NOTICE: (Updated March 5, 2010)

Beginning December 19, 2009, Books 'N Border Collies will be posting but only intermittently while I pursue personal goals. I plan to share some reading I'm doing, but there will be no reviews. I will, however, be sharing my exploration of vegetarian cooking and the cookbooks and websites I use to educate myself. I hope you enjoy it!

Lezlie



Monday, August 24, 2009

About This Blog




UPDATE: March 5, 2010 This blog is going through some changes, but until I decide exactly what they are, the following description is of what this blog was, rather than what it is now or what it will be in the future. Thanks for understanding!
___________________________________________

With all of us anticipating Book Blogger Appreciation Week and the excitement over all the wonderful award nominations everyone has been receiving, I have found myself thinking more and more about Books 'N Border Collies and how it is perceived by my readers. As much as many of us like to say we blog for ourselves, I believe most of us can't help but be swept up into the sense of community and friendship that develops when you take a chance and display your thoughts for anyone, anywhere to read.

I have been book blogging for a little more than a year and a half now, and the little ideas regarding sharing thoughts about books that I had when I started Books 'N Border Collies have blossomed into grandiose plans that range from intending to book blog for the rest of my life to writing a book about the experience. This corner of my life has become so much more than I ever expected it to be! Reading has always been an enormous part of my life, but I've never had friends that shared as deep a passion for books. Finding folks like all of you has been such fun!! Now, as I contemplate where I want to take this blog in the future, this would be a good time for me to share with my readers what I am hoping to achieve here in the coming months and, hopefully, years.

I don't think of my posts as "reviews". When I started, I kind of did. But as I read other bloggers who write true reviews or masterful in-depth analyses of what they read, I discovered I didn't have the patience to do what others do so well already. What I think I'm good at is reading a fairly wide variety of books and identifying the kind of reader who might enjoy them. Whether or not I personally liked a book is somewhat immaterial. I'll tell my readers if I liked it or not and why, but I'm more interested in finding people who would like it. I'll be focusing on providing short to mid-length posts on every book I read, aiming mostly for quick-hit recommendations for readers rather than literary analysis.

While I won't be writing any analysis here, I do like to study it myself, and I plan to continue to share my Lifelong Learning Project and the tools I'm using to pursue my personal education, such as courses from The Teaching Company.

And, of course, there will be the occasional chats about the doings of Max and Skye, because what is Books 'N Border Collies without the Border Collies? :-)

With BBAW coming up, I'm going to be discovering many new blogs and I'm hoping many new bloggers/readers will be discovering me. I love to interact with my readers, so I encourage anyone and everyone to leave thoughts, suggestions, questions or just a hello any old time you feel like it. I'm looking forward to getting to know you all better!



Related Posts:

About Ratings, or the Lack Thereof

26 comments:

Mon said...

Good luck.

I enjoy reading blogs of different reviewing style. I think I prefer the ones that are authentic and say it from the heart.

Lezlie said...

Mon ~ Thank you! I, too, enjoy the various styles that bloggers have adopted, everything from formal to off-the-cuff, serious to funny downright snarky. There is a place for them all!

Lezlie

Natasha @ Maw Books said...

I'd be lying if I said that I was blogging for myself. I'm not. If nobody was reading my blog I wouldn't be doing it still. I like the interaction and how social of an activity that it makes reading become.

Lezlie said...

Natasha ~ I'd like to think I would continue whether anyone was reading or not but honestly that's all bluster. :-) I'm with you. It's the interaction that truly makes it worth it. If we were really doing this for ourselves, wouldn't we just use a notebook?

Lezlie

Rebecca Reid said...

Lezlie, I wouldn't use a notebook because I can't search it and assign categories and such. Even if nobody read my blog, I'd still keep it I think. But I probably wouldn't read nearly as much, nor woudl I put as much time in to my "reviews." I have a cooking blog that no one reads (at least, no one comments on) and I've been doing it for eight months now. It really is just for me. But I'm not very dedicated to it: it's just motivation to get me to cook and be creative in doing so.

I'm kind of with you and yet the opposite of you in terms of reviewing. My reviews are more analysis and my thoughts about it but I can't rate my reads. I guess I just want to capture how I felt and what I learned from the books I read.

Lezlie said...

Rebecca ~ Yours was one of the blogs I was thinking of when I talked about the ones that write such great analysis. You're so good at it!!

Lezlie

Rebecca Reid said...

Aw, thanks! That's sweet. I still don't think of them as reviews, ironically enough. I think of reviews as the people who put stars 1 thru 5 on their blog and say "I liked this but not that." I guess I do some of that, minus the stars...

Lezlie said...

Rebecca ~ Now that you mention it, I should mention my lack of ratings. I don't rate because I never know until much later what I really think of a book. One I thought I didn't like may stick with me much longer than one I thought I did!

Lezlie

Jenny said...

Great post! I'm looking forward to BBAW too.

Lezlie said...

Thanks, Jenny! There is a lot to look forward to!

Lezlie

Diane said...

Lezlie...I'm happy I found your blog, along with so many other great ones. I've become obsessed with reading blogs and posting entries on mine. I LOVE discovering new bloggers all the time and commenting, as I remember how lonely blogging was those first 6 months for me just about 1 year ago.

keep up the good work.

Lezlie said...

Diane ~ Thanks! I am glad you found your way here, too! We forget once we've been at it for awhile, but those first few months *are* really tough, and it's easy to get discouraged. But the payoff for hanging in there is fantastic! :-)

Lezlie

Trish said...

What a great post, Lezlie! This is a very exciting time of year when it seems everyone kind of bands together for the common community (which I'm learning is much much larger than I ever could have thought). What I think is so great about the community is that there is a little bit of everything--whether it is telling your readers about a book and who you think might like it or expressing how the book made you feel and hoping that your readers can connect that way. I don't consider what I write "reviews" either, even though I tag them that way, but I do love sharing what I think and hearing what others think as well.

Oh, and bring on the tidbits of Max and Skye--we love them!

Lezlie said...

Trish ~ I think we all pretty much fall back on the term "review" for lack of a better word. That's why I thought I would try to define what I'm doing a little better for the new people coming around. I've become uncomfortable with "review", because I feel like something is expected with that word that I'm not producing.

And Max & Skye would love a little face time! I'll have to get some pics of them in summer mode, playing in the water from the garden hose.

Lezlie

Jeane said...

Like you, I don't have any friends nearby who love books as much as I do. Blogging is such a great way to connect with other book-lovers! I am simply not very good at writing in-depth analysis of the books I read, and that would feel too much like writing papers for school (tedium). I like to just share my thoughts about it; hopefully that gives readers enough of an idea of the book they know if it's something they're interested in or not. I've always enjoyed your blog so much!

Lezlie said...

Jeane ~ Back at ya! I love the way you write your reviews. They're "Goldilocks" reviews -- Not too little, not too much, but just right. :-) I agree with the school papers comparison. I kept telling myself that's what I wanted to do, the way I wanted to write, but then I never did it. Must be a reason for that. . . . And you write about lots of fun animal books that I may never read, but they're so cool to hear about!

Lezlie

Nan said...

This was a wonderful post. I don't call my write-ups 'reviews' - I say, book reports. In fact, when I first started the blog, I tried to find an online form of the ones we used to have to do in school - you know, locale, main character, etc. I thought it would be a fun thing to do. But then as I started writing more, my heart came into it too much to follow a form. I have so enjoyed the whole book blogging world. I would venture to say that no one I know in my offline life has ever heard of Persephone Books, including the librarians! I love having certain author connections in my head - for example, you and Graham Greene. Because you like him so much and I have liked the movies based on his books, I want to read him. Every single day I read about some book or author on someone's blog that is new to me. Many older, and particularly older British books are now in my sphere of reading - books I had never heard of. It truly is a wonderful world, the world of blogs.

Lezlie said...

Nan ~ That *is* another of the great things! I, too, have been exposed to numerous books/authors I would never have picked up otherwise. The reading challenges are another way we stretch our boundaries. I myself have been much more open to the idea of short stories because of bloggers I've been reading. I never paid much attention to them before.

Lezlie

Teddy Rose said...

I kept track of books I read using a spiral notebook before I started blogging. I wrote mini reviews for myself to remember each book. I found it almost impossible to find a particular book in my notes. That's why I started blogging. Now I can always find my reviews quickly.

That said, I love that people actually read my blog and comment! I love being a part of the book blogging community.

If people were to stop reading my blog, I would still post all of my reviews there but I wouldn't do any other kind of post.

Lezlie said...

Teddy ~ I've kept a list in a journal since 1993, but it's only titles and authors. Consequently, there are a whole bunch I can't remember a thing about! :-) I can see where, in your case, you have all these great notes, but can't find them. That would be difficult. I'm sure glad you started blogging to fix that issue, otherwise we'd have never met! :-)

Lezlie

Rebecca :) said...

I think that the book blogging community is just wonderful. I also am so glad to have met others who have an interest in books and who get as giddy in a bookstore as I do. :)

I also can't wait to discover all kinds of new blogs through BBAW. It's going to be a lot of fun!

Lezlie said...

Rebecca ~ And lucky for us, BBAW is only two weeks away! Voting week is a blast, too, since we get to see all the finalists. And that's even closer!

Lezlie

damnedconjuror said...

I totally agree with "I believe most of us can't help but be swept up into the sense of community and friendship that develops when you take a chance and display your thoughts for anyone, anywhere to read."

Isn't that the whole point of blogging, to get your thoughts out 'there' to other people. You want people to listen, to discuss, to argue. It's what blogging is all about. If it was only for you then why not write a diary.

When I review, I try to add some analyses, mostly what I think a particular scene is about or what the book is trying to say. I don't always do that and occasionally I find myself just coasting through a review.

The community is the most important thing in blogging. I do enjoy going around and posting comments. However, I try not to post a one line comment or a comment that doesn't add anything like wow that sounds great. Although I'm sure I've done that before.

Lezlie said...

Damned Conjuror ~ It's good to see you! I do leave one-liner comments, but I think it's just to let the blogger know I'm still out here reading his or her work. Sometimes it's just nice to know that someone really is there behind the "follower" icon or subscription. :-)

Lezlie

damnedconjuror said...

Hey, yeah I suppose that is true as well. For example, it's nice that you noticed I was back in your post. That's why the community is the most important thing, if a blogger does feel as if they're a part of it then well they'll stop blogging. That's why things like BBAW are a good way in which to communicate with a wider audience.

Lezlie said...

Damned Conjuror ~ I completely agree. I'm so excited for BBAW! It was a great thing for me last year, and I think it's a wonderful way for new bloggers to start to feel more involved.

Lezlie