I recently gave in to the hype and signed up for a Twitter account. Yes, it can be addicting, especially those first couple of weeks, but I don’t think I’ve gone overboard with it. One thing I’ve found is that book bloggers — those people whose blogs are about books and reading, and/or include mostly book reviews — are very active on Twitter. I’ve been hearing a lot lately from them about Book Blogger Appreciation Week, or BBAW for short, which is scheduled for September 14-18, 2009.
The first BBAW was held just last year, and was the brainchild of Amy Riley – also known as My Friend Amy. Amy and her fellow book bloggers found it to be a great experience, and now plan to hold the event every September. There’s a ton of work that goes into it. One main thing is, there are a lot of categories for awards, and bloggers and their readers submit nominations for these categories. When nominations close, all the lucky bloggers who were nominated are notified by e-mail. Then there are Panels for the different categories, and the Panelists check out the nominated blogs and/or specific entries and decide upon a shortlist (which seems to be between three and five, I don’t know if there’s a maximum of five or six, or what). So there’s a deadline for nominations, a deadline to volunteer for Panels, a deadline to decide on the shortlist, and a deadline to come up with a winner for each category.
There are also giveaways. Many book bloggers have book giveaways on a regular basis, receiving one or more review copies of books, reviewing them, and then offering them to other readers via their blogs. Giveaways are highlighted during the BBAW event, which makes good sense — though of course it adds to the workload of all the bloggers doing giveaways, and to those on the administrative side of BBAW who list the details before the big week, so blog readers can see what fun stuff will be available.
So I was seeing all these posts about BBAW on Twitter. Last week, I was surprised — VERY surprised — to receive an e-mail saying, “Congratulations, you’ve been nominated for a BBAW award!” I went, “Huh? Me?” I didn’t think it was possible. I don’t consider myself a book blogger. Heck, I don’t really think of myself as “a blogger” at all, but just as someone who has a blog and writes whatever on there, sometimes. The reason I chose the title “All the parts of my life” for my blog was to give myself the freedom to write about whatever’s on my mind and anything I’ve been doing. (And because it’s one of my favorite poetry quotes.)
I’ve started following a number of book bloggers on Twitter, and have also added several book blogs to my Google Reader subscriptions in the past four to six weeks. And I have to say, I’m amazed and impressed by the amount of time and effort these people put into the endeavor. (I think most are women — there are male librarian bloggers, but I don’t think I’ve seen any male book bloggers yet.) It’s not just off the top of their heads: they need to READ BOOKS, and then write about the books, and sometimes they talk about publishing and the book industry, audiobooks and e-books, sometimes they have interviews with authors, and they manage those giveaways, plus they design their site, have to keep up with comments — it sounds like a full-time job! Since getting the e-mail about my “nomination,” I’ve started WISHING I could be a book blogger, but then I think about my everyday life and of course I ALREADY have a full-time job, and really there’s no way I could do it, and do it WELL.
So yeah, I feel like a poser. But, I was nominated in the category “Best Blog Name,” which is actually kind of cool. I don’t think I’m a book blogger, but I appreciate that someone likes the name of my blog enough to nominate it. 🙂 In return, I’ll give credit where it’s due, to the REAL book bloggers, and will follow and read more of their bookish musings.