10 Hours a Week!
In April 2012, I fell in love.
Laid by a sun-drenched pool with the heat on my skin, I fell in love.
I’d never met a man like him: mysterious, intense, and passionate.
The passion I felt, the wonder and awe I felt for people I had never met, inspired me to make more of my life, to enjoy it a little more, to approach it with a new-found passion, and so as I came to the end of Christian and Ana’s story a different life began.
There were authors out there to discover, and not only did they write inspiring stories, they were inspiring people in their own right—willing to chat over Facebook and Twitter about their characters and the thrill of writing.
They enjoyed the interaction with readers and as a community we thrived.
Facebook and Twitter acquaintances became real life, in-the-flesh friendships, and bonds were formed, that to this day, remain firmly in place.
Over the coming months, I threw myself into more stories and met more Authors, readers and bloggers. They were all so wonderful and positive, we recommended books to each other and reader groups were popping up all over the place and I read more books that fundamentally changed my attitude to life.
I too wanted to start a blog—what fun it would be to write about the books I had read, the authors I had met and I hoped that other people would be inspired to pick up a book and enjoy them as much as I had. I was sure it wouldn’t take up too much of my time: a few hours a week maybe. And so a blog was built… I say that like it took 2 mins. It took several days and much banging my head on the dining room table and drinking—lots and lots of drinking, but I would not let Blogger beat me. An email account was set up and a Facebook page. Slowly, my Facebook and Twitter numbers picked up, and my email inbox went from a few emails a day to 100’s a week, all asking me to post about books, promos, cover reveals, release blitzes and reviews.
I could no longer cope. I was drowning in a sea of admin instead of doing what I loved. Reading.
I sent out a heartfelt plea. I needed help. I needed a partner in crime. But who could I trust to uphold the same values as me? Who could I trust with the Bare Naked Words brand? Someone who would steer clear of drama, who would honour and respect the arcs we received and when a promise is made to an author to review, a review there would be.
Fortunately, someone was recommended to me, and we started chatting, and we soon realised that although we didn’t agree on all things books and still don’t, we were very much aligned in our values.
“Come and join me,” I said.
“I’d love to join you,” she said.
“I can probably commit 10 HOURS A WEEK to the blog,” she said confidently.
“Oh that’s plenty,” I assured her.
Oh how we look back and laugh at those young, naïve bloggers that we were.
We probably do double that each per week now. On top of our real life jobs and our families.
Yes, there have been challenges along the way. Not everyone we have met has been super lovely.
But we love it.
I remember the first time Bare Naked Words was mentioned in the acknowledgements of a book.
When I saw Claire and I named personally in the thank yous.
We have met the most amazing people and continue to do so.
When we see authors we work with hit USA Today or New York Times bestsellers lists
They are our family
We continue to push and encourage those new authors we meet, and we wish every single one of them success.
Has the book world changed? Yes
Has the Blogging world changed? Yes
But it is still the best community, ever.
So thank god for those “10 HOURS PER WEEK”. Because if it weren’t for Claire joining me, we wouldn’t be where we are today.
And for that, I am eternally grateful.
Have a super lovely day book world for you have given me so much and continue to do just that.