I often feel the need to defend my book-blogging hobby in the face of questions like: ‘Why do you take photos of books?’ and ‘Why don’t you just read them?’ And to those people I want to say:
Of course I want to read books, but I don’t JUST want to read books.
So here are the top 3 reasons I take photos of my books, told with help from the ever quotable Cassandra Clare.
1. “We live & breathe words”
I created Babbling Books in May 2015 after my friend Charlee convinced me I was missing out on a whole ‘bookish’ sub culture that existed right under my nose. As she well knew I’ve been an avid reader since I could read story books on my own, and that passion has never abated. So discovering the Bookstagram community felt like coming home, now I have place to talk about all the books I am passionate about every day, not just once a month at my local bookclub.
Through connecting with people I’ve also discovered there are overlapping communities of booklovers all over the internet. Everywhere I look there are bookworms who ‘live and breathe words’ like I do. Some of my favourites are:
-Booklr (babbling–books) for photo inspiration and to indulge my inner Harry Potter fangirl.
– Twitter (babblingbookbox) for bookish news, and connecting with authors and publishers.
– Goodreads (Tamsien West) for posting star ratings, reviews, recording my book ‘shopping list’ and participating in online book clubs
– Booktube (Coming soon) currently a place for me to watch reviews and discussions, and be inspired by the passion of others.
2. “It was books that made me feel that perhaps I was not completely alone.”
One of my favourite things about sharing book photos and reviews is all the incredible friends I have made from all over the world. It is a joy to connect with inspiring, encouraging & sometimes challenging people. They motivate me through reading slumps, blow me away with excellent book recommendations, press me to read outside my comfort zone, and enrich my world far more than I ever could have anticipated. There are no greater friendships than those forged through shared experience, and the stories we share are just as important.
Though there are too many amazing women for me list them all, here are a few of the ladies who have most supported and influenced me:
- Charlee aka Bookinspired_ (Who will laugh because I used Cassie quotes for this post)
- Lara aka Writinglaraferrari (Who challenges me to be daring and honest)
- Shauna aka B00kstorebabe (Who is a kick-ass mega babe I ardently admire)
- Danielle aka Halfdesertedstreets (Who is the kindest, most genuine soul)
- Margaret aka Bookmateriality (Who reads widely and writes thoughtfully)
3. “Only the very weak-minded refuse to be influenced by literature and poetry.”
To me, it’s not just about taking photos of books, it’s about sharing stories on pages and the stories in our hearts. It has been said that readers live a thousand lives, and I think that truth is only amplified when shared with friends.
I read to change my world and to confirm it. I read to experience joy, fear, sadness, love and hope. I read to broaden my horizons and to feel at home. I read. But I do not read alone, and I hope that you will continue to read with me.