The Art Of `Live And Let Live` ( In The Book Blog Community)

” But the world is getting worse and I blame the beginning of it´s demise on social media.”

– Ricky Gervais

 

I bet you saw this one coming, didn’t ya? The Art Of `Live And Let live`. Folks, this is exactly what it is. A post about living and leaving others alone.

This is not a click bait.. For the record: I’m not a click bait book blogger so there will be none of that here.

Normally, I´d go ahead and give you a generalized post on my thoughts regarding the topic at hand. I´d throw in some pros and cons and provide some real examples and include my personal opinion. Not this time. I´ve something else in mind.

Stay factual. Stay realistic. Stay diplomatic. Try to stay neutral. That´s what I try to aim for when typing up my posts. For most of the time I reach my own standards.   I don´t blog about books and book related topics to unleash hell onto others for the sake of personal pleasure. Why am I even telling you all this?

Well, something happened today. Something that had shocked me. I spotted a tweet on Twitter that hit close to home.  And the weird part? It was about my blog post and what it did for other people.

Initially, I had not planned on publishing a post over the weekend. Now I feel like one has to go up. For many of you, this might sound so petty. So annoying.  Trust me- I´m just as annoyed. Please bear with me, dear annoyed non participants. My fingers are crossed that this´ll find an end sooner than later. I have just as much important shit to do.

There has been talk regarding my blog posts. Mind you- this isn´t the first time someone disagreed with one of my posts. But it´s the first time I´m seeing a complaint done behind my back.

My life motto is

`Live and let live.`

 

Unfortunately, this concept is totally alien for many people, It´s easy to live and let live. It´s apparently more fun not to. This also applies for book blogging. Most of the time the things I see happening in the book community are fairly harmless ( by harmless I mean things that don´t have people sobbing in the fetus position at night ). A little bitching here, and a lot of nagging there. Most of the time I find this really great. Opinions are what get conversations rolling. You have an opinion on a topic and share it, even welcome other opinions? I´m in! What I don´t like is when things become personal.

By `live and let live`I´m saying accept what others do and move on. Respect a book bloggers opinion and continue with life as it was.

 

`Live and let live.`

 

Yeah. The offended book committee doesn´t share my life philosophy. They say they do but they don´t.  Instead, these people make it their mission to keep my name within their radars. Because they were offended by one of my posts.
Which posts, you ask? What could be so awful that have people feeling all sorts of uncomfortable? Even feeling personally attacked?

 

The Art Of Pointing Fingers At Book Bloggers

Excuse me for not being a friend of finger pointing at book bloggers. You don´t post links from a book blogger and bash them in a group because you´re fucking unhappy. Have you no common sense?

A post about how unnecessary I feel it is to feel offended by the fakeness of Instagram. My personal opinion on this subject aside- I was told my post offended people. No one cared about my opinion. And it was a positive opinion. I was pro `live and let live`.

Here´s what happened: I was a new member of a Facebook book group and shared a post of mine. Keep in mind that I had been a member for only a short period of time before I shared a link to one of my blog posts. The first comment I received was from the admin.

Anne Carter
Enter a caption

anna2

 
” Just read some fucking books.” A sad response from someone I had only exchanged a few words with in a previous post ( she was moody there as well ). Practically a stranger. So, this is how we speak with group members now? I´m appalled by this attitude and behavior.  We´re a book blog community. You can dislike my post but you are not allowed to be uncivilized. My post was clean. I had an opinion. Take it or leave it. Don´t tell me my post was offensive when in reality, you just didn´t like it. There´s a difference. See the difference.

I will not lie- this has been my top 2019 post so far. I´ve had dream worthy views ( and still counting ). I´m pretty sure the majority of the views on this post had been from the offended committee. Because, how dare I talk about a subject and publish my link in a group for book bloggers! Shame on me for trying to be a part of a group.

After that I left the group. Because I´m not stupid. Once an attitude, twice an attitude.. I´m not sticking around for round 3. So, I left. I dusted my hands off and moved on. Best decision I had in a long shot. Unfortunately for me, one group member followed me to my blog and thought it would be wise to continue what I ended in the group  underneath one of my blog posts. One person hunted me down to give me a piece of her mind. Keep in mind- That pilgrim had her little moment in the group I posted my link in. She wasn´t done, though.

 

 

Turns out, I have no empathy because I don´t care about the feelings of others. My post was “harmful”. No, it wasn´t. This discussion was long done for me before the loyal book pilgrim followed me to my blog.

 

 

So, people who are offended by posts are allowed to post about their feelings and I am supposed to sit back and accept wordlessly? No. That´s wrong on so many levels.

 

Then there´s this gem of mine that has caused more than just a stir. This time more people were involved. This is the Twitter post I spotted. The post about my post. A fellow book blogger defended me on her Twitter page and ended up being blocked. Why? Because I published a post about

Why I Don´t Join Book Blog Tours Anymore

The title says exactly what´s in this post. I reveal the reasons why I don´t participate in book blog tours anymore. How can this be misunderstood for anything else? And this had the bush drums going in a book blogger group. Not sure if I should laugh, cry, feel flattered, be shocked…

The reasons have stemmed from my personal experiences. Things that have occurred in the span of my 10 year book blogging career. I have not, and will not reveal the names of these book tour organizers because they´ve retired 2 – 5  years ago.

Why has this post about my not participating in blog tours been written? What was my motive? Do I need one? No. But I´ll amuse everyone anyway. It felt right to share my experiences. I wanted to share my stuff and maybe help others even if it´s by showing them that they aren´t alone with this. What´s wrong with that? Should I have not posted about why blog tours don´t work for ME anymore? Should I have worded the whole thing differently just to have the approval of the offended party? No can do. That would go against my book blog religion.

 

“Some people just don´t care.”

Here´s something to think about:

What would happen ( after having read an experience post of mine ) if the offended person just sat down and asked themselves how this could have happened to a book blogger? The post is open for discussion. Why not get in touch and ask for details. Ask about specifics instead of feeling offended. Because that´s how it looks like from my end of the stick. “I´m offended. I feel attacked.” When it reality my post was never about others. Just me. What is there to feel offended about? Unless these people felt offended on my behalf. Which I highly doubt.

My experiences are my personal facts. You can have your opinion on my opinion but you can´t feel offended by something I´ve dealt with. That´s ridiculous. Unless you´re offended on my behalf. I still doubt that.

 

To sum this whole thing up:

Believe it or not- I wouldn´t publish anything I don´t like. Should someone feel offended by whatever banal post I deem worthy of publishing then there´s always the option of ignoring me.

It´s simple. If you´re not convinced then try it out for yourselves. It works wonders for me.

People, if you are not able to live and let live then at least try! Try for the sake of peace. You can have a good rant. Make a post out of the topic you want to rant about. Ranting is healthy. The behavior I´ve been unofficially subjected to ( because, technically, I haven´t seen the post in the actual Facebook group. Just saw the tweet and was informed by a blogger friend )  is a low form of confrontation. Behind my back. A questionable act against someone who can´t defend themselves because they´re not in the group anymore.

Here´s another thing to consider:

It was clear the person and I weren´t able to meet eye to eye from the start ( although I tried ). The most logical thing to do would be if both went on our merry ways. I did that. The other person didn´t. The fact that this person has been checking on my posts tells me the person is just waiting for something to feel offended about.

The person who targeted my post stated she had planned  to comment on my post at first. She didn´t. I´m now grateful she decided against it. God knows how many more gray hairs I would have gained after a chitchat.

I am not interested in a discussion with this person anymore. Not now, not ever. Should this person reach out to me for whatever reason I will not react. I´ve reacted enough already. The offended parade is officially over. It´s time to move on.

Here´s a kind reminder for the future book blog community: Stop being fucking dicks.

And start working on social skills. Learn how to agree to disagree. Learn how to respect opinions. Learn to live and let live.

 

On a side note:

I´d like to give a huge hug to the person who posted that tweet. She didn´t tag me and I will not tag her because she has been through enough already by defending my blog post and herself.  And of course a Thank You to the person who sent me the screenshot via DM. Thank you. This is what book blogging should be about. Helping each other and standing up for one another. Because what hurts one of us can hurt another book blogger if we keep silent. Thank you, both.

 

On another side note: 

No book blogger should ever stay silent when they feel they´ve been wronged. Speak up. And if you´re not the type then get in touch with a fellow blogger. We don´t just write reviews. We´re a community.

This has been a long post. Much longer than I wanted it to be. My first thought was to dismiss this whole idea of standing up for myself. But I couldn´t. I could be helping others. I want to help others.

What I don´t want it to approach this subject ever again. It´s done. The joke is around the corner. It´s time to read and review and do other fun shit.

Thank you for taking the time to read this. If you belong to the people who were offended by my posts then do yourselves a favor- Don´t bother commenting. I don´t appreciate wasting my time discussing my crystal clear posts with you. I am not interested.

If you´ve been through the same situation or know someone who has dealt with something similar.. Feel free to share. I´d be more than happy to chat. ❤

 

Much love and don´t forget to share the book love,

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Thank The Books It´s Friday

People. PEOPLE! You will not believe what a week I´ve had. More the reason to welcome Mr. Thank Fuck squirrel.

squirrel fuck

It´s friday. A day to sit back and relax. Or in my case- sit back and make plans.

Yes. Aside from the virtual book blog drama that has decided to involve me without me knowing I took it upon myself to book a spontaneous mini vacation. 4 days London, baby! I just have 1 more week to go before Easter break for the kids begins and we´re off. I´m taking the family with me. Hubby, kids…. We´re all going and I am SO looking forward to some much needed time off from my surroundings. And the book shopping! Lord have mercy, I´m gonna be in a financial mess when I get home.

If you happen to see a short blonde american with a loud voice in a Waterstones then feel free to approach me. I might scream because I´m super jumpy and a natural chicken shit but that´ll pass. 🙂 I´ll buy you a coffee and make up for it. 🙂

What I´m looking forward to most is meeting up with my bestie Lindsey also known as the award winning author of Hedoschism. It´ll be so good to see her in person again and give her ( and the family ) a huge hug. ❤

As for the book blogging. I´ve mentioned above that my week has been going fairly well until I heard about what´s being said about my blog posts behind my back.

Something as banal as my previous post has evoked strong feelings from some people. I´m not sure I have enough energy to care ( that´s not true. I have a post about that topic already in the works ). Let´s just say that it´s beyond me why anyone would feel offended by my personal experiences. These people must love me to bits for keeping me on their radars or they hate me and have made me their target. Did I mention I´m going on a vacation? I did? Okay, I´ll just remind you again.

So yes. It´s been an eventful week.

As for the bookish part:

I´ve had an equally successful week. But having a look at some other blogs I feel like I´ve achieved nothing at all. The 3 books I´ve managed to read in April are nothing compared to what others have read. I feel major book envy right now. Still, I´m holding in there.

As of late I´ve managed to start and finish ( yes, I know. It´s weird I managed to do both ) the following:

The Silver Swan ( Elite Kings Club #1 ) – Amo Jones

Sparrow – L.J. Shen

Before We Were Strangers – Renée Carlino

Reviews for these gems will be up and about very soon so keep your eyes open.

Thankfully, the month isn´t over yet and I have more than enough time to read some other long forgotten masterpieces that have been collecting dust on my bookshelves.

Let´s completely ignore the ebook collection that´s growing faster than the tomato seeds I just planted.

That´s about it for this week.

Other than spending time checking my travel check lists there will be loads of Netflix while imitating lazy cats. Drum roll for the cat gif parade!

Me on a Friday
Me on Saturday
Me on Sunday

You´re very welcome. So, as you can see, my life is boring.

What are your plans for the weekend? What books will you be reading / finishing? Let me know in the comments below so I can envy you! ❤ Let me be a part of your glorious, eventful life.

Have a safe weekend, everyone. Feel hugged and loved. Share the book love.

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8 Reasons Why I´m Saying Good-Bye To Instagram

Post Inspired By:  Jason Journals


 

Take a pic. Take more than one pic. Spend 5 minutes – 1 hour getting the right angle and chasing after the right lighting.

Use no filters. Use all filters. Spend even more time trying to get the picture perfect shot to present to your friends, family, followers, fellow bloggers and authors. Because you want to show your latest creation. And before you know it you´ve spent the better half of your afternoon for one pic.

Does this sound familiar? It probably does.

I´m talking about Instagram. The app that has brought me joy, and at the same time, has made my life miserable. For an unreasonable time I´ve been thinking about just throwing the towel and deleting Instagram. It wasn´t until I stumbled upon Jason´s   @ Jason Journals own post about deleting his Instagram account that helped me make me next move. Because I was an unhappy Instagrammer / Bookstagrammer.

Those who follow me on Instagram already know I´ve used the app for blog purposes only. I think I posted a private pic or two, but that was it. Every pic of mine was dedicated to books, reading books and… promoting books. Because that´s what a book blogger does, right?

Yes, well… I´ve learned there are a few ways to utilize Instagram as a book blogger.

 

  •  Using The App As A Branch Blog

Many book bloggers will have their main blog and use other social media platforms as a way of promoting themselves / their main blog. A branch blog can also be seen as an extension blog. This will gain new followers who don´t necessarily want to visit a main blog.

 

  •    Using The App As Their Main Blog

There are quite a few book bloggers who´ve decided against the traditional way of blogging via blog and just picked a social media to get their thoughts / opinions across.

 

  •   Using The App Because It Belongs To Blogger Etiquette

Because what type of blogger are you if your face isn´t plastered all over the place?

 

  •   Using The App For The Fun Of It

These bloggers just want to share their latest reads and connect with others.

 

This is all great and dandy. There is absolutely nothing wrong with whatever a bookstagrammer does. Promote a book / an author… Show off your current read… Have fun and go wild with your creativity.  Me? I think I´ve had enough.

 

I definitely used Instagram as a branch blog and because I thought I´d dabble in a little fun in between all the review writing and discussion posts. Don´t get me wrong, I did have fun. Sadly enough I spent the majority of my time being more frustrated and feeling let down than anything else. Why? I´m glad you asked.


 

#1   Being A Bookstagrammer Is Time Consuming

It is. A simple fact no one can deny. Time will never be on anyones side if they have smaller children, have a job and a social life. It´s about priorities and mine prevent me from spending loads of time editing pictures and coming up with decent captions. I just feel like I´m wasting my time.

 

 

#2    The Ads

This is something I truly don´t care for, yet 2/3 of my feed is littered with ads. I have to literally click the search box and type in a certain bookstagrammers name in order to see what they´ve posted. Everything else is about make-up, hair products, and hotel recommendations. I looked up make-up once in my life and Instagram thinks I need a shit load of war paint to brighten my day. No. I don´t want to see a make-up ad. I want to see what people posted.

 

 

 

#3   Creativity Drowns On Instagram

This is the saddest part of being a bookstagrammer. There are countless blogs uploading one brilliant feature after another and what happens? They drown. Their work drowns. If you don´t hashtag the shit out of your pics and tag the right people then you might get seen by 40 others if you´re lucky. This has nothing to do with the creativity or the ability to engage a following. This has everything to do with the app itself. Sure, Instagram is user friendly and has cool features. But what are those things worth when you drown before you even have a chance?

 

 

#4    The Algorithm

Another thing I don´t care for. It´s a little frustrating when I know my friend, who lives two streets down, just uploaded a pic of her dog and I see it two days later. Not to forget my own posts. Since I blog books on Instagram the whole purpose of my blogging on Instragram is to reach an audience. That can´t happen if I slip down the Insta – feed chain. I´ve heard one bookstagrammer say there´s a way to beat the algorithm. I honest to God do not want to invest my time with this anymore than I already have.

 

 

#5    Competition

I´m competitve but in a positive way. A little competition in the book blog world has never bothered me because I see my fellow book bloggers as creative people with unique styles. I can´t reach their waters and they can´t reach mine. But bookstagrammers are becoming vicious beasts. Since Instagram is about showing off creativity, many book bloggers are desperate and will do all sorts of things to get noticed, for example: Taking an idea without giving credit to the original source.

 

 

#6    Seeing Repetitive Content

It´s truly a great feeling once you´ve found “your book”. The one story that has emotionally touched you in more than one way. I get it. I´ve been there before, myself, and can understand the urge to want to tell the whole world about the awesome book you´ve read. But there´s a fine line between recommending a book and forcefully shoving it down someone´s throat. This happens in form of a bookstagrammer uploading a million features for one book, probably until the next book in that series is published which can take up to a few months.

I. Can´t. Take. It. Anymore.

It bores me shitless to see 1 book 800 times. I also get annoyed when I see 500 candle features.

 

 

#7    My Age

I´m not sure what the average age for Instagram is but I´m pretty sure I´m far from it. Age has never been a problem for me. But sometimes an age gap can be annoying. I´ve been in a few Instagram book groups where I was the oldest. THE oldest, bordering on granny age with my 37 in a group of 16-18 year olds. All´s fine until they find out my age.

“Omg, I never knew!”    Yes, I never knew I´d get this far, either. Yet, here I am.

“Wow, that´s an impressive age.”    I think 90 is an impressive age. Not 37.

“That is OLD.”   Yes, in your world I already have one foot in my grave.

“You´r generation is known for not having the right kind of empathy.” And with 16 you´ve suddenly become an expert on generation traits and empathy levels?

“Omg, you have kids?!”    Yes, and I´m still alive. Who´d have thought?

These remarks don´t come from a negative place. I know these younger bloggers can´t really wrap their heads around being a 37 year old. I´m not offended by this. Quite the opposite.  But it does get annoying after a while.

Age becomes a problem if you make it one. I don´t make it one. Others often unintentionally do. I don´t appreciate this happening on an app that´s supposed to be fun.

 

 

#8    Finding Something To Say

I consider myself a wordy person. I have an average vocabulary. But I cannot come up with a caption to include with my pictures. Why? No clue. It´s like my brain does an automatic shut down. And because I struggle with a caption I thought I´d just upload a pic and be done with it. I received a PM on Instagram from someone kindly reminding me I had to include a caption. * sigh *

 

 

#9    Unwanted Tips From Bookstagrammers

This is the only point that pisses me off- The constant tips from fellow bloggers. Tips I never asked for in the  first place.

I received quite a few free of charge tips on how to clean up my pictures and how to gain followers.

Look, 1) I never asked.   2) I never said I disliked my pics. I actually like what I upload.    3) I never complained about not having a large following.

“You have to include yourself in the follow trains.”

“You´re not promoting the right books.” 

“You´re using the wrong filters.” 

And I´m sitting here thinking about what gave these people the impression that I need help when I never asked for help. Why? WHY?

 



 

To sum this up: Using Instagram for book blogging purposes is not an option for me anymore. It was fun. It was creative. But I´ve lost interest because of feeling pressured and frustrated. Now I feel lighter knowing I have one less social media to tackle.

It´s time to bid the app a farewell. But before I go off and delete my account I´d like to share my favorite features from my 3 year Instagram journey. Y´all ready?

 


 

 

Do you use Instagram? Do you still have an account? How are you holding up? Let´s chat ❤


 

Thank you for reading. I hope you have a wonderful day.

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Thank The Books It´s Friday

Friday! I´ve missed you something fierce! Before we carry on we need to give Chuck the Thank Fuck Friday Squirrel some love.

 

squirrel fuck

 

It´s been one of those eventful weeks, my bookish Padawans. To be honest- I haven´t had a schedule this packed in a long while. From Monday till this very day… I´ve been swamped with work, appointments, and other things that make me hate being an adult.

The only thing ( aside from reading ) that has brough me joy was watching Norsemen on Netflix.

 

norsemen

 

I have a ritual at night before I go to bed: Watch a history documentary or a documentary on Australians 72 most deadliest animals ( just to inform myself on what I´ll be missing out on while visiting countries that don´t have deadly animals ). I was in a history mood and couldn´t find anything interesting on Sky ( for those who don´t know what Sky is: It´s like Netflix just more organized ) So I found what I thought would be a documentary on Vikings. I received more than just a docu. . So hilarious. So weird. So my kind of humor. They say Norsemen is Norways finest export. I agree. The slaves are by far my favorite characters. If you haven´t already I really recommend watching this series. It´s so SO damn funny.

 

 

So what else have I done this week besides run around like a headless chicken? Aah, yes. I caught up on some reading. March is a birthday month for my social circle so I can´t get too invested in any heavy reading. Right now I decided to give an easy romance my attention. The lady from my preferred bookstore recommended this “light” 374 page chick – lit romance.

I owe you one

 

She said `I Owe You One` by Sophie Kinsella is a perfect quick read for in between reads. PERFECT! I´m currently on page 69 and can´t say I have any complaints yet. It´s sweet and has a great pace. I´m still suspicious, though. Can´t really trust books these days, can we? Fingers crossed this one won´t be another let down.

 

 

As for the blogging bit- I´ve been super productive!

 


Somewhere between going to the dentist, doing school projects, reading, working, etc… I´ve managed to get some blogging done, as well. And not just working on my own stuff but also going through my WordPress Reader! Yippie! I even discovered new blogs.

** sigh ** It truly feels good to be productive.

 

 

Since it´s been a busy week I decided to do nothing this weekend. No plans. No visiting anyone. Nothing. Just spend my days in ratty sweats with the tv remote control in my death grip.

 

 

Many might find this awful but for me, there´s nothing more interesting than having a stay in weekend. ❤ I live for these moments.

 

What about you? What are your plans for the weekend? What will you be reading? Are you going out? Let me know in the comments below!

 

That´s about it, folks. Time to get my sweats ready because I have a few hours left before the true laziness begins!

Wishing everyone a safe and wonderful time. See you all on Monday!

Much love,

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Mr. Male Protagonist, Why Do You Growl?

Romance readers will know about this. Erotica fans are familiar with it. Even Young Adult lovers have seen this occasionally in their beloved innocent books.

 

Growling male protagonists

 

A reaction from a male character in fiction novels triggered mostly by jealousy and / or approval.  But why?

Let´s do a quick run down on living beings that growl

 

  • animals

 

That´s it. Growling is a low, guttural vocalization produced by predatory animals as an aggressive warning but can also be found in other contexts such as playful behaviors or mating ( thanks Wiki * wink * )

So, why are we reading about CEOs, lumberjacks, bad boys and the hot quarterbacks in contemp. romance / young adult / erotica novels growling when it´s clearing an animalistic behaviorism?

 

 

(Warning: Interesting short fun fact ahead)

If you hadn´t known already, there are similarities between human body language and animal behavior. It´s actually interesting to know how human body language resembles the non verbal communication of animals. We can be cocky like cats, we signal aggression like dogs by baring our teeth and we gesture like apes. ( end of fun fact )

And this is okay. To describe a man´s movement by comparing him to a panther isn´t a problem. Sounding like a panther is.

Do we growl? Like actually growl? And what has authors thinking growling is an acceptable reaction? And why is it only male characters who growl?

I´m one of those readers who can get completely lost in a book. Once I´m invested then that´s it- I´m all in. I´m also the type that reads and fails to see someone else´s logic no matter how poetic it may be.

 

“He let out a growl…”

 

A line that has come up in almost all of my novels that have territorial Heroes. Aah, that word: Territorial. Another word that´s often associated with male protagonists. They are territorial. Sure. Why the hell not, right? It´s supposedly hot to read about a guy growling his way in to a woman´s knickers.

10 years, people…. I´ve spent 10 years of questioning this in romance novels and have only recently asked myself what I would do if a male would growl near me. Would this even happen in real life?

 

My first thought and facial expression would be, without a doubt, this, should a man ever growl in public:

 

The thought alone of the husbutt growling his approval when seeing me in a dress would definitely earn him this reaction from me:

 

And should he ever growl because he´s jealous then I might have to use physical education:

 

This is not to say that growling should be banned from all modern romance literature. Growling works beautifully for fictional characters in paranormal romances and fantasy novels or (!!!) for contemporary romances that involve male characters who´ve once been feral children that have had been forced by nature to adapt to wildlife and animals- Technically, they´re allowed to growl.

“I heard a low threatening growl from somewhere in the room. It was him.”

 

Me when I read that line in a contemp. romance novel

 

So, my question is:

Mr. Male Protagonist,

Why do you growl? Why not just smile with pride, use a great comeback line,.. or how about moaning? If you´re going to do something during your less animalistic sex then you shouldn´t growl.


QUESTION Of The Day:

Am I alone with my thoughts? Do men these days growl? Have you ever heard of a female character in novels growl? What are your thoughts? Does a growling male protagonist bother you? What do you think about growling in general?

Feel free to leave any thoughts in the comments below. ❤