Sunday, July 23, 2017
Sharing Joy: What is Old is New Again and I Get a Bit Mushy
I've been reflective in the past 24 hours more so than others. Although this subject has been on the tip of my tongue for days, I've been searching for the words for weeks now to express this feeling I have. I think I've found them. So I hope you aren't surprised by this mushy post as my normal sarcasm is put to the side for a bit.
I hope each of my followers has taken the time to read my interview with Panda & Boodle. Not only was it fun to do, but it was inspired by a conversation with author. She wanted to genuinely know what this new BuzzFeed Community activity was about. Because let's face it: sometimes it's hard to define what is just a promotion campaign versus not. If you look out on the interweb, you'll see such promotions: Hottest Beach Reads - sponsored by Book Bub. I am no way knocking these type of promotions. As the author I conversed with stated, it's HARD - very HARD to get your book noticed in a sea of never ending offerings. These have their place in a needed way.
There is also promotion from bloggers to get their blogs noticed. If all you publish is cover reveal, review tour, giveaway...and no other content, it's difficult to stay noticed in the sea of those readers just scrolling by. You've got to post relevant and interesting posts once in awhile to break up the monotony of book promo posting. See my list of blogs I follow - the reason I do is they all keep me engaged as a reader. In order to 'mix it up' what you see from most blogs is a 'Must Read 2017' or 'Summer Reading List' to keep content fresh. Again, these are book lists that are normally relevant in the now.
Before I continue, I'd like you to look at our last list: Ghosts and Angels: Romances We Love That Will Have You Saying "Ditto". What I'd like you to pay careful observation to is the publication dates. My book friends aren't limiting their recommendations to what is popular now. We give them a survey topic and they get to spend time like Ron to reminisce over their libraries on the books they want to share.
Like the idea of the song, a book can inspire you to connect with an event or a person to remember fondly. But reminiscing over a book, its like returning to an old friendship when you think about the characters and their journey. When we are doing our surveys, this magic, this recall is what happens. And we all feel warm and delighted again.
There is this feeling I get after we hit publish on a list. We love seeing readers react to our suggestions and sharing. I personally enjoy reading the comments and other readers suggestions. But this isn't what hits me in the feels. It's when we see a delighted response from an author.
Not in the 'Oh we've been noticed by the cool kid'. Nope, it's when an author says, "Thank you for mentioning my book 'X'. I'm stunned and smiling like mad right now." That author quote is from a book was published in 2013. There is no active promos. Nope, just a genuine '...recommend this book because...' from our book friends. And that reaction from the authors that they recognize we don't just love the right now, but we love and recommend a wonderful reading memory. It's this reaction - happiness in recognizing a worthy story - gets me grinning.
I think as book bloggers and fans we forget, and we often concentrate on the hot-right-now. Every day there are new readers that haven't seen or heard of these fantastic reads. These new readers may find by going through a catalog, but maybe there is a bit of hesitation on their part to click because we aren't talking about it. I guess what I hope is that readers - both old and new to the genre - find some really enjoyable entertainment with our lists. Our themes may run current with what is happening such as LoveIsLoveIsLove for Pride Month. However, our content will stay authentic to the recommendations of our book friends.