It amazes me how many social (media) outlets there are. It further amazes me how people manage to keep up with them all. There is Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, blogging, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Google+, Goodreads, LibraryThing, and many more. I use three of these: Twitter, Instagram, and blogging (though I have essentially defunct accounts for most). Twitter is fun. Blogging I enjoy because it provides a place for me to discuss the things I want and it acts a sort-of diary about what I was reading/feeling/doing. I can tell just by reading my writing whether I was having a good day or not. And really, my Instagram activity is spotty. I can’t use Facebook for the insane amount of political bullshit that’s on there. I find Pinterest irritating – another inspirational quote, anyone? Though I shouldn’t poke too much fun, as I recently used it to find examples of a hairstyle I wanted to try. And Goodreads. I want to be a good Goodreads user, but I can’t seem to find the time and I don’t like their search set-up. Searchability matters.
This brings me to this week’s list: things that make my book blogging/reading easier (as hosted by The Broke and the Bookish). I know many of you use Goodreads and all of its possibilities. I’m sincerely curious, for those of you who are particularly active, how you manage to use Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Goodreads, LibraryThing, Booklikes, blog, read the books to blog about AND deal with work, family, friends, and anything else that comes up. There’s only so much time in a day.
So, in no particular order, here are the things that make my reading and blogging life easier.
Other blogs. This is an easy one. There are a couple of bloggers (and a writer) I trust implicitly. We rarely disagree, so if they say they loved it, I’m certain I will as well. It makes finding a book I know I’ll love a simple task. They are booksaremyfavouriteandbest, Bookishly Boisterous, and Annabel Smith.
Twitter. A few of my favorite authors are easily accessible via twitter. If they recommend a book, it’s easy to favorite the tweet and return to it at a later date.
Writing in the margins. Of all the book “rules” I break, this is typically the one other people don’t understand. I like to write in my books. I take notes about what I enjoy, what doesn’t work, what quotes I like. Of course, I only do this to personal copies. I occasionally lend my books out to other bookish people who return my books, appalled at the extensively defaced copy. However, it’s a good way to know exactly what I thought of a book.
Libraries. I am, of course, biased because I am a librarian. However, I truly believe libraries are cornerstones of their communities. My library saves me more money than I care to admit.
Reading the ending first. Since I’m feeling confessional, I do this too. Sometimes if a book is not going in a direction I like, I check the end to make sure it will be worth my time. I don’t always do this, especially with longer books or mysteries, but I do it often enough to be worth mentioning. If I had read the end of ‘Wuthering Heights’ first, I never would have had to suffer through the whole thing. If I’d read the end of ‘Revolutionary Road’ first, I might have saved myself some heartache. ‘Revolutionary Road’ devastated me.
Movies. If a movie I want to see is based on a book, I’ll go out of my way to read the book. It makes the “What should I read next?” choice easy for me. Right now I want to see both The Spectacular Now and Austenland. I’ve already read Austenland and I thought it was fine, but the movie stars Keri Russell – so I will be seeing it. Although I don’t particularly like the term, I have the biggest girl crush on her. The Americans is the best thing on TV right now and I’ve seen every single episode of Felicity. Twice. A caveat: I’ve not seen Breaking Bad, which my brother insists I must watch and that it’s the best thing on television, ever.
Netgalley. This helps and hurts. It helps because I can see the upcoming titles. It hurts because sometimes the urge to request a title I know I won’t have time to read is overwhelming.
WordPress for iOS. This is a silly one, but the amount I use it necessitates its mention. I have the WordPress app on my phone and iPad, I get quite a bit of blogging maintenance done (like correcting typos, responding to comments) when I otherwise wouldn’t (on the train, stuck in traffic). It makes my life easier (or less irritating, at the very least).
If you couldn’t tell by my last entry, I’m really struggling this week (I made it to 8). I don’t use a lot of tools to make my book blogging/reading easier. What do you use? Is there something I’m absolutely missing out on? And how do you find the time for it all?
*Let’s hope no one defines me by my record collection.