Today, I'm welcoming book reviewer Beth Erin!
(Deb says...) So- how long have you been reviewing and how did you decide on the theme for your blog?
I launched Faithfully Bookish in April 2016 but I have been actively reviewing for about two years now. I spent a lot of time thinking about what I hoped to accomplish through blogging and 1 Thessalonians 5:11 is the verse that has settled in my heart so I’ve just been trying to live that out by connecting and encouraging readers and authors.
What’s the best part of being a reviewer?
Initially, it was the BOOKS (what’s not to love, right?) but now that I’ve been around the block (Faithfully Bookish just celebrated its first blogiversary), I have to say building relationships is the very best part! The bookish are my peoples :)
I love the symbiotic relationship between readers and authors (especially within the Christian genres) and it is so much fun chatting with other readers through comments and social media. In-person events like Christian Fiction Readers Retreat and book signings make me over the moon happy!
What’s the most difficult part of the ‘the job’?
Oh that’s definitely a tie between time management and #swoof! You’ve heard the saying, “so many books, so little time,” right? Well, my tbr is… ahem… rather large and extremely tempting. I am a book glutton. Authors just keep cranking out fabulous fiction and I want to read them ALL (but I can’t because well, life.)
So, what’s swoof, right? Swoof is an acronym/hashtag for “Squeezing Words Out Of Feelings.” I coined this lovely while chatting with some book blogger friends about the struggle we often face when we’re striving to craft a review worthy of whatever wonderful book we’ve just read, #allthefeels and #nowords just don’t cut it for reviews. ;) Ask any reviewer and they’ve probably experienced something like #swoof
I think this is the exact reason why the few reviews I've done are very simple. I wear out my brain for fiction and there's no #swoof left to explain how I feel about a great book!
What was the last book you read that you couldn’t put down?
It pains me to answer this question with just one book but the MOST RECENT book to fall into that category is Life After by Katie Ganshert. (but there have been and will be many more)
Yes, that definitely wasn't a fair question! (and Katie Ganshert has a fascinating real life story too!)
What do you do when you aren’t making authors happy? (I assume you have a life outside of fiction. Maybe not!)
Trying to keep my family happy (authors are easier, lol!) My husband and I have four children ranging from kindergarten to junior high and we homeschool. Otherwise, no… I don’t have a life. ;)
What would you like to share about yourself that few people know?
If I told you, everyone would know! Umm… here are 5 bookish characters most like me, does that work?
I'm really contemplating the addition of piglet in this group! :)
What is your favorite…setting? Place and time? Genre’?
“Variety is the spice of life.” I love them all! Well, all “real” places and times, I’m not into fantasy and sci-fi types. My first love is historical romance but I enjoy everything from biblical times to modern day, general fiction to suspense (no thrillers, I don’t like to be scared or have nightmares, ha!)
If you had a rainy afternoon alone to watch a movie what would it be? And what meal would you have delivered if that afternoon included a quiet evening as well?
We’re really dreaming here but I’ll play pretend… Okay, I’m all alone and I’m going to watch a movie (#ratherbereading)… I’ll have to choose a chick flick or rom-com because no one ever wants to watch those with me anyway and I don’t want to get in trouble with hubby or the kids for picking something they wanted to watch with me… of course, it’s going to take forever to pick because it’s been at least that long since I’ve been alone and wanted to watch a movie, so maybe we better move on to the food!
(Deb interjects-- I often spend more time looking for the perfect movie or show on Amazon, Acorn or Netflix than I do actually watching anything!)
By the way, it’s a good thing we’re already pretending because NO ONE delivers around here and the closest take out is pizza from a gas station but since I’m in dreamland (and you suggested it), I’m ordering a country fried chicken (not a whole chicken but one of those huge butterflied, battered, and deep fried chicken breasts the size of a dinner plate) with mashed potatoes and gravy, honey-buttered rolls, and a deep fried onion blossom (nope, no veggies). Calories don’t count in dreamland so I’m having apple pie ala mode for dessert!
This sounds great and it's why I try to go south of the Mason Dixon at least once a year!
If you could wiggle your nose and be in a new career, what would it be?
Hmmm… if I could just get paid for what I do now I think that would make hubby happy :D Once the kids are older, I’d love to look into becoming a virtual assistant for Christian authors or something similar.
Yes, wouldn't that be nice? As for a virtual assistant, you would be much in demand! You'd have to set boundaries right up front!
What piece of advice would you offer authors who are just starting out?
Don’t give up! Get connected with other authors, bloggers, and reviewers who will encourage you along the way. I think we all need that and finding people who get you just makes facing each challenge that much easier. And, ask for help! Even when I can’t personally help a new author, I’m happy to ask around or point them in another direction.
Same for new reviewers--
NO SPOILERS! Oy! I cringe! Just keep it short and simple (especially for consumer sites), how did the story/characters make you feel? (this is the #swoof in action) Did you cry, did you hug the book, are you telling all your friends and neighbors and their pets to go buy the book?
Also, you don’t have to be a book blogger to bless authors’ socks off… just spread the book love by sharing your review on retail sites and social media. Write a review, copy and paste, easy peasy! If your swoofer is broken, “I liked this book” will work in a pinch ;)
(Preach it, sister! I 'cringe' when readers feel they have to be NYT reviewers to...review!)
Thanks so much for indulging me, Beth!
And bringing all your awesome graphics (are these officially memes? or not?) along with you. A great sampling of what you do to help promote the books you've reviewed!
Thank you for having me, Debra!!! I’m so honored and I hope every reader becomes a reviewer!
|If you're a reader and you'd like to give reviewing a try, contact me via email: Debra (At) debraemarvin.com|