Yes! It’s Thursday! And I’m so pleased and proud to bring you another #ThrowItForward Thursday. #WriterWednesday is for honoring fellow authors; #ThrowItForward Thursday shines the spotlight on those who help us authors in innumerable ways: book bloggers, editors, cover designers, etc. Because without y’all, we authors would be toast!
Today, we have Gina from Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers. I just love the fact that her blog combines two of my favorite things: books and food. Okay, so the books are the food on her delightful blog, but, well, you get the picture. Gina very kindly reviewed A Man of Character, but believe you me, she’s got a lot more going on than that. So grab your favorite beverage, settle back, and get to know Gina a little bit more!
What was the impetus behind starting Insatiable Readers? How long have you been a book blogger?
SFIR took root when I first started working at our local chain bookstore. I had always had a love of reading and scoring that job, even if it was a 2nd to my full-time position, was a dream. A fellow coworker and I were discussing a title and the conversation led into her current blog. I was clueless…had heard the term but had no earthly idea what it was. She kindly explained the basics and offered to help me set one up. I agreed, but being impatient (our schedules were conflicting), I struck out on my own to discover the WORLD OF BLOGGING via BlogSpot and the rest is history!
What is your favorite genre to review? Any genres that really aren’t your cup of tea?
Favorite genre is Fiction in general; more specifically Young Adult, Children’s, Contemporary, and Literary. I can do some Sci-Fi on a limited basis and Romance as long as it stays the Contemporary line of things (not so much Johnny! Marsha!). I’ve been known to dabble in Biographies, Memoirs, Pets, Christian Fiction…I’m sorry, it would have been MUCH easier if I answered the LATTER question first.
The two genres I do not dabble in are Sports and Erotica. No jokes on that either….I can see them brewing in your mind. 😉
[ML: *innocent face*]
Do you have a preference regarding accepting requests from traditionally published vs indie published authors? Do you notice a quality difference in the materials you receive from each (generally speaking)?
Personally, I don’t have a preference. I know some readers are hardcore one or the other, but I’m equal opportunity in that area. If a book sounds good, and captures my interest, I’m more than happy to take a trip through the pages. Quality wise…honestly I’ve seen errors and opportunities in books I’ve received from both sources. It can happen more frequently in smaller publishers (or to self-published authors) that don’t necessarily have the manpower or are splitting resources, but generally by the final product, it all turns out for the best.
How many review requests do you receive a month, and how many are you able to accommodate?
Ooh…the million dollar question. I really don’t know exactly on the numbers, though I try to tackle them as I see them. As far as how many I can accommodate, it’s dependent upon the type of post (review, spotlight, teaser, giveaway, excerpt, etc)…and my scheduling. I’ve been known to stretch myself a little thin from time to time. *-* What can I say? So many GREAT books, so little time! I’m trying to do better, but I won’t miss a deadline. That I can promise.
What’s one thing you wish authors knew about approaching book bloggers?
We’re people, not robots. Tell us about yourself and the book. If we’re not interested, please don’t take offense. We do this on our own time because we love reading and the magic that books bring into our (collectively speaking) lives, not because we’re obligated to take on every one that comes our way. Also, many bloggers have Review Policies on their sites. Take a moment to read them before sending the pitch; it may save yourself some time (ergo my preference to NOT read Erotica…and receiving a request to review one *-*). Oh and if you’re going to use a “form pitch” at least personalize the opening; getting a “Dear <insert name here>” (which I’ve actually received before)…or one that’s addressed to the wrong person (ditto on the comment) can be a little irksome. (Wait you asked for one thing…oops!)
What’s your biggest pet peeve in a story? Dialogue issues? Saggy plot? Unrealistic characters? Typos?
Biggest? Typos and grammar issues. It interrupts my train of thought when I’m reading if I have to go back and try to figure out what the author was trying to say over and over again. Most other things I can work with…I realize that every work is the author’s “baby” so I try to give each one their time to shine.
Where do you see yourself and your blog in 5 years?
Me? Well, I’d LOVE to be in Publishing…specifically the Editorial aspect of it all. The idea of helping to bring new titles to the forefront and assisting in them reaching their full potential really makes my heart flutter. The chances…I wouldn’t say nonexistent but they are slim simply geographically speaking. As for my blog, I’d love to see it continue marching forward like a story you just can’t get enough of, with the readership expanding to spark some conversations in the blogosphere. *daydreams*
[ML: The internet makes all sorts of things possible, you know! My editor lives in England, my cover designer/formatter in Australia. Don’t let geography limit you!]
What are one or two relatively undiscovered books you think people should pick up and read?
Oh man…one or two? Eek! I could probably fill a book with them to be honest. Umm, let’s see…two, two, gotta pick two. Alright, I’ll pick…but it doesn’t mean that the others in my head right now are any less on the totem pole of reading.
ONE: Lot’s Mountain by N.R. Allen
TWO: Alice Takes Back Wonderland by David D. Hammons
…both are YA fantasy picks that really left their mark in my mind, but I mean there are SO MANY MORE!
How much time do you devote to your reviews and blog each week?
I try to have a new post every day which may mean scheduling in advance (when possible…not always), but each review generally takes about two hours from start to finish. So I guess that means at least 14 hours, not including reading?
Is there any type of story you have yet to read but would love to see?
You know, I’m not certain. Every time I think I’ve read most types of stories, something new crops up and surprises me, like this Picture Book I read earlier today, Dewey Bob by Judy Schachner. I thought it was going to be this story about a cute little raccoon who collects things but in actuality, it was SO MUCH MORE! (Can’t tell you what, that would spoil the surprise for YOU!) I leave the writing and creating to the authors…I’ll take ownership of the enjoyment factor. ^-^
What’s the book blogging community like? Do you interact regularly with fellow bloggers, reads, and/or authors?
The book blogging community for the most part is the most welcoming I’ve seen in reality or virtually. There’s always going to be a few that push people’s buttons the wrong way, but the majority are kindhearted, happy to answer a question, offer their words of wisdom for a problem you’ve encountered, or simply share a good conversation about what you’re reading now or perhaps should be reading.
Interaction-wise, it’s more of a hit and miss. There are a few bloggers that I regularly chat with (Tracey at Pen and Paper, Jess of Nayuleska’s Reading Corner, to name a few), other bloggers and authors I catch in passing. Some over the years have fallen out of touch whether it be us missing each other time wise, losing interest in blogging, or perhaps their star of fame shot so high so fast that staying in touch wasn’t the easiest of things. It’s all good though…the memories stay with you even no matter what.
Is there anything else you’d like us to know?
I can be long-winded at times…like in this interview. ^-^ As I’ve said before, I LOVE READING and sharing my experience through the pages is something that really touches my heart. The more connections I make with authors, publishers, publicists, and readers, the merrier…and if something I’ve written speaks to you, feel free to leave a comment! Each one is another ray of sunshine in my day.
Also….THANK YOU for the opportunity to visit and say my piece! Though it may have been larger than anticipated, it was wonderful to share a bit of myself with you and your readers. ^-^ – Gina
Want to connect further with Gina? Find her here!
Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers: http://insatiablereaders.blogspot.com
Thank you so much for sharing your time and self with us today, Gina – I loved reading all about you and your experiences as a book blogger, and just have to say thank you again for all you do for authors.
You clearly invest your whole self into sharing your love of books with others, and it shows!
Thank you so much for the feature today! It was a pleasure indeed. Oh and congratulations on that new book! ^-^
Thanks, Gina – I really do love hearing from book bloggers about the whole process, and how you feel about what you do. It’s such a wonderful service to the community, to showcase authors and get people reading more! So thank you, thank you, thank you! 🙂
I know Gina, have for over 4 years now, and I love this piece. Honestly, I can’t say enough nice things about her. I saw her last week and started asking her to remember a book she reviewed 2 years ago, gave her the info I could remember and her wonderful mind went to work and remembered what I was talking about. Of course then we had to have a “mini” book discussion and share our mutual love. I am honored to call her friend! Thank you for spotlighting her, more and more people should know the wonder that is Gina ?
What a wonderful comment and testament, Michelle – thanks so much for stopping by to sing Gina’s praises. She seems pretty awesome to me, too, and we’ve only met virtually. 🙂
Aww… *hugs* Thank you for the kind words friend! ^-^