Blogo-Birthday Giveaway

Today, April 4, is the seventh anniversary of the first post on Reading Reality. Tomorrow, April 5, is my 61st birthday. And I’m not sure which I find more astonishing.

The banner above was the original header for Reading Reality, back when it was called “Escape Reality, Read Fiction”, a line I got from a t-shirt. I found the original bear the other day, and he’s sitting on my desk right now. He’s still a good luck mascot – and Freddie has not yet found him and played with him to death. Give him time. Freddie, I mean, not the bear. There’s a reason we call him the Fredinator.

In those intervening years, Reading Reality has published 2,902 posts, most of them mine. It’s gone from a 3 or 4 day a week blog to a daily blog – even if I occasionally find myself scrambling to get a post ready on time. Believe it or not, there have been over 22,000 comments made during those seven years. That’s a lot of conversation.

And it has been, and continues to be, an absolute blast to do. It surprised me to realize that this is the second-longest I’ve ever held a single job. My record is 9 years, and that’s coming up fast.

What makes it all worthwhile are the contacts. I may not respond as much as I should, but I love hearing from readers that they have enjoyed the blog and my reviews, whether through comments here or comments on my Goodreads reviews. And I very much appreciate the way that my reach has expanded over the years, so that I get to read even more great books – as well as the occasional clunker.

This week is my opportunity to give back to all of you who have given so much to me over the past seven years, and I hope many more to come. For Reading Reality as well as myself, this is a Hobbit birthday, where I give presents instead of receiving them. I’m giving away something every day this week, whether through a blog tour, due to the generosity of some of my favorite authors, or out of Reading Reality’s pocket.

As the actual anniversary, today’s giveaways are special. I’m giving away a $25 Amazon Gift Card AND a book from the Book Depository up to $25 in value, shipped anywhere that the Book Depository ships, which is a tremendous number of places.

It’s my way of saying thanks to all of you. I’m looking forward to spending many more years together, talking about even more books!

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46 thoughts on “Blogo-Birthday Giveaway

  1. Congrats 7 years is awesome!!! I like reading reviews of books I have already read so I can compare notes, and I also like random bookish posts that are not reviews!

  2. I like an introduction to the read. I can often tell from a few lines if I’ll like the book or not.

  3. Congratulations! Reading book reviews and about new releases and features is always special.

  4. Congratulations! I look for recommendation lists based on topics and new books and reviews.

  5. Wow, congrats on 7 years, that’s an amazing achievement <3
    I always look for book blogs where the writer is honest and fun πŸ™‚

  6. Thanks for the giveaway and Happy Blogoversary!!! I look for good, honest reviews from book blogs to help me decide what books I want to read. πŸ™‚

  7. Congratulations on seven years!

    I love reviews, if it’s a book I’ve read, then it’s always so interesting to see how opinions differ or are similar, and if it’s a book I’m curious about, then it’s really helpful to hear what someone else thinks so I know whether it’s worth the time and money. For me, a mid-length review like on this blog is the best, the overly long ones tend to give away too much information, and one sentence reviews don’t tend to tell me enough about why someone like it or didn’t like it.

  8. A review? Usually I want a thoughtful approach that’ll tell me who this book is for. Sometimes that’s not me, and that’s just fine.

  9. I look for conversational reviews that don’t give spoilers. I love reading why a reviewer loves or dislikes a book.

  10. Congrats!! That’s such a long (and productive) time, it’s really something to feel proud of. I’ve certainly enjoyed my time here, lurking as is my wont (the joys of being an extremely awkward introvert yaay).
    Also, Happy Birthday! Hope you have a great day \o/

    I enjoy reading people’s reviews when they cite what worked for them and why, because then I can see if their thought processes/pet peeves/buttons are similar to mine and thus if I can find new reads or author through them. And it’s worked, I’ve read and loved many books that I wouldn’t even have found existed where it not for them (and you)!
    So thank you so much for all your work πŸ™‚

  11. I think easy navigation is important to be able to find the kinds of books you want to read.

  12. Congratulations on both milestones! I originally discovered your reviews from the much-missed BLI. We share a fondness for many of the same authors and genres, but I really love it when you introduce me to something totally new and unexpected. Thanks for all your interesting and thought-provoking reviews over the years. I’m looking forward to many more!

  13. Happy Bloggiversary!
    Best wishes for many more great and wonderful blogging years ahead πŸ™‚
    I love Book Haul Posts πŸ˜€
    Always to find new books πŸ˜€
    Thank you for your generosity πŸ™‚

  14. Happy Blogoversary and Happy Birthday! I usually look for book recommendation lists organized by genre.

  15. Congratulations on seven years! I am an avid reader and love discovering new authors.

  16. I love looking at reviews. I hate memory loss storylines or dating another woman because it would be safer for the lead heroine. Will not read the rest of a series if that happens. Been burned way to many times and wasted sooooo much money.

  17. I like pertinent communications and reviews but absolutely hate being spammed constantly with repeat info. I really appreciate arc sharing and contests but hate group contest that automatically subscribe you to many, many authors.

  18. Congratulations! I look for book recommendations and gift card giveaways!

  19. Happy, happy, happy blogoversary and happiest of birthdays!!
    As for what feature I’m most looking for in a book blog – definitely book reviews, upcoming releases, author interviws, book recommendations..
    Thanky you for a generous giveaway!!

  20. Happy blogoversary and birthday! I think I look for in-depth book reviews. I really appreciate honesty, but I don’t want reviews to ever be mean.

  21. I mostly look forward to find book recommendations and reviews of lesser known books, interviews with Indie authors, as well as some bookish tags and memes.
    Congratulations and thank you for the giveaway! πŸ™‚

    Best wishes,

  22. i love seeing quotes from the book to see what the writing style is like πŸ™‚

  23. I don’t know how or if you find time to do anything else, but the frequency of your posts, the number of books you are able to feature, and your ability to offer and manage so many giveaways demonstrate clearly that this blog is a freakishly awesome achievement. One might assume this would be the work of a small but professional/salaried full-time staff. Of course, I am just citing a few features of this blog that make it such a service to readers like me! I am wowed by the microscopic and macroscopic perspective and follow through a site like this demands; this is an organizational phenomenon one doesn’t see regularly (IMHO). With respect, Kara S

    1. frequency of posts that interest me is a key factor in directing the time I spend on different book blogs, to answer your question directly…

  24. As long as it is thoughtful and gives clearly the opinion, a review is fine for me. I like reading enthusiastic reviews that may me think it may be the book for me, reading the ones that give info that may me think it is or isn’t.

  25. It’s pretty impressive that after 7 sevens years, you actually blog more now rather than less. Congrats on your blogversary! I love reviews that tell me why the book worked or didn’t work for the reviewer, rather than just gushing about how great it is. Sometimes, something that is a negative for the reviewer would be a positive for me, so I like all those little details.

  26. Happy Blogoversary! I usually like reviews because this way I know how much I would enjoy reading some book. I read multiple reviews, then I purchase the book if it sparks my interest.

  27. Happy Birthday!
    I think stats and rating different elements can be helpful for the reader — e.g. How many pages is the book?, are the chapters short/long/mix of both, is it an addictive book or is it a good one to put down and come back to later?

  28. Happy bday! For reviews, I like them to be personalized to the reviewer’s own interests and expectations, not a generic canned type. I also like spoilers to be clearly marked as such. πŸ™‚

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