This Book Blog With Have Info-Labels From Now On

`On A Kind Note…`

 

Sometimes a little reminder can´t hurt. Starting now, these little notes will be included in every blog post ( reviews not included ).

I´m aware that these reminders take the fun out of book blogging but it seems they´re necessary for those who refuse to see a blog post for what it is – A blog post.

 

KR1

 

KR2

 

KR3

 

KR4

 

 

 

And last but not least….

 

GTK1

 

GTK2

 

A total buzz-kill, I know. But as I said… Some people need a reminder, or they simply cannot exist in a word without little labels.


Did I miss anything? Do I need to include more? Let me know in the comments below. I´m open to new suggestions or additions.  


 

Feel hugged and share the book love,

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Why I Don´t Join Facebook Book Groups Anymore

Facebook book groups – Oh, how I love to hate and hate to love them.

 

You´d think there wouldn´t be much to tell about Facebook book groups. The truth is- There´s not enough time or space to put down every single detail about what goes on behind those invisible group walls.

From the groups themselves, how they operate, the interaction, etc. There´s a lot of ground to cover when wanting to discuss these groups. Topics I can´t possibly cram in one simple post. Because there are so many different types of Facebook book groups.  We´ve got groups for:

 

  • fans of book blogs
  • book groups for specific genres / mixed genre groups
  • author groups
  • book blogger support groups
  • book promotional groups
  • bookmarket groups
  • groups for individual books
  • Book character groups
  • groups for the smut-loving society
  • street team groups
  • beta reading groups

 

Whatever a book lover´s looking for, Facebook´s got it in spades.  You want it, you´ll find it. You´ll also find a little more ( or less ) than you bargained for. And you´ll be able to find these hangouts categorized into three different types of groups:

 

  • Open groups
  • Closed groups
  • Secret groups

 

From a neutral standpoint, I can say that Facebook book groups are truly a blessing. There are countless ways you can benefit from a Facebook book group. From meeting like-minded fans of a specific book to making new friends… Facebook book groups are a wonderful way to connect and receive book-related info.

Unfortunately- If you´ve been in the business long enough you eventually see the cursed side of these Facebook book groups. I´ve seen this side as I´m sure many others have. While some FB book groups are wonderful… some groups just aren´t great places to spend time in.

 

kind reminder

Okay. I think we´re good to go, now.

Alas! Here are my reasons why I don´t join Facebook book groups anymore.

 


#1    Dead Book Groups

 

At one point I realized I was following over 250 Facebook book groups. 250! And from 250, only a few were consistently active. There are many reasons for Facebook book groups becoming silent but I don´t feel like sticking around when there´s nothing to stick around for. Being a part of a group for no greater reason goes against the idea of a group. I don´t see a point in collecting inactive groups.

Yes, Facebook can be blamed for the deaths of many book groups, but many book groups can be blamed for their own deaths. Either way- I´m out.

 

 

#2  If You´ve Seen One…

 

Yes. I´m saying all Facebook book groups are very much alike.  Each group is more or less a copy of another. Is this a bad thing? Well, sharing the book love can never be considered an evil cause. It´s seeing the same posts, the same shared content that´s ruined it for me. Personally? Aside from the design and colors, I see no differences. Unless a Facebook book group has something that makes them stand out then I feel no need to follow anymore.

I know it´s hard to come up with a unique concept these days. It´s even harder to maintain a certain standard when so much is constantly changing. The idea is not to settle for the safe option and copy what works for others. If you want to stand out or be seen you

a) should offer something no one else offers

b) maybe sell the copied concept differently

c) invest time, sweat and love ( and money for ads )

It sounds so much easier than it actually is. Trust me – I know. But it´s possible.

 

 

#3  Dictator Admins

 

Do I need to say more? Yes, I do. Dictator admins are real. They´re also very busy people. Busy monitoring posts and comments like a crack whore, busy talking about themselves and their achievements, busy warning members and keeping them in check. Admins basically have all the power over a group, which is perfectly fine. But some like to wield that power and play King Fuck – Who doesn´t give two shits about what their members want or need because it´s only important what the admin says /does/wants.  They set the rules and it´s in everyone´s interest to follow these strict rules. Should any member fall out of line then there will always be some type of consequences. This is NOT fun.

I´ve been in many groups where the admins acted like this and I´ve always wondered what happened to make them act like glorified cunts. Do I have to continue to follow these people? Of course, not. Life is too short to follow these people.

Admins of Facebook book groups need to act as mentors and help their community feel like they´re in the best place ever. I don´t want to be in a group run by a dictator. I want to be in a group where the focus is on open communication, sharing content, helping each other, etc.

 

 

#4  Rules

 

Rules, schmules. As if book lovers need rules in a Facebook book group. It´s stated NOWHERE that a social media group needs rules, so why do many Facebook book groups have them? I have my suspicions. One of them includes a dictator admin.  Because how can you be an active member and contribute when you´re being restricted from the start?

  • Self-promotion is not allowed

So, a book blogger isn´t allowed to talk about / share their work even though the group could benefit from it. How unclever.

  • Offensive posts will be banned

First of all- Define the word `offensive`. Seems like everyone has a different definition these days. This point basically means that if the admin believes your post is offensive ( even though it isn´t ) you´ll be warned, banned, deleted, asked to leave, kicked out. Wonderful.

  • Healthy debates are welcome

No. They´re not. Don´t fool yourselves. Respectful opinions are never welcome because they´re often seen as an attack. Especially when you disagree with the admin or a golden card member. Most groups use this point to lure in debate friendly people and end up blocking them for not liking what they have to say.

These are just a few rules from MANY.

With so many rules how is someone supposed to act in a book group? Maybe not act at all? Always agree with everyone? That´s just ridiculous. I´m not in a book group to follow rules. I´m here to join in on the fun and to maybe learn a thing or two.

My personal experiences have taught me to stay far away from groups with so many rules.

 

 

#5   Secret Safe Havens For Dick Pic Haters

/ Secret Safe Havens for Dic Pic Lovers

 

There are groups and then there are secret groups. Since I mingle with the romance novel crowd ( where the smut levels range from 1 – 10  ) you can imagine what goes on in some book groups. Sometimes posts are squeaky clean and respectable ( even informative ) and sometimes you´re involuntarily rewarded with a dick pic of a firefighter on a Friday. That´s just how the romance world rolls. Am I bothered about this? No. I couldn´t care less, to be honest.

The funny thing, though, is that some of these Facebook romance book group members have created side groups for people who are offended by aesthetic pictures of respectable men * cough * And at the same time there  have been secret groups created for dic pic lovers where members can secretly share porn all day long in any shape, color or form.

 

” This group is a safe place for romance lovers. “

“This is a safe place for readers who like it dirty.”

 

 

At one point these secret groups were growing like weeds in the Facebook book community. So, I became a safe place member and a member of the dirty gang. My experience in safe places was short lived. I eventually removed myself – Wordlessly. Then I came to this bright conclusion:

It´s a picture. You always have the option to ignore oiled abs and a thrusting crotch. You may allow yourselves to look away and return at another, less sexual time.

If you read romance then you are familiar with the often raunchy sex that can often be compared to porn. You have no reason to feel offended by a picture of a firefighter stroking the one-eyed snake. I guarantee you, you´ve read worse.

This makes the romance book community look like a circus. I mean- There´s humor in everything but this is beyond ridiculous.

 

 

 

#6   The “This isn´t book related but….” Posts

 

Listen- I get it. A Facebook book group is a community and in a community members should support each other during good and bad times. But sometimes private posts are uncalled for, especially when a book group is focused on book promotion ONLY ( or any other specific book group ). There´s a place for private posts and that´s on the person´s private Facebook timeline. I´m not saying it´s terrible if a group member posts about their uncaring neighbor who mows his lawn when the baby´s trying to take a nap. I´m saying the topic isn´t necessarily appropriate for a book group.

Like I said- It isn´t world shattering. I just don´t understand why this needs to be in a book group.

 

 

#7  Questionable Members

 

From what I´ve seen there are a few types of FB book group members:

 

  • The actively supportive members 
  • The Like & Leave members 
  • The cliques/squads/ best of best group buddies members
  • The hypersensitive bunch
  • The Alpha members with their platinum membership cards

 

Three out of the five group member types are most likely to also fall into the questionable member’s category.

What exactly is a questionable FB book group member, you ask? Well, these people make it their mission to make anything their problem. It´s possible that you can become their focus, their target. They will try to discuss you to the ground and tell you what a shitty person you are and how disgusting your opinion is. They will tell you how you hurt THEIR feelings even though you never knew they existed before.

They´re basically the FB book group mafia.

In the beginning, you hardly realize they´re there. But once triggered they´ll reveal themselves and they become very vocal and extremely illogical. What triggers these people? Anything can trigger the mob or a mobster. As soon as they don´t like whatever is posted or said in a group then that´s it – They get their shit lists out. They won´t hesitate to act as if a crime has been committed.

I´ve come to learn that these questionable members are scattered all over the place. Some aren´t as vicious as others. Some come in smaller groups and some are lonesome mobsters. It really depends on the person. Maybe they´re dealing with an offline private issue. Maybe they´re just frustrated and bored.

What I´ve also learned is: You gotta let special be special. And Facebook has way too much special going on. You can´t help the mob understand that you´re not a disgrace to mankind. You´re not a disgrace. They´re just angry people eating chips in front of their laptops. You don´t have to teach these people what the difference between an offensive comment and a diplomatic one is. They´ll only refuse to listen.

But you can remove yourself from a group and never have to deal with questionable members any further. Everything is always just a few clicks away, am I right?


 

Mind you- These weren´t the only experiences I´ve had during my active Facebook book group days. I´ve had the pleasure of being a member of some fabulous Facebook book groups in the past where the admins understood what it meant to be a leader and where the members understood the importance of online kindness.

Despite the positive sides, Facebook book groups have I don´t think I can overlook the fact that many of these groups are just playgrounds for people who have nothing better to do than to wait until they can explode.



 

If you so happen to be a member of an active and well functioning Facebook book group then I´m truly happy for you. It´s always a great feeling to know you´re surrounded by a positive community. As long as the FB book group works for you then all´s good. Keep being a FB book group supporter. ❤


 

What about you? Are you a member of a Facebook book group? Do you agree with my list? Do you disagree? Care to agree to disagree? Let me know your thoughts or share your own personal experiences. Let´s chat! ❤


 

Thank you for taking the time to read this post.

I hope you all have a wonderful day.

Don´t forget to be kind, stay kind and share the book love.

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Book Giveaway Winners

Hey everyone.

It´s Sunday. Meaning – It´s time to reveal the `winners` for my recent giveaway.

I´m going to keep this post as short and simple as possible ( because you´re all probably busy with being unproductive, which is totally acceptable and understandable ).

Some books from my recent giveaway have found new homes.

 

Congrats to

Rinas bookish blog for being the new owner of The Cruel Prince ♥

alwaysbooking for wanting to give `Vicious` a new home ♥

Livin´ That Savi Life for adopting `Hush, Hush`♥

 

Please make sure to check your emails or social media DMs within the next few days. ❤

 

Thank you, again. I hope you enjoy your new reads. Be sure to tag me if you read and ever get to post reviews of your new babies. I´m dying to know what you think ❤

There´s no better feeling than sharing the book love, y´all. Feel hugged.

Much love,

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Cleaning Out My Bookshelves & Giveaway

 

There comes a time in life when you just need to get rid of a few things. Stuff that´s been lying around in some dust covered corner for ages. Things you once admired but then forgotten about.

I do this. And I do this with books, too.

I know, I know. Shame on me for treating books as if they´re just objects. Things I can toss without another thought.

But I don´t toss books aside. The truth is- I just don´t want to keep books that weren´t fully my cup of tea. So, I give them away. Usually, I just give all my sorted out paperbacks to my bestie, Mirjam, but this time I had something else in mind.

Why not do a GIVEAWAY? An international one ( because I hate, yes, HATE when giveaways aren´t international ( you´re welcome to read my reasons for that here )

 

It´s time to share. It´s time to give. 

 

Let´s face it, books are expensive. Paperback prices from self published authors have gone up and hardly anyone can afford a hardcover these days. It´s best to just “pay it forward” and make someone happy, right?

And the best part? This giveaway is NOT your typical giveaway. No one has to participate in a game / quiz or answer questions to enter. The first to claim a book in the comments will receive said book. Voila! No strings attached.


Mandatory Info:

  • Paperback Giveaway ( +1 Hardcover )
  • Book Condition:                  Used, In good shape
  • Giveaway starts:                 Thursday, May 2nd, 2019
  • Giveaway ends:                   Saturday, May 4th, 2019
  • Winner announcement:    Sunday, May 5th, 2019
  • International Giveaway
  • Winner will be contacted via email or DM ( please include email addy or Twitter username along with the book you´d like to have in the comments below )
  • Unclaimed books will be given to the second in line for said book

 

And now for the books.

giveaway books

 

#1    Vicious – L. J. Shen ( Paperback )

Vicious give

Book Condition:    A crack in the spine, otherwise as good as new.

 

 

#2    Cinder & Ella – Kelly Oram  ( Paperback )

vicious give 3

Book Condition:    Immaculate

Genre:   Young Adult, Romance

 

 

#3    Love Song – Sophia Bennett  ( Paperback )

vicious give2

Book Condition:    Immaculate

Genre:    Young Adult, Romance, Rockstar

 

 

The Cruel Prince  ( Book #1 ) – Holly Black ( Hardcover )

Vicious give 4

Book Condition:    As good as new

Genre:   Fantasy, Young Adult

 

 

Hush, Hush ( Book #1 ) – Becca Fitzpatrick  ( Paperback )

vicious give 5

Book Condition:    Spine lightly cracked

Genre:    Fantasy, Young Adult, Romance

 


 

Remember: All you need to do is leave a comment with the book you´d like below. The first person to claim a book will receive said book.


 

On a kind note: If you aren´t already feel free to check out my other blog posts. Leave a like, leave a comment or do both and if you like what you see then feel free to follow.


 

Good luck. See you on Sunday. ♥

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Why I Don´t Join Book Blog Tours Anymore

Book blog tours- You either love them or dislike them. Either you participate in one or you don´t.

 

tour banner

 

There are many ways for an author to successfully promote their book but none are as effective as a virtual book blog tour. I´d even say it´s THE MOST idiot-proof way to get a reader´s attention. So many people hang around social media- Why not take advantage of that?

 

 

While I do believe book blog tours are a nice additional marketing tool for authors I can´t say I´m too impressed with how a book blog tour usually pans out for book bloggers. Sure, we can receive new followers along the way and might be able to form a bond with an author.  But if you take a long hard look at book blog tours you can tell that many MANY things are a little fishy. Things that stink to high heaven.

 

 

As it often is- One simply cannot speak for all book blog tours. But one can definitely speak for the majority of ´em ( in my case- I can speak for the tours for romance, YA, erotica, women´s fiction genres ).

You see – There are rules for a book blog tour. Rules I often never agreed with because most of them made no sense to me. As a book blogger who treats this whole thing as a hobby ( and who knows what can be gained in the business ), I never felt at home with all the restrictions and rules that were set out. Now, I dont´disagree with rules. In some areas of life, the rules are very much needed. But none of the hobbies I actively live out during the day have rules. Why should a book blog tour have them? Why should book blogging, in general, have rules?

Alas, the rules of book blog tours were what made me whisper “fuck this shit. I need a drink.” to my laptop.

 

 

Rule #1     

Don´t Forward The ARC 

I know there are some airheads who think it´s acceptable to receive an ARC and then pass it on to their friends/family/ fellow bloggers. These people need to be reminded of what an ARC is and how to handle them. I´m not mad about this rule. I´m just annoyed that it still has to be mentioned. Bloggers should KNOW by now how harmful it is for an author if their book gets passed around. This annoys me. But not as much as the way some authors & book promo people go about this whole ARC business.

Look, I get it. By clicking the box on the Google doc form I agree to not forward the ARC to a third party. But what´s stopping the next book blogger from doing it anyway, you know? This is not me condoning piracy or anything. All I´m saying is that there are some tech-savvy bastards out there. By agreeing to not do so by clicking a checkbox is not preventing this from happening. Use an anti-theft ebook software, secure your files by restricting certain actions, send a pdf then delete it after it´s been read. There are ways to make life hard for someone who wants to share an ARC.

My advice for authors offering ARCs would be: Create a checkbox option that says-

 

“I understand that this ARC is protected by ____ and cannot be forwarded to a third party.”

 

That is something I will take seriously. It´s a statement that the book has been protected and can´t be shared. Voila!

Regardless of my feelings towards this check box clicking agreement, I have never and would never forward an ARC. Because I don´t have time for this shit. Read / review / move the fuck on.

 

 

 

Rule #2   

Promote The Book. Not Your Review.

 

Pretty simple, right? You sign up and request to review the book that´s being promoted. Then you write a review and promote the book. Wrong. Quite often your opinion will be sorted out before you even manage to write a review for the damn book.

 

“Please contact us if you feel you aren´t able to rate this book with 3 or more stars. We will make sure to give you a new assignment.”

 

In other words- My opinion is only wanted when it´s dripping with praises. Gottcha. Wait, what?!

I´m seeing this issue with a black and white mindset. There´s a high demand for reviews in the book world. And authors need reviews in order to get sales going. So, when an author kindly provides me with an ARC for their book in exchange for a review, and I type up a 2-star review because that´s how I felt about said ARC… it´s not wanted?! Well, screw that!  Authors aren´t allowed to be picky. Of course, I understand the dynamics of book promotions and that you can´t necessarily promote a book with a 2-star review. The whole idea of a book blog tour is to promote an author and their book, right? But what if I told you that a 2-star review isn´t necessarily harmful? This is something many need to wrap their heads around. 1 star, 2 stars, 3 stars… They´re generalized subjective opinions. It may be an opinion no one else will share.

A book blogger is then asked to not publish the review during the tour. Okay. So, basically, the author has saved themselves from a lesser review…. for the time being. Because they´re not interested in your opinion. They´re interested in praises and future sales. They´re interested in rainbows and unicorns.

I used to hate this so much. Most of the time I was able to give good book ratings for blog tour books. But when I did stumble upon a 2 star read, and I was asked to swap my assignment for something less “harmful for the author” I stepped away from the tour then waited until the tour was over and published my 2-star review for those same book days later.

My point is: Authors and book promo sites can´t avoid a book receiving a less than stellar rating. It´ll happen one way or another. Seeing a book blog tour with shining reviews looks unrealistic.

“Promote the book, not your opinion.” Yes, yes. My bad for misunderstanding that this is a shower the author / the book with praises tour instead of a book blog tour. How unthoughtful of me.

 

 

 

Rule #3   

Publish Your Post On Time. Preferably At An Impossible Time.

There´s a brilliant way to get on a book promo site´s shitlist- Not posting your scheduled post on time.

Whether it´s because you´ve posted too early or because you´ve posted way too late ( or not at all because you´re a ditz that has a memory of a goldfish )… You will most likely not win any plus points on this subject. Unless you´ve been sitting at your Mimaw´s death bed, your other excuses might not be accepted. Because there´s always the pre-scheduling option.

Yes, that small button that allows you to pre-schedule a blog tour post can make your life so easy. But not all book bloggers schedule ahead. Why? Because a book spotlight isn´t a life or death situation for many bloggers. And why is that? Because many of us treat this as our hobby. Some book bloggers can´t give their hobby the attention it needs.

Still, book promo sites and authors demand to see posts go up at a certain time. For whatever reason, it doesn´t make sense.

I belonged to the people who pre-scheduled blog posts. But on a few occasions, I slipped. I simply forgot about a blog tour because of a rough week at work or having to deal with real-life issues. Sometimes I forgot about a blog tour because friends dropped my unannounced with cheese and a bottle of rosé.

And because of the few times, I slipped I received shit from the other end.

 

“You will be removed from our A-List. “

“I asked for all posts to go up at 7 EST.”

 

( insert appalled tone ) Yes, and I deeply apologize for holding my daughter´s hair back last night while she hung over the toilet screaming “I´m dying” as she puked the life out of her tiny body. Next time I´ll just call the babysitter. Would that put me back on your A-List?

My point is:  I understand how important a book blog tour is for an author AND book promo people. I´m aware of how much authors pay for marketing geniuses to promote their work. I understand the need to make dreams come true.  What I don´t accept is how egotistical people are.  This is my hobby. We had an agreement. I clearly wasn´t able to meet the standards. This is not the end of the world. This can be fixed.  I´m not getting paid for any of this. Shit happens and when you have kids shit happens more often than not. Why this is not accepted is beyond me.

Mind you- This isn´t always the case. Some promo sites are forgiving and understanding when reality demands our attention. But many others aren´t forgiving. And I´ve simply had enough of this.

 

 

 

Rule #4   

The More Participants, The Better

 

Yes, yes. * waves off * We know. The more people who partake in a book blog tour the better. Because this means when many book bloggers post about a book the further the book will travel. And that means more exposure. A total win for an author! They´re getting their money´s worth and maybe earning a buck or two. It´s their dream to see their book make it´s rounds, collecting feedback from all corners.

 

 

There´s a small yet crucial problem with this. And it has all to do with the package an author picks. Say an author wants exposure for their book. They want to have a book blog tour done but only pick the simple book spotlight package. This book package offers a small feature for the book including an even smaller book info slip with social media & purchase links. Not a terrible choice but when this option is offered and 150 book bloggers sign up for this option there´s a huge chance people will be seeing this post for longer than expected. This works in favor of the author, sure. But it´s annoying, especially when these 150 book bloggers follow each other. And the problem with this is: We see the same post over and over again without having the option to see anything else that might spark our / a followers interest in that book. And worse? When the publication date is months away. Doing a book tour for a new release months before it hits the market isn´t the wisest choice. People tend to forget shit or become less interested when they know the book release is in 3 months.

But hey, at least people got to see the book, right?

This has bugged me for a long time. You get a book shoved down your throat months before it even releases.

 

 

 

Rule #5   

Don´t Expect A Thank You

I admit this was what drove me to swear off book blog tours- The lack of recognition. The fact that book blog tours are sometimes ungrateful for a book blogger. I really don´t know how often I need to repeat this, but… Book bloggers are hard-working minions who will bend over backward for an author.  A simple Thank You has never killed anyone. I am not aware of any deaths of authors after they´ve expressed their gratitude towards a book blogger. In my opinion, the least an author could do is:

  • Visit the book bloggers blog and leave a comment
  • Follow the book bloggers blog
  • Thank them privately or publicly

I´ve witnessed authors who boldly claimed it wasn´t their job to thank a book blogger. It should be the book promo people who need to send out the thank you emails, simply because these people have been paid to do the job. To be honest- Almost all book promo people are well-mannered and thank all the book bloggers who participated in their tours. Book bloggers acknowledge that but wouldn´t it be nicer is the authors themselves took 5 minutes out of their busy, creative schedules to contact the bloggers personally?

It´s not about showering a book blogger with love. A book blog tour is about putting the author in a bright light, making them stand out so people will recognize them / their book. A book blog tour isn´t about a book blogger. We´re just needed to help. Without book bloggers, there are no book blog tours.

Every book blogger I know is starving for recognition and are often satisfied with a simple Thank You. How hard is it to say two words? It´s not and many authors who don´t get in touch with the people who promoted their books should be ashamed of themselves.

Many might not care about this. But I care. We´re living in a world where kindness is being taken for granted.

 

“They´re book bloggers. That´s what they do.” 

 

Yes, but there´s more to it than just click click, publish.

Many authors/publishers won´t bother with a thank you. A few make it a point to thank the invisible helpers.

 


 

I guess you can say book blog tours have pissed me off. That´s not entirely true. I once believed book blog tours were a brilliant way for authors to receive recognition. Now, after having seen so much go down with blog tours, I can say I´m not interested in this part of the business anymore. Because a writer isn´t the only person who exists. the 20 – 150 book bloggers promoting the author exist as well.

I write reviews under my own terms. I publish posts when I decide. I promote when the time is right for me.

As for the benefits of receiving early ARCs… The euphoria stage has passed and I´ve become a patient woman. I don´t have to read a book months before release. I have time.


 

What do you think about book blog tours? Do you participate in them? Do you enjoy being a part of a virtual book tour? Let´s chat ❤

 


 

Thank you so much for reading this post. I hope you enjoyed and that you were able to see my reasons for removing myself from book tours. ( if not, that´s fine. You´re forgiven )

Much love,

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