I thought I’d write a post commemorating the year 2012 at The Book Stop. It’s been 2 and a half years since I started this blog, and I wanted to think a little bit about what I’ve done this year and where the blog is going.
First, here’s what I read and reviewed:
- Books read in 2012: 64
- Books reviewed in 2012: 51
Books reviewed by genre:
- Classic literature: 8
- Contemporary fiction: 10
- Fantasy, paranormal, steampunk: 11
- Historical fiction: 14
- Science fiction: 5
- Nonfiction: 2
- Children/Young Adult: 8
- Part of a Series: 12
- Review requests, ARCs or NetGalleys: 14
Some things I’m proud of in the last year:
- New followers: The Book Stop is a small blog and I’ve never expected otherwise. But a steady stream of new followers this year made me very happy. I know that followers aren’t necessarily readers. But I’m still appreciative every time I get a new follower or a “like” or a comment.
- Review requests: At the beginning of 2012 I received very few author requests. But the more I review, the more requests I receive each month. I can’t accept most of the requests, but I love reading and writing about new authors. I try to choose carefully and I’m happy with most of the books I selected for review this year.
- Challenges: I don’t sign up for a lot of challenges, so last year was a little bit of an experiment, and I think I did really well. The challenges pushed me to read books I wouldn’t have otherwise, and I ended up reading most of what I committed to read. On the flip side, I didn’t write posts about these challenge books nearly as much as I was supposed to.
- Reading the classics: In 2012 I finished War and Peace, The Count of Monte Cristo, and North and South – all books I’ve struggled with in the past, and all three worth every minute. Two books I started but didn’t make it through: Bleak House by Charles Dickens and Catch-22 by Joseph Heller. Should I pick those back up in 2013?
Where do I want to take The Book Stop in 2013?
- Mostly I just want to maintain. I’ll be taking some grad school classes and that may eat into a lot of my time. I noticed this year that a lot of blogs I really enjoy sort of dropped out of blogging, which is a shame but I understand that real life intervenes. I’m hoping to just keep up with my 1-2 reviews a week and write the kind of reviews I like to write. And I’ll just hope you keep reading.
- I always want to be a better reader of others’ blogs. I do believe that being a blogger means being a good blog-follower. I have about 20 blogs I try to visit fairly recently but it’s not often enough! There are just so many good blogs out there.
- In 2012 I didn’t do a lot of meme-ing. I did two Literary Giveaways, the North and South Read-a-long, and a post for Armchair BEA. For a few weeks I joined the Not A Mommy Blog hop but those aren’t book bloggers so it wasn’t a great fit. Otherwise I mostly joined the “It’s Monday, What are You Reading” hop hosted by Book Journey – since that lets me talk about what I would have talked about anyway. I’m always wondering whether I should do more or less of this stuff. I like Top Ten Tuesday, for example, but it almost never fits into my schedule of when I want to post. I like the Classics Club monthly prompts, but again, it’s all I can do to write about the things I want to write about. I don’t need more ideas, just more time. Thoughts?
- What bookish topics do you want to hear more about in 2013? Right now I’m fascinated by the turmoil over false or paid-for reviews on Amazon and other sites. Should reviews be validated in some way or just completely open (in which case, buyer beware!). Is e-reading still an interesting topic? What about the level of sex and violence in young adult fiction? Is literary writing alive and well or barely breathing? I would like The Book Stop to be a place where we think about what it means to read, and not just book reviews.
Wishing everyone a very happy 2013!