Friday, February 19, 2016

FF Friday: In Which I Tell You Why I’m A Blogger

Feature & Follow is a weekly blog hop hosted by Parajunkee and Alison Can Read. This week, I’m going to tell you why I started blogging and the story behind Read All The Things! One of my New Year’s resolutions is to write more personal posts, so this is me attempting to do that.

Why I Blog

Remember that movie, Julie & Julia? Well, there’s a scene where Julie says, “I can write a blog. I have thoughts.” That’s pretty much what happened with me. I started reading blogs when I was a teenager, but I didn’t know about book review blogs. Maybe they weren’t as prevalent back then. I mostly read blogs about extreme lifestyles. You might not know this about me, but I’m interested in wilderness survival, living off the grid, and being self-sufficient. Teenage-me was a misanthrope who had elaborate fantasies of living in the remote wilderness and never seeing another human again. I liked reading about people who were living my dream.

Since I spent so much time reading blogs, I eventually got it in my head that I should start one. I didn’t have the courage to do it until I was around 19. Through my first few years of college, I was a blogger/co-blogger on three different blogs. Thankfully, none of them exist anymore. The first blog was a humor blog (it taught me that I’m not funny). The second was a blog that put fad diets to the test (it taught me that eating cabbage for every meal is a terrible idea). The third was a blog about the history and ethics of capital punishment (it taught me many creative ways to kill people, none of which I've ever used). I enjoyed writing posts and doing research for these blogs, but I wasn’t passionate about any of them. Actually, that’s a lie. The death penalty history blog was interesting in a nightmare-inducing way, but you’re probably not here to read about brutal, historical, government sanctioned murder.

Okay. Fast forward to 2012. I was taking time off between finishing my undergraduate degree and starting a post-BA program. During my time off school, I discovered travel and journal-style blogs. I had always wanted to be the type of person who keeps a journal. So, I set out to start a journal blog about my life. I chose Blogger over Wordpress because I already knew how to use Wordpress and wanted to learn Blogger. I used my name as the blog’s URL because that’s what other journal bloggers did. I didn’t give the blog a name because I couldn’t think of one. I didn’t plan on telling anyone except my family about my journal because I like my privacy (as you can probably tell by my teenage-wilderness-misanthrope phase).

At the end of 2013, I sat down to post on my brand-new blog-journal, and . . . I realized that I’m mind-blowingly boring. I had nothing to say about myself. I started blogging about books because I spent a lot of time reading. That’s how my journal blog accidently became a book blog.

I didn’t actually know that book blogs were a thing until I became more active on Goodreads in 2014. I wrote book reviews on Goodreads and discovered some amazing book bloggers through that site. In 2014, I was the not-so-proud owner of a neglected, nameless blog, so after approximately 3.5 nanoseconds of thought, I slapped Read All The Things! in the header and started posting book reviews. Ta-da! I was now an official book blogger.

Read All The Things! has lasted longer than any other blog I’ve worked on. I think this is because I’ve finally found something that I’m passionate about. I love to read, and I love the book blogging community. I don’t know many people in real life who get ridiculously excited about books. You guys make me feel like slightly less of a weirdo, and that’s why I blog.

The follow part of FF Friday: If you are a book blogger and you leave a link to your blog in the comments below, I will follow you on Bloglovin’. If you want to be friends on Goodreads, TwitterBookLikes, or G+, that would be awesome, too. Click the links to go to my pages on those sites. I’m looking forward to “meeting” you. 



  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

    1. too many spelling errors oops!

      Interesting past blogging themes! Min have been-a blog about frugal living/getting out of debt (featured in a national magazine before I deleted it lol), 'Clean' eating and then I went in the opposite direction and started a different blog on 'Dirty' eating and how I'm maintaining my epic weight loss eating whatever the heck I wanted, and then my previous book blog that I shut down last year for various reasons. And now I'm back, with a new book blog again-we'll see if this one actually sticks lol :)

  2. My blog "evolved" too. I used to blog about everything, then I decided to start a blog specifically for books, and here I am! I'm an old follower....Here's My F&F.

  3. Great reason to start your blog!

    I’m an existing follower.

    Diane @ Diane’s Book Blog

  4. I love this post! I started blogging for very similar reasons. I kind of figured why not? I was reading a lot of blogs and thought I could do it to. And I love writing about books because no one in my life likes them as much as I do either. I wanted somewhere to share my bookish thoughts and feel a sense of community.

  5. That was a great story! I enjoyed reading about how you became a blogger. I started mine for the same reasons. I wanted to talk about books and I wanted to bring awareness to books that I loved that others may not have heard about.

    Also, how exciting that Feature & Follow is back! I missed today, but I'll be jumping on the wagon next Friday! Have a great weekend, AJ!

  6. I love reading about the blogging journey of others - the evolution of a blog is always fascinating to me.

    It sounds like you've found your niche and passion now which is great, because without those blogging isn't all that fun. As you discovered with the other three. Not gonna lie, I'm actually interested in that capital punishment blog!

    My current book blog now evolved from a couple of other blogging experiences, but I've always returned to the bookish community because, like you, there aren't really many in my life who are excited about books and reading.

    Reading With Jade

  7. That a great story. Unique. And I think you're plenty funny. There were parts of your story that made me laugh. Old follower.

    My FF:

  8. I just started blogging in Dec. 2015 so I'm still growing my blog.

    Followed you on bloglovin', twitter, g+ and goodreads.

    The Truth About Books
    My FF Answer Here

  9. I absolutely love this post! I now feel like I know so much more about you, AJ! I also feel like I should be careful if I ever meet you IRL in case you decide to suddenly put those blogging skills to good use. :-)

    Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction

  10. Such an awesome story, AJ! I love the journey you've gone through and glad you've found your blogging passion. :-) Thanks for sharing. Old follower.

    My FF!

  11. I loved that movie too! New goodreads, twitter follower. :)

  12. A great answer. So much detail.

    Thanks for the follow. Following you back via Bloglovin'

  13. Awesome reasons to be a book blogger, Thank you for stopping by and following my blog. Old Follower

  14. I thought about using Wordpress in the beginning as well, but chose blogger. And your not alone in the excitement for books. I am definitely the same way. Thank you for stopping by. :)

  15. This is FABULOUS! First, thank you for sharing your journey! I love it! Second, I think you are MUCH funnier than you give yourself credit for- paragraph 2 made me chuckle from start to finish! And I am SO glad that you found something that you're passionate about. I totally understand what you mean, and it is such a great feeling!!

  16. I have to say that the blog about capital punishment sounds fascinating. When I started my blog, I had all of these plans about the different things that I would post but soon figured out that I only liked posting about books. I should have done a name change like you did. I really enjoyed learning how your blog developed.

  17. LOL that was hilarious! I tried Wordpress but didn't get how-to's. Used to be an anon (anonymous) blogger... it's only a few years back when I started posting my real name and pictures. I also try not to be over-friendly to authors because I don't want to damage whatever friendship we have if I post a negative review of their books. thanks for stopping by my blog. I now follow G+...

  18. That's a pretty awesome start to your blog :) Books are very easy things to be passionate about :) Old BlogLovin' follower! Thanks for stopping by! Happy reading!

  19. Thank you for hopping with us! You got the most votes, so you'll be featured tonight. Love the button and design. <3