More times than not, after people discover TNBBC and its blog, they will ask me “So, what got you into reading?” and I always find it difficult to answer that question. Not because I don’t know the answer, but mostly because it’s not as easy to define as one would think.
See, initially, I owe my love of reading to my mother. She planted the seed at young age with weekly trips to the library. I remember hiding out in my bedroom, reading ravenously, finishing the books I’d borrowed days before our next scheduled trip. I remember peeking through my mother’s bookshelves, and sneaking down a copy of Stephen King’s IT when I was 12, and terrifying the crap out of myself for weeks yet refusing to put it down because it was just that good. I remember going through a period of reading only the books that my high school English Lit classes assigned us and simultaneously enjoying them while being somewhat underwhelmed by them. And somehow, shortly after that, reading sort of fell to the wayside.
Then I suddenly fell back into a regular reading pattern as an adult. At first, I would read what was lying around, and then run out to the bookstore to buy another book when I was done. Soon, I was buying three or four at a time. Before I knew it, I was buying more books in a week than I could read, and was building up quite a backlog. When I had bought all of the books I had wanted, I started searching online for books that were similar to the ones I had been reading, and adding them to my to-buy list.
It was around this time that I discovered Goodreads.com. Goodreads offers readers a way to “shelve” and track the books they want to buy, bought but haven’t read, and we can post reviews on the ones we have read. The site also gives readers a way to connect with other readers via book groups, many of which I quickly joined. Disappointed with the participation in the existing groups, I decided to create a group of my own. I wanted it to be a place where readers could recommend books to each other, and talk about which books they were buying, and reading, and enjoying. I wanted to find people out there who were like me, endlessly seeking the next best book. Thus I christened the group “The Next Best Book Club.”
The interaction between author, publisher, and reader is what continues to fuel my love of reading. So, what keeps you reading?
What do you like most about online book groups and why? What do you like least? Thanks for your input in helping make the Better World Books community better for you.