On Blogging, Hobbies, and Books: A Spontaneous Blogiversary Q&A

Two years ago, the Internet changed forever.

24 comments

Two years ago, the Internet changed forever.

That’s right. Today is my blogiversary. I started my blog on March 25th, 2020 in the parallel universe that was 2020 yet still managed to be out-crazied by 2022.

Because I could think of nothing else to do for this absolutely momentous occasion, I asked on Twitter for some questions for a Q&A. Thank you everyone who asked questions on this thread!

Let’s just get into the questions.

The Questions

What are your favorite blog posts to write and has this changed over time/since you first started blogging?

Oh this is a really good question!

When I first started blogging, my favorite posts to write were book reviews, but it has since switched to discussion posts and essays.

I still love writing book reviews, but they kind of stress me out because I never have time to write them right after finishing the book and then I have to keep notes to make sure I don’t forget the stuff I wanted to say about them. And I love writing discussion posts now… because I have a heck of a lot of things to discuss.

What are some favorite books you read because they were recommended by other bloggers?

Right now I’m reading The Poppy War because of all the hype. I’m currently about a fourth of the way through and I think it’s pretty good.

What’s your favorite post that you’ve done?

This is a difficult question, but my favorite post on my blog is still probably “Why I Don’t Use Trigger Warnings in my Book Reviews (Trigger Warning: Trigger Warnings)” because it was the first time I chose not to self-censor around relatively controversial topics. In that post I explain why trigger warnings, at least in the way that they are currently used by many people, rub me the wrong way and why I do not include them in my own book reviews.

I posted that article almost eight months ago, and I may do a follow-up at some point because I have more to say on the subject of trigger warnings and I want to clarify some points. It’s not a perfect post, but I think it’s pretty good– it’s also one of my most successful posts, but the important thing is that it’s symbolically significant to me.

If I had decided not to post that article, which I almost did, I would never have written half of my subsequent discussion posts. The thing about me is that I have very strong opinions, but for a long time I was scared to post anything that could be considered even slightly controversial, political or unpopular.

As it turns out, though, the blogging community is at large very rational and willing to have conversations about these things. (Well, I mean, I have been subtweeted before, but that was Twitter) Also, stepping out of the “safety zone” of topics and fleshing out my arguments for discussion posts has forced me to reconsider some of my previously-held beliefs and overall it’s really helped me become a better critical thinker.

What are some of your other hobbies besides blogging and reading?

Well, due to school, the rest of my hobbies have kind of disappeared into the ether, but, let’s see…

I’m going to be starting college in August, and as of now, I will be studying computer science. I am also going to be in a cybersecurity program at my university, which I’m really excited for. In that vein, programming has been one of my hobbies since the beginning of high school. I haven’t had time to do much of it recently, but during quarantine I spent, well, several days literally just coding.

I actually have a published app on the iOS store which I released when I was 15 and I’m planning to publish another this summer, presuming I regain the motivation school has sucked out of me, but I can’t share the title of the app at this time unfortunately because my real name is attached to the App Store listing, and, you know, privacy.

I’ve done some posts on here related to programming, namely my Twitter bot post (the bot isn’t up anymore however) and the post where I generated book reviews with an AI .

Favourite and least favourite things about blogging?

Favorite thing about blogging: I love so many things about blogging that it’s hard to choose a favorite. I love having a place to write about the books I am reading and be a nerd who analyzes books in her free time in peace without the blank stares of my friends as I attempt to convey the pure brilliance of whatever book I just finished. I love being able to write about my opinions on things. That’s just the gist of it, I guess.

Least favorite thing about blogging: Frankly, just that blogging doesn’t get as much hype or attention as other platforms. It’s a really underrated hobby.

If you could go back and change one thing, is there anything you would change?

In the context of blogging, I would say that I wish I had gotten involved in the blogging community sooner. For the first couple months of my blog, I didn’t really interact with anyone else. Once I found everyone here writing about books online and realized I was not alone, it was way more fun than it already was.

If you could only recommend one book for everyone to read what would it be?

Oh no…. you’ve done it. You’ve asked my least favorite question. I cannot possibly choose just one book to recommend everyone to read! I mean, I have several favorite books per category that change with the seasons and every full moon. Quick, what’s a way out? Maybe choosing a really basic answer for this category, like 1984. Well, I do think everyone should read 1984.

If you could give one piece of advice to book bloggers, what advice would you give?

My main advice would be, as horrifically cliche as it is, to remember why you started blogging and never forget that blogging should be fun. It’s a hobby that should ultimately be driven internally– if it’s not fun for you, what is there to gain?

(Conveniently, I’ve written an entire post on everything you need to know to start a book blog and advice for new bloggers. Read it here!)

What inspires you to keep going? What inspired you to start?

What inspires me to continue blogging is largely the same thing as what inspired me to start: a need for an outlet for my writing and opinions. I love to tell people what I think, and I love to read books. That’s what it boils down to, I guess.

Did you ever want to quit and just stop blogging?

Sometimes I feel discouraged by the comparative lack of attention that blogging gets, but honestly I’m way too obsessively attached to my blog at this point to ever seriously consider quitting. It’s a really important outlet for me, so even if blogging completely dies I think I will still be writing posts.

What is the most unusual book you’ve read because of blogging?

Oh this is a really hard one to answer… hm…. I haven’t really read that many super unusual books. I might just have to go with Illuminae by Jay Kristoff & Amie Kaufmann because it has a super unique multimedia format and I did read it last year because of the blogosphere and social media hype. (Reminds me I still have yet to finish that series even though I read the first book last January…)

Well, those are all the questions for today. Thank you all so much for sticking around and following me on my blogging journey!

If you liked this post, consider subscribing to Frappes & Fiction. I post about the books I read, the books I think YOU should read, and anything else on my mind.

(I’m also on social media!)

24 comments on “On Blogging, Hobbies, and Books: A Spontaneous Blogiversary Q&A”

    1. Lol, I just have a really hard time picking a favorite book! I was looking at my other Q&A post from a few months ago and I said the same thing but then picked a different book. I’m quite indecisive. Thank you for reading & submitting a question!!

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Happy blogiversary, Emily!! Two years is quite the achievement 🎉🥳🎈I really enjoyed reading your answers to these questions and am now even more glad you decided to publish the trigger warnings post – your discussions are always some of the most interesting ones on the blogosphere and I couldn’t imagine having to go without them!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I definitely feel the same about getting involved in the community sooner- I wish I had too! I’m approaching my four years and for the first three I never read any blogs and my blog had no passage (surprise surprise). I’ve very much enjoyed burying myself in discussion posts, and some of yours are fantastic, I think it really shows you enjoy writing them!

    Thanks for all the posts

    Zoë x

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Happy blogging anniversary!
    Super good questions & answers, I enjoyed a lot reading them! And I can relate to most of them, especially the part regarding posts about personal opinions. It was super difficult for me to start sharing my opinions, during the first 1-2 years I used very neutral tone and no discussion posts!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. The trigger warnings theme is a good one to discuss. When I grew up there were few things to stop you reading what ever books you wanted. Even the library let me take out adult books when I was a teenager.

    Liked by 1 person

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