefanie @The Magic Of Wor(l)ds

Ami @Luv To Read

Debby @alwaysbooking

Elaine @Elaine Howlin – Literary Blogger

Sara @The Bibliophagist

Jack @Book Reviews/ Jack´s Bedtime Reading

I´m sure I´ve forgotten quite a few avid commenters and blog post likers. I apologize deeply for not having mentioned you. I hope you feel just as included like the rest.

Also…

A huge THANK YOU goes out to all the new Morgana´s Book Box followers. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. If you want to know what this blog is all about I would kindly suggest you click Hello & Welcome instead of visiting the About Me. I haven´t included a read-worthy About Me yet * shamefully hiding face *. Although- I´ll probably update my About Me by the time you all see this, so… You´re welcome to take a look at either. ❤

Puuh. I guess that´s it.

Feel hugged. Feel loved. Know that you’ve made an impact. 💜

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