As a part of our 1st year celebration, I wanted to share a little of my experience when I first began blogging, starting with the book review blogs that were (and still are) an inspiration to me.
When I first decided that I wanted to try and build my own book review blog, I chose a name and threw everything together in just a couple of days. When I realized that I really liked what I was doing and decided to take it more seriously, I thought it would be a good idea to look around at other book review blogs to gather some ideas about what I liked and didn't like.
There is a long list of blogs that I envy, but here are the originals that have influenced me and remain at the top of my favorites.
When I first came across Rabid Reads, I immediately fell in love with the werewolf theme. I love vampires, but anyone who knows me is aware of my werewolf/shifter obsession. I still find myself having blogger envy over those adorable little paw print ratings at the end of each review.
But what I admire most about Rabid Reads is that it doesn't blend in with other blogs. It has its own unique style and that's why it's listed as one of my inspirations.
I was originally drawn to I Smell Sheep because of their diversity. They have urban fantasy reviews, comics, manga, and movie reviews. You can even find convention coverage there.
I'm a big fan of comics. I love the artwork and being able to read them in one sitting. They are perfect for my breaks in between urban fantasy/paranormal romance stories. Even so, I was a little reluctant to add comics to the blog because I'm aware that not a lot of my friends and followers read them. But seeing blogs like I Smell Sheep and Mother/Gamer/Writer feature comics made me feel more comfortable with doing the same thing.
I Smell Sheep inspired me to share all of the geeky things I love ;-)
Most adult fantasy readers love sexy and edgy. And with their sexy name and smokin' hot graphics, I can easily say that Under the Covers is one of the hottest book review sites I've come across since I started blogging.
Once I made it past the visual eye candy, I noticed that UTC had a large number of followers. I remember thinking to myself that I would be lucky to have 100 people interested in reading anything that I wrote and that I would never reach a following as large as theirs. And even though it's a year later and we've reached a goal that still amazes me, seeing the progress that they continue to make is still inspiring.
No one writes reviews like Tracy at One Good Book Deserves Another. They're always so in-depth and worded so perfectly. I often wonder why she doesn't start writing books herself.
"Miller's writing is a feast for the senses, with lyrical descriptive passages that paint startlingly clear visuals and evoke depth of emotion in sublimely subtle ways. Her grasp of the complexity of human reaction to difficult situations was well evidenced, translated into characters' actions and thoughts with a believability that is too often lacking. Her characters were real, with their own faults and mistakes made, regrets and disappointments, but they were also both decent, good people at their core, and their actions and dialogue felt very organic and natural to situations of varying emotional intensity."
- from Tracy's review of "Endless Night" by Maureen A. Miller
I doubt I'll ever be able to write reviews like these, but reading anything written by One Good Book Deserves Another encourages me to give it a try.